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How to Write a Winning Skill Based Resume

On the last page we introduced five CV and resume template styles. Here's more about writing a skill based resume.

People often get confused when writing their skills based resume.

  • What should the resume look like?
  • What should I focus on?
  • What should be the structure of my resume?
  • What should come first?

To make it easier for you, we discuss below everything that you may need to know before writing your skills based resume.

The Focus

Frankly speaking, "Functional" or "skill based" resumes are so called because these kinds of resume and CV focus on your skills that relate to the job you're applying for rather than the exact job description. So it is important that you know your skill set and design your resume accordingly.

Do You Need a Skills Based Resume?

Before designing a functional or skill based resume, ask yourself:

  • Do I want to change my career?
  • Do I have little work experience?
  • Do I have more academic or technical training than work experience?
  • Do I want to return to the workforce?
  • Have I had many different jobs in the past?
  • Have I held jobs for short periods?

If you answered "yes" to one or more of the questions above, you might be in need of a skills based resume instead of a chronological resume.

How to Write a Skills Based Resume

Here are a few steps you should follow to make a winning skill based resume.

Step 1: Building Skills Inventory

The first step in writing a functional or skill based resume is to build your skills inventory.

The way you do this is that for each job you've held, irrespective of whether it was paid or volunteer, full or part time, you must first write down your major responsibilities that you had during that job.

Once the job responsibilities are in place, think about the skills you used in carrying out those responsibilities. For example, some of the skills may be teamwork, customer service, technology, communication, supervising, managing, training, operating equipment, etc.

Step 2: Selecting the Relevant Skills

So now you have your skills inventory ready. Now you can select the skills from this inventory that are relevant to the job you are applying for.

Based on the job advertisement or job description, you can decide on which skills to pick and which ones do not matter for this particular job.

Step 3: Identifying Your Achievements

Once you pick the relevant skills for the job, you need to identify your achievements. These will be the things you accomplished while using your knowledge, skills or qualities.

Step 4: Writing a Skills Based Resume

Now you have the content for your functional or skill based resume and you can start writing. When writing your functional or skills based resume, you must include:

  1. Contact Information: Your name and contact information should be put at the top
  2. Objective: Write a clear and precise objective. For more advice on how to write resume objective, please visit resume objective help section
  3. Skill Set: Write your top 5 skills and include a brief description for each
  4. Achievements: Explain what you accomplished using your skills
  5. Work Experience: Explain chronologically your work experience with the latest first and include employer information, your job profile and the skills utilized
  6. Education: Mention your educational qualifications in chronological order. Include your achievements/ranks if you obtained any
  7. Awards/Training/Interests: If suited, you can have sections to explain any awards you have received, any training or professional qualifications and your interests that are applicable to the job
  8. References: If you have references, mention them in the next page, if required

Step 5: Proofread your resume

Before submitting your resume or CV, it's vital that you proofread it to check for spelling errors, typos or any incorrect information that may be misleading.

Do You Have a Skill Based or Functional Resume Template Example?

Yes. Click here to download your free skill based resume template.

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