Sunday, January 18, 2009

Resumes for older or returning professionals: functional or chronological?


We often hear debates about gaps on resumes. Should resumes be functional or chronological?

Max Messmer has a humorous column on this issue on p 19 of The DC Examiner, called “Your Money: Bargains on the Block”.

While career counselors tend to recommend functional resumes for older professionals or for people with gaps (which happen because of pregnancy and child rearing (maybe even for dads now), and, more often in recent and future years, eldercare).

Yet, recruiters have told me in phone conversations that clients would much rather see chronological resumes. They simply want candidates to come clean about the gaps. Yet, there’s evidence that some clients are reluctant to hire any candidate with “family” issues (which may not always be voluntary) because of the fear of disruption. They simply won’t say anything.

I certainly welcome comments on the “functional resume” issue for older employees or returning parents.

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