If you’re interested in entering the field of public relations, understanding the best resume format to use can make a key difference in whether or not your future employer considers your application to be competitive. Not only should you provide a list of your work history and relevant skill sets, it is also recommended that you mention how your public relations expertise has proved to be a valuable asset for previous employers. A good PR specialist is a valuable addition to any company, and demonstrating your past contributions to previous organizations will give your resume the edge it needs.
Functional vs. Chronological Resumes
While employers once lauded the functional resume for how it organized various skill sets together, it has fallen out of favor in recent years. Because a functional resume highlights an employee’s skill set, very little specific information, such as hiring dates or employer contact information, is included on the first page. As a result, the functional resume is difficult to read. That’s why using the chronological resume format has become a more popular practice. This format presents work history in an easy-to-read format, often listing the most recent time and place of employment first and working backwards. Because of the format’s simplicity and attention to detail, it is considered the best resume format to use in almost every industry. However, there are certain circumstances when creating a hybrid resume, a combination of the functional and chronological format, is appropriate. If you’ve recently graduated and have little work experience or if you’ve recently changed careers, consider using a hybrid resume format.
Formatting Public Relations Skills
Relevant skills should be included separately from your work history in the field. If possible, use a table format to list several skills in a few small columns. Listing your relevant skills is an excellent way to use industry-specific keywords that employers will be looking for. List at least three or four items in each column, and be sure to keep this section succinct. Never exceed seven or eight skills per column. Depending on what type of public relations position you are applying for, various skills may be highlighted over others, especially if you are entering the public sector as opposed to a private sector. Be sure to mention any planning, management, social media or event skills you may have or past activities that demonstrate these qualities.
Tips for the best resume format for a Public Relations Specialist
Separate your work history section from your skills section. Your skills section should be devoted to any accomplishments or achievements you have made in the field that will enhance your resume. Add at least three bullet points to this section, but do not exceed a list of seven or eight skill sets. Employers like an employee with confidence but will not want an applicant who lists skill sets without demonstrating how they were obtained. Keep your phrasing short and to the point with small blurbs such as, “pushed for closer shareholder relations leading to 4% profit increase” or “achieved savings due to tighter conference budgeting.” List your best achievements first and keep them relevant to the public relations position for which you’re applying. The best resume format will list these as bullet points before your work experience history. After your introduction, keep these accomplishments front and center on the first page of your resume.
Whether you find yourself applying for a public relations job at a large corporation, a local business or a government agency, the best resume format will make a key difference in how likely you are to land the job. When crafting your resume, you may find the tips and tricks on LiveCareer useful.