Functional resume samples keep your resume format focused and effective. Use industry-specific functional resume samples for a better resume.
Table Of Contents
1. Quick Takes on the Functional Resume
|✓ Functional Resume Format Key Points|
|✓ It organizes your experience by skill sets or projects, rather than chronology.|
✓ Most employers prefer chronological resumes, but the functional format can be helpful for special circumstances:
✓ Functional resumes really showcase your competencies and achievements, despite an uneven work history.
2. When to Use a Functional Resume
Functional resumes have a greater chance of success if it goes straight into someone’s hands with no automation. “The ATS [applicant tracking system] isn’t going to be able to digest a functional resume,” explains Resume Writer, Frank Grossman.
Industries that are highly skill- and project -oriented are usually more tolerant of a functional resume style. Professionals who work purely on contract, gig economy jobs might also consider a functional resume (although projects could be grouped chronologically under one self-employed heading). Be sure to use an industry-appropriate functional resume sample as a guideline.
|✓ Remember these Keys for Success|
✓ Emphasize your most impressive and relevant skills, projects, and achievements. This is your advertising tool.
✓ Customize the placement of your skills and accomplishments to the specific job/company you’re pursuing.
✓ Unless you’re having trouble filling a page, omit experience that isn’t as appealing or relevant for the potential employer.
✓ Be specific, show evidence, and quantify. Load up your resume with numbers that prove your success.
✓ Because a functional format is looser, it’s extra important to ensure it’s well-organized, appealing, and error-free.
3. Functional Resume Samples by Industry
Education Functional Resumes
Perhaps you’re a teacher, but you have alternated working in another profession and you have some years of unemployment. A functional resume can emphasize your specialties – the subjects you’ve taught, environment, grade-level, and technology you know.
Try to emphasize your quantitative and qualitative achievements – in terms of learning outcomes, curriculum design, assessment scores, and/or completion rates. Toward the bottom, you could group other work experience together in another section (titled, “Other Work Experience,” for example). View an example here.
Accounting and Finance Functional Resumes
Let’s suppose you have some strong accounting or finance skills, but a minimal or jagged work history.
A functional resume could group your experience by specialty: auditing, forensic accounting, tax preparation, financial modeling, investment management, etc. Highlight your education and certifications, as well as your systems/technology skills. View an example here.
Business Functional Resumes
Perhaps a chronological resume doesn’t fit well with your sporadic entrepreneurial history. Or you’ve had inconsistent employment in business. A functional business resume should show off your most impressive achievements and hottest skills.
Emphasize keywords from job postings. Build interest to get an interview and then expand on your resume highlights. View an example here.
Computers and Technology Functional Resumes
If you’re a programmer or IT contractor and you’ve always worked on short-term jobs, you might consider combining all these projects under an umbrella of “consulting” in a chronological resume style. But if that’s not feasible, load up your functional resume with your relevant skills and projects.
In this field, they want details on the depth and breadth of your technological competencies. And you should still include dates. “They want to know the recency of your experience,” says Grossman. View an example here.
Engineering Functional Resumes
Naturally, a stable work history is important, but the engineering field is also a meritocracy. They care about your skills and what you can do. If you’re in a field where patents, for example, are important, this format could help you show off those patents. Remember that engineers want strong specifics. Detail the relevant technologies, mechanics, substances, and components on your resume. View an example here.
Marketing Functional Resumes
If you have created some incredible marketing campaigns, but your work history is a trainwreck, you may want to take advantage of this format.
Show off the power of high-impact visual design in your resume. Make sure your messaging is on target for your customer segment (your hiring managers). Include quantifiable achievements as often as you can, so your numbers show you can do the job. View an example here.
Management Functional Resumes
For a Management functional resume, organize your information around your experience managing people. Include team sizes and functions you’ve managed.
Outline your leadership strengths. Describe how you’ve hired, onboarded, trained, developed, and managed performance. Show evidence that you’ve been effective, based on team performance and/or individual progression. View an example here.
Science Functional Resumes
Science is a broad field, but perhaps your achievements are more impressive than your work history. In this resume format, you should load the initial sections with intriguing data and information for your scientific audience. Perhaps your publications are extensive, but your employment is just beginning. Emphasize what is more impressive about your abilities and accomplishments. View an example here.
Law Functional Resumes
Law resumes tend to be exclusively concerned with relevant work. So a functional resume could be organized with different sections for publications, projects, research, and pro bono work. You might also highlight any language skills and technology skills. View an example here.
Hotel and Hospitality Functional Resumes
Hiring managers in the Hotel and Hospitality industry don’t usually look at resumes with as critical of an eye as some other industries. If you’re applying to a smaller establishment (rather than a global brand with automated HR systems), you often don’t need to worry about fitting the requirements of an ATS. Highlight your most important skills and experience and keep it simple. View an example here.
Sales Functional Resumes
A Sales resume is all about the numbers and awards/achievements. This is still true in a functional format.
Show how you’ve grown sales and revenues. Highlight awards. Cite customer retention rates if favorable and any management experience. Your results are everything in Sales. View an example here.
Retail Functional Resumes
Like Sales, Retail is a numbers-focused industry. Your functional resume should quantify like crazy: revenue or sales growth, customer conversion and retention rates, inventory turnover, profitability. Give your potential employer relevant details like the average transaction value, account size, and/or number of SKUs you managed. View an example here.
Healthcare and Medical Functional Resumes
Perhaps you’ve been out of the workforce for a while or maybe you’re just starting out. Focus your functional resume on up-to-date certifications, licenses, and/or education. Describe the scope and levels of responsibility you’ve had. Outline your skills in specific procedures or specializations. View an example here.
Restaurant and Food Service Functional Resumes
Restaurant and Food Service resumes tend to be uncomplicated. Keep it clean and simple.
Describe your skills, outline any certifications, and highlight any awards. A smaller establishment will receive a functional resume more favorably than a big chain, whose tech systems are set-up for chronological formats. View an example here.
Administrative Support Functional Resumes
Administrative support resumes should be straightforward. If you have a stable work history, use a chronological style. But if you have big gaps, you could focus on your skills in a functional format. How fast do you type? What software and platforms do you know? Have you been entrusted with confidential information? Include any relevant certifications or training. View an example here.
Emergency Services Functional Resumes
Because Emergency Services employers are often government entities or healthcare companies, a chronological resume is highly advised, even with gaps in your work history.
These employers don’t appreciate a “creative” approach. But if you go the functional route, include lots of details showing you’re current in relevant skills and certifications. View an example here.