Here’s what you need to know about each of these resume formats. Resume Format #1 - Reverse-Chronological. As we mentioned before, the reverse-chronological resume format is the most popular format in 2021.
- LibreOffice LibreOffice is a free and powerful office suite, as well as an open source PDF editor for Windows. This open-source PDF editor was created to be like Microsoft Word so that it can open and edit PDF files easily.
- LibreOffice Homepage, office suite, download, open standards, open source, free software, LibreOffice.
There are 3 common resume formats you can pick from:
- Combination (Also known as Hybrid)
Each of these formats has its own pros and cons, and the format you end up picking will have a significant impact on your job search.
And in this guide, we’re going to teach you how to pick the right resume format for you.
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Here’s what we’re going to cover:
- What Are The 3 Main Resume Formats
- Resume Format Pros and Cons
- How to Choose a Resume Format
- 7+ Essential Resume Formatting Tips
- 5 Free Resume Templates (You Can Steal)
- Resumes 101 - What You Need to Know to Create a Convincing Resume
- Resume Format FAQ
So, let’s get started!
What Are The 3 Main Resume Formats
As we mentioned before, the 3 main resume formats are:
- Reverse-chronological - This one’s the most common and practical resume format. A reverse-chronological resume lists your work experiences and skills in reverse-chronological order.
- Functional - The functional resume, also known as the skills-based resume, is the least popular resume format in 2021. What differentiates this format from the other two is that it focuses more on your skills rather than your work experience.
- Combination (or, hybrid) - As you probably already guessed, this one’s a combination of the other two formats. It focuses on both skills and experiences.
Here’s what you need to know about each of these resume formats.
Resume Format #1 - Reverse-Chronological
As we mentioned before, the reverse-chronological resume format is the most popular format in 2021.
It usually looks like this:
And here’s what you’d include in a reverse-chronological resume:
- Contact Information - Your name, phone number, location, and email address. In some cases, you can include useful links, such as a LinkedIn or GitHub profile.
- Resume Summary or Objective - A brief 2-4 sentence summary of your work experience, or your objective for applying for a given position.
- Professional Title - Your title. This should mirror the exact position you’re applying for.
- Work Experience - Your work experience in reverse-chronological order. When possible, talk about achievements over responsibilities.
- Skills Section - Skills relevant for the position you’re applying for.
- Education - Your educational history. Pro tip - if you have a B.A., feel free to skip on your high school education.
- Optional Sections - Sections like volunteering, projects, portfolio, hobbies, etc. While they’re not a game-changer, they can help fill up some space on your resume.
- Recruiters and HR managers prefer this format.
- Very easy to skim.
- Provides an easy-to-read chronological history of your work experience.
- The most popular resume format in 2021.
- Hard to fill in for a recent graduate with no work experience.
- Makes career gaps very obvious. If you’re a career changer, you might want to try one of the other formats.
Resume Format #2 - Functional
This resume format has also been called a skills-based resume format. Here’s what it looks like:
As the name suggests, a functional resume focuses more on skills rather than work experience.
It’s mainly useful for recent graduates or career changers since your work experience is not the main focus of the resume.
What to include a functional resume:
- Contact Information
- Resume Summary or Objective
- Professional Title
- Skills Summary
- Additional Skills
- Work Experience
As you can see, the main difference from a reverse-chronological resume is that the focus of the functional resume is the Skill Summary (or Areas of Strengths in the example above) section.
And it looks like this:
Example of Skills Summary (Areas of Strengths):
- Over 10 years of experience in the service industry as a bartender, waiter, and bar manager
- Extensive knowledge of cocktails, alcoholic beverages, wines, and run-of-the-meal restaurant offerings
- Experience managing a team of 3 bartenders
- Ensuring that the bar is stocked at all times
The point of a skill summary is to sell your skill-set rather than your work experience. The above summary, for example, could be that of a bar manager looking to apply for the position of a restaurant manager.
While it’s clear that the person does not have experience as a restaurant manager, the skill summary shows how his skills would make him a great candidate.
The pros and cons of a functional resume are as follows:
Functional Resume Format Pros:
- Good for highlighting specific skills.
- Useful if you’re switching careers since you can explain how your skills transfer to the new job.
- Also useful if you’re a recent graduate with practical skills, but not much work experience.
Functional Resume Format Cons:
- The functional resume format is not very popular in 2021, and most recruiters and hiring managers aren’t familiar with it.
- Applicant tracking systems (ATS) have difficulties reading functional resumes.
Resume Format #3 - Combination (Or, Hybrid)
The combination resume format, also known as the “hybrid,” is a mixture between the functional and reverse-chronological formats.
It also comes with a skill summary section, but there’s a greater focus on the work experience.
The typical sections you’d find on a combination resume are the same as that of a functional resume, the main difference being the focus on work experience.
What to include in a combination resume:
- Contact Information
- Skill Summary
- Additional Skills
- Work Experience
A functional resume can have zero or minimal work history, while a combination resume puts equal emphasis on both.
Usually, the combination resume is for candidates with extensive work experience, who need a way to emphasize more work experience and skills with less space.
Combination Resume Format Pros:
- Allows you to show off more of your experience and skills using less space.
- Useful for very senior professionals or executives who need to highlight more than just their work experience.
Combination Resume Format Cons:
- As with the functional resume format, applicant tracking systems have difficulties reading combination resumes.
- If you’re a recent graduate or don’t have much work experience, this resume format is not for you.
How to Choose the Best Resume Format
Now that we’ve covered all 3 of the common resume formats, you’re probably wondering which one’s the right for you.
Here’s what we recommend:
In 99% of the cases, we’d recommend going with a reverse-chronological resume format.
In 2021, it’s the most common and useful format:
- Applicant tracking systems can read it without any problems.
- All recruiters and hiring managers are familiar with this format.
- Whether you’re a recent graduate or a senior professional, it’s the easiest format to work with.
The only case we’d recommend going with a functional or combination resume is if you’re a career changer, and even then, it’s still quite risky.
True, a combination or hybrid resume will help you emphasize your skills over work experience. However, both of these resume formats are not really that popular in 2021.
There’s a good chance that the applicant tracking system won’t be able to read your resume and automatically discard it - after all the time you put into creating the resume!
At the same time, recruiters might just not be familiar with these resume formats, or think that you’re just trying to hide the fact that you’re not experienced, and disqualify you based on that.
So, rule of thumb - when in doubt, go for the reverse-chronological resume.
7+ Essential Resume Formatting Tips
- Want to avoid all the hassles of formatting your resume? Just use an online resume builder. The software will help structure your resume, and all you have to worry about are the contents!
- Don’t go over one page. The resume should be a summary of your work experience, not your entire life story.
- Use standard section headers. E.g.: your work experience should be called just that - “Work Experience,” and not “work history.” The reason for this is that applicant tracking systems look for these headings to pull information from.
- Pick a resume font that’s going to help you stand out. We recommend Ubuntu, Roboto, or Overpass.
- Structure your work experience section as follows: Company Name, Location, Job Title, Start and End Dates, Responsibilities and Achievements.
- Speaking of responsibilities and achievements, list those in bullets. Prioritize achievements over responsibilities, and don’t go over 6-8 bullets per position.
- Save your resume as a PDF or a Docx. Both formats can be read by applicant tracking systems. Whatever you do, don’t submit a JPEG of your resume!
5 Free Resume Templates (You Can Use Right Away)
Picked your resume format? Awesome!
Now, the next thing you need is an easy-to-read, professional resume template.
Here are some of our best templates (you can steal!):
#1. Simple Resume Template
Looking for something Simple, yet professional?
Try out our Simple resume template - it’s well-designed, skimmable, and an all-time recruiter favorite.
#2. College Resume Template
College is the perfect resume format for a recent graduate.
It has a bit more emphasis on skills than work experience, but it doesn’t overdo it, like the functional resume format.
#3. Professional Resume Template
The Professional is one of our all-time favorite resume templates - we created this one in collaboration with several recruiters.
It’s easy to read and skim, and recruiters can find whatever information they’re looking for in a snap!
#4. Modern Resume Template
Want your resume design to stand out? Then Modern is the way to go.
It comes with a traditional structure and formatting of a traditional resume, with some creativity sprinkled on top.
#5. Creative Resume Template
Applying for jobs in the creative industry?
Then our Creative resume template is the perfect choice for you.
This template is perfect for careers in marketing, advertising, design, and other creative fields.
Resumes 101 - What You Need to Know to Create a Convincing Resume
Picking the right resume format is just the first step in creating a convincing resume.
Want to learn how to make a resume that lands you the job?
Check out some of our best career resources:
- The Jobseeker’s Odyssey - This one’s our flagship e-book. It covers literally everything you need to know about job-search: how to make a resume, how to write a cover letter, how to apply for jobs effectively, what are the most common job interview questions, and a LOT more. The book is jam-packed with value, and illustrated, making it an extremely easy read.
- How to Make a Resume - Our comprehensive guide on how to make a resume, from A to Z.
- Interview Questions And Answers - Having a hard time with job interviews? This guide features ALL the most common job interview questions out there.
- How to Write a Cover Letter - Our ultimate guide on writing a cover letter (free templates included!)
- 50+ Resume Examples - Need some inspiration with your resume? Check out our resume examples for 50+ different positions and fields.
- 43+ Resume Tips - A complete list of all our resume tips, ordered by importance.
- 26+ Interview Mistakes - Whatever you do, avoid making these common interview mistakes.
And of course, for more industry-leading job-search advice, make sure to follow our career blog!
Resume Format FAQ
Do you still have some questions about resume formatting? We’ll get them answered here!
#1. What’s the best resume format?
The best resume format is, hands-down, the reverse-chronological format.
- It’s very easy to read and skim.
- Recruiters and hiring managers are familiar with this format, as most people use it.
- It’s the most popular resume format in 2021.
- Applicant tracking systems can read a reverse-chronological resume with ease.
#2. Which resume format is best for students?
Again, the answer is reverse-chronological.
While a functional resume can help you emphasize your skills more than work experience, it comes with 2 serious problems:
- Recruiters aren’t familiar with it, and they might think you’re trying to hide the fact that you don’t have work experience.
- Applicant tracking systems have trouble reading this resume format.
Worried about the fact that you don’t have any work experience?
Here’s the thing - for most entry-level positions or internships, you’re NOT required to have any work experience.
The whole “you need work experience to get work experience” saying is a lie. No recruiter expects an entry-level candidate to have any experience!
#3. What’s the easiest way to build my resume?
The easiest, most efficient way to create a resume is through a resume builder:
See, if you use text editor, you could spend hours trying to format your resume, but the moment you make a tiny design change, the whole resume layout gets completely messed up!
Using a resume builder, on the other hand, comes with a ton of benefits:
- Recruiter-friendly layout. All of our resume templates are created with recruiters in mind - they’re extremely easy to read and skim.
- Easy to build. Our resume builder is extremely easy to use. All YOU have to do is fill in the content - we take care of all the resume formatting.
- ATS-friendly. Applicant tracking systems can read our resumes perfectly fine, ensuring that you don’t get automatically disqualified when applying for positions.
- Free (with premium features). Our base builder is completely free without any hidden paywalls! If you’re looking to upgrade the resume design, though, or get access to several awesome features, you can always upgrade to Premium.
Want to give it a go?
Now, let’s do a quick recap:
- There are 3 common resume formats - reverse-chronological, functional, and combination (or, hybrid).
- The reverse-chronological format is the most popular one in 2021, and we always recommend you to go with that one.
- A functional resume focuses more on skills rather than work experience and is usually used by career changers or students.
- A combination resume is a mix of functional and reverse-chronological formats and puts equal emphasis on work experience and skill-set.
- Both functional and combination resumes are not too popular, and applicant tracking systems have trouble reading them.
If you're looking for a Microsoft Office alternative, don’t want a monthly subscription, or prefer to download your software, LibreOffice is an excellent choice.
As open-source software, LibreOffice is continually updated with new improvements and doesn’t need an internet connection to run. In this LibreOffice review, you’ll learn how the software functions and how it differs from other office suites.
Who is LibreOffice for?
LibreOffice is for individual users and small businesses who want free, downloadable tools, without worrying that their software will become obsolete and unsupported in years to come. Although some large enterprises use LibreOffice, the lack of support is an issue.
Companies with developers may prefer LibreOffice because, by the nature of open-source software, you can configure the code to fit your needs. Moreover, several partners sell enterprise versions with customer service and service level agreements (SLA). You may prefer LibreOffice if:
- Your team uses various operating systems, such as Linux, macOS, or Windows
- Internet access is spotty or unavailable at remote business locations
- You want software installed on your computer without worrying about it going extinct
- Mobile apps and online accessibility aren’t important to you
- You need extensive language support in your documents
- You’re familiar with Microsoft Word and are looking for a free version
There is a cloud-based version of LibreOffice available through third parties under names such as Collabora Office and LibreOffice Online powered by CIB. However, the web-based version doesn’t include a file storage system and isn’t supported by The Document Foundation, so this LibreOffice review doesn’t include information about the cloud version.
LibreOffice also gets updated frequently. For example, LibreOffice 5.0 came out in 2015, version 6.0 appeared in 2017, and 7.0 was introduced in 2020.
Like other Zoho Office Suite, LibreOffice comes with the main tools you need to create documents, spreadsheets, and presentations. It also provides a database comparable to Microsoft Access.
However, it doesn’t offer any communication or collaboration tools. Nor does it offer cloud storage, so you can use document management best practices using any existing file solution.
The main features of LibreOffice are:
- Writer: An easy-to-use word processing application
- Calc: A spreadsheet program similar to Microsoft Excel or Google Sheets.
- Impress: A presentation platform to create slideshows
- Draw: An integrated graphic editing program
- Base: A database program that integrates with all LibreOffice applications
- Math: A formula editor used to create intricate formulas for use in all LibreOffice apps
- Charts: A standalone tool to create and edit charts and graphs
- Extensions: Hundreds of add-on tools to suit nearly any business need
LibreOffice Writer is a word processing tool offering standard features found in other similar programs, including an autocorrect dictionary and autocomplete feature.
Writer is compatible with many document formats. However, there may be formatting errors or non-compatible fonts when opening a Word document in LibreOffice, which can pose a problem if you work with clients or team members who use Microsoft Office.
In contrast, if you work with international clients and teams using open document formats, you’ll appreciate the native support for this file type.
LibreOffice Writer also offers pre-built templates for documents such as faxes, business cards, meeting minutes, or conference agendas.
Although the interface is similar to Microsoft Word, completing some tasks, like changing your header style, takes more clicks than with other word processing programs. However, there are some neat built-in features and extensions, such as:
- An option to export documents as an eBook, which isn’t available without a third-party integration on Microsoft Word
- A redaction tool to hide sensitive data either one word at a time or automatically by selecting words or phrases to sanitize
- An out-of-the-box grammar checker in four languages, including English, Brazilian, Hungarian, and Russian
- Additional extensions for grammar checkers in more than 30 languages, a quick response (QR) code generator, and an emoji toolbar
LibreOffice Writer uses a familiar interface and toolbars. Source: LibreOffice software.
LibreOffice Calc is a user-friendly spreadsheet program with a wizard that helps you pull in content from databases or ask 'what if' questions from its Scenario Manager.
You can have up to 1,024 columns and 1,048,576 rows per worksheet. Both Microsoft 365 and Google Workspace spreadsheet programs allow over 15,000 columns but offer a similar number of rows per spreadsheet. Calc also offers 508 spreadsheet functions, which is comparable to Microsoft.
Although the software lets you create charts, there is a lag time to update your spreadsheet with a new chart and fewer chart options than other spreadsheet programs. Furthermore, software bugs exist with things like patterned or gradient cell background colors.
To get functionality similar to Microsoft, you’ll need to download extensions. For example, LibreOffice Calc doesn’t come with the function to remove duplicate cells. You can add this feature by downloading the Remove Duplicates extension and restarting Calc. You also won’t find templates for Calc, but a few are available for download as an extension.
Easily get totals for your columns using the sum function. Source: LibreOffice software.
LibreOffice Impress is a slideshow-creation tool offering several views including, normal, outline, notes, handout, and slide sorter.
It provides 3D imaging tools, downloadable templates from extensions, animation functions, and a presenter console. Use your phone or tablet as a remote during presentations by downloading an app from Google or App.
Create, import, or edit presentations in LibreOffice Impress
Source: LibreOffice software.
LibreOffice Draw is a graphic-editing program perfect for designing flowcharts, network diagrams, and other technical drawings. It offers freehand tools, object grouping functions, and displays dimension lines. You can also use Draw to edit photos and PDF files.
Source: LibreOffice software.
LibreOffice Base is a database management system that lets you build a custom database for all LibreOffice suite programs.
Unlike Microsoft Access, which only works on the Windows operating system, LibreOffice Base is fully functional on all operating systems. However, it’s not nearly as visually appealing as Airtable.
Base comes with wizards and pre-defined table definitions, which help you design forms, tables, and reports used for tracking customers, invoices, or assets. Base supports:
- Java database connectivity (JDBC)
- Open database connectivity (ODBC)
- Mozilla Thunderbird address book
- KDE address book
- Evolution lightweight directory access protocol (LDAP) and storage
- Windows system address book
- Microsoft Outlook address book when using Microsoft Windows
Use the table wizard to quickly build a database in LibreOffice Base.
Source: LibreOffice software.
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LibreOffice Math is an advanced formula editor used by researchers or data scientists. You can use Math on its own or within Writer, Impress, Calc, or Draw. You can create scientific and mathematical formulas with various elements, including:
- Systems of equations
- Terms with exponents
Create advanced formulas in LibreOffice Math. Source: LibreOffice software.
LibreOffice Charts can be used as a standalone application or within any other LibreOffice programs. It allows you to create embeddable pie charts, 2D and 3D charts, dot charts, and trend graphs.
All LibreOffice programs allow you to add an unlimited number of extensions or templates to improve your software’s functionality. You can find extensions via LibreOffice or OpenOffice, with more than 1,100 available options.
Popular extensions include:
- OpenOffice.org2GoogleDocs: Lets you import, export, and update documents from Zoho, Google Docs, and WebDAV.
- Language support: You’ll find an extensive list of dictionaries, grammar checkers, and thesauruses for tons of languages.
- Clipart: None of the LibreOffice tools come with clipart, but there are more than 30 different clipart extensions.
Choose from hundreds of extensions in the LibreOffice extension center. Source: extensions.libreoffice.org.
LibreOffice’s ease of use
If you grew up using Microsoft Office products, then you may find LibreOffice easy to use. The interface resembles older versions of Microsoft, although the latest update offers a Notebook bar design view, closely resembling Google or Microsoft interfaces.
Regardless, there is definitely a learning curve with the LibreOffice suite. Some functions are hidden under submenus, meaning you’ll click more times to get the results you want.
As an open-source software, LibreOffice is free to download and use on as many supported devices as you want. New updates come out frequently; you simply download the latest update without uninstalling the current version or losing any saved files.
However, there isn’t any type of technical or customer service options. The Document Foundation recommends using an ecosystem partner for assistance and new features.
Ecosystem partners include:
- Collabora: Offers a free version for up to 20 users, a paid plan for up to 99 users that costs $18 per user per year, and an Enterprise version available for a custom quote.
- CIB: Provides LibreOffice software and support for $14.99 for installation on up to 10 Windows devices. It’s unclear if this is a subscription or a one-time fee.
LibreOffice also has a certification program and can direct you to various professionals for support services. Professionals include developers, migration experts, and certified trainers.
Unlike other platforms, LibreOffice doesn’t provide any direct support. There aren’t phone, live chat, or email customer services. To get help with LibreOffice, you can:
- Join a group mailing list and pose your question to the group
- Use the LibreOffice support site by posting a query to the message board
- Purchase LibreOffice through an ecosystem partner offering support services
- Search online to find answers through various blogs and help forums
Benefits of LibreOffice
LibreOffice can be a great alternative to Microsoft or Google products if you want free software that won’t ever require you to upgrade and pay.
Your company can use LibreOffice with the peace of mind that it’ll still be around and be able to open your old documents, even a decade from now. Other advantages of using LibreOffice include:
- Zero cost to download and use the software on an unlimited number of devices
- Frequent updates and extensions added to improve functionality
- Works well on older operating systems, laptops, and desktop computers
- Language support for 191 languages and counting
- Cross-platform use, as it works equally well on Linux, macOS, or Windows devices
- No internet connection required
- Most file types are compatible with LibreOffice
- Unlike legacy programs, you won’t lose functionality or access during upgrades
- No privacy or data collection concerns as it only exists on your computer
Best open-source office software
If you’re tired of per-user or per-device subscription fees or are worried about losing access to documents when using outdated software, then LibreOffice is a good alternative. It provides basic office tools that work without an internet connection. Although there’s a learning curve for simple word processing documents and spreadsheets, this tool is relatively easy to use.
Frequently Asked Questions for LibreOffice
For basic word processing and spreadsheets, LibreOffice works as well as Microsoft Office does. However, the Microsoft 365 office suite provides cloud storage, real-time collaboration, and a friendlier user interface.
Yes, using LibreOffice is as safe as using any other type of software. Since it’s developed using the open-source method, any type of malicious code would be caught quickly. Furthermore, LibreOffice doesn’t store your files online or collect your personal data, so using it is as safe as using your office computer’s hard drive.
If you download LibreOffice through The Document Foundation, there is no online version. However, ecosystem partners offer online LibreOffice versions, which usually have less functionality than downloaded programs.
Openoffice Vs Libreoffice 2020
Decide if switching to open-source software is right for you by downloading the free LibreOffice platform today.
Decide if switching to open-source software is right for you by downloading the free LibreOffice platform today.
The Motley Fool has a Disclosure Policy. The Author and/or The Motley Fool may have an interest in companies mentioned.