The term reverse chronological order refers to a format that is commonly used in combination resumes and chronological resumes to display work experience or work history. The reverse chronological order format calls for the most recent work experience to appear first in the document, while the oldest experience appears last.
When presenting work history on a resume, the reader is more interested in what the applicant has done recently than in the distant past. The rationale behind using reverse chronological order is that it presents the recruiter, or hiring manager, with the most recent work experience first, and then allows them to read back in time to see how the applicant's career has progressed.
Below is an illustration of work experience presented in reverse chronological order (the dates have been placed in italics to demonstrate this point):
Company ABC, New Town, New York
September 2012 to Present
Manager: Workforce Planning
Responsible for managing eight associates trained in the art of Six Sigma. The team was successful in launching a minimum of five process improvement initiatives annually. Typical bottom line benefits would exceed $5 million.
U.S. Manufacturing Specialty Company, First Town, Connecticut
June 2006 to September 2012
Plant Manager: Specialty Items
Responsible for supervising and controlling the daily production schedules of 28 employees in the area of plant operations. Under my direction, the plant met all production run schedules on time and under budget. Created first formal quality control committee, which was directly responsible for improving output of products, increasing quality standards from 87% to 96%.