Make us your home page
Jobs | Resumes

Use functional resume to highlight skills

Snail-mail your resume directly to the hiring manager, along with a short note.

Snail-mail your resume directly to the hiring manager, along with a short note.

Human resource officers often want chronological resumes. They want to see your progression of jobs and titles over the years. • But Tammy Kabell with Career Resume Consulting in Kansas City says you can have better luck with a functional resume that highlights your skills and accomplishments.

Her tip? Bypass the human resource department and apply directly to a hiring manager before an opening is posted.

"The resumes that are getting the follow-up calls are the ones that are sent directly to hiring managers, by name," she said.

Kabell urges job hunters to use LinkedIn, Google Advanced Search and to find names of appropriate hiring managers.

Then she prefers a snail-mailed resume with a handwritten note — essentially a brief cover letter — that says, "I'd love to talk to you about joining your team," and briefly summarizes, "Here's what I can do to affect your bottom line."

Preferably, you'll get your resume in the hands of the person who most needs and understands what you do.

"If you're sending your resume into an e-mail in-box in response to a posting, it's likely to be scanned and stuck into a database and you'll never hear from them again," Kabell said.

But her technique works only if your one-page — yes, one page — functional resume is perfect for the hirer's needs.

"You can't force a square peg into a round hole," Kabell advises. "You have to give specifics about your experience and quantify how you produced results for your employer."

Avoid jargon and abbreviations, especially if you're selling your skills as transferable from one industry to another.

"If there's no hiring going on in your former niche, make your resume as industry-neutral as possible," she suggests.

With her approach, she says, hirers don't end up with a pile of resumes that all look the same because everyone included the same buzzwords listed in the job ad as required qualifications.

"Buzzwords are for database sorting programs for applications in response to ads. If you're sending individual resumes, you don't have to worry about that," she said.

Diane Stafford is the workplace and careers columnist at the Kansas City Star.

Use functional resume to highlight skills 07/15/10 [Last modified: Wednesday, July 14, 2010 1:35pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

Copyright: For copyright information, please check with the distributor of this item, Tribune News Service.

Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Make-A-Wish Foundation aims to help more kids in Tampa Bay


    The Make-A-Wish Foundation is on the lookout for sick children in the Tampa Bay area who need a once-in-a-lifetime pick-me-up.

    Grace Savage, a 10-year-old girl with a chromosomal disorder made a trek to the Clearwater Marine Aquarium last year, courtesy of the Make-A-Wish Foundation. The foundation intends to beef up its presence in the Tampa Bay area after a reorganization. The region is now the responsibility of the foundation's Southern Florida chapter, one of the most active in the country, with more than 11,000 wishes granted so far. [JIM DAMASKE   |   Times ]
  2. Florida hides details in nursing home reports. Federal agencies don't.


    TALLAHASSEE — Gov. Rick Scott widened his offensive Thursday against the Broward nursing home he blames for the deaths of 10 residents by setting up a tip line for information, but when it comes to access to the inspection reports of all nursing homes, the governor's administration has heavily censored what the …

    In the foreground is a document detailing the findings of a Feb. 2016 inspection at the Rehabilitation Center at Hollywood Hills obtained from a federal agency, the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Behind it is the state?€™s version of the same document, from the Agency for Health Care Administration, showing how it has been redacted before being released to the public. [Miami Herald]
  3. 'Toxic' times: How repeal of Florida's tax on services reverberates, 30 years later

    State Roundup

    TALLAHASSEE — Long before Hurricane Irma attacked Florida, the state faced a troubled fiscal future that the storm will only make worse.

    Robertson says the tax debate is now “toxic.”
  4. Fewer Tampa Bay homeowners are underwater on their mortgages

    Real Estate

    The percentage of Tampa Bay homeowners underwater on their mortgages continues to drop. In the second quarter of this year, 10.2 percent of borrowers had negative equity compared to nearly 15 percent in the same period a year ago, CoreLogic reported Thursday. Nationally, 5.4 percent of all mortgaged homes were …

    The percentage of Tampa Bay homeowners underwater on their mortgages  continues to drop. [Times file photo]
  5. 'What Happened'? Clinton memoir sold 300,000 copies in first week


    Despite being met with decidedly mixed reviews, What Happened, Hillary Clinton's new memoir about the 2016 presidential campaign, sold a whopping 300,000 copies in its first week.

    The new memoir by former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton sold 300,000 copies in its first week.