A resume writer can provide a big boost to your job search.
Writing a great resume and navigating the hiring process are skills you can learn for yourself, but getting the help of a resume writing service will make that process quicker and easier.
Resume writers aren’t cheap, however. Before you hire a resume writer it’s important to make sure you will get the most out of your money. Here are the 5 things you must do before you pay for resume writing services.
First of all, it’s important to understand what a resume writer can do for you.
A good resume writer can identify your skill set, showcase your greatest achievements, and tell your career story so that it is impressive and easy to understand. They know how to catch the employer’s eye with a great resume design and how to beat the applicant tracking system.
For most people, the job search is stressful and confusing. Writing about yourself is difficult, and figuring out what employers are looking for takes a lot of dedication, especially if you haven’t applied for jobs in a long time. Good quality professional resume writing services can clarify these things for you, and make the resume writing process a little easier.
Unfortunately, not all resume writing services are worth the cost. If a resume writer sounds like the right choice for you, it’s important to find one who you know can take your resume to the next level. Here are 5 things to do before settling on a writer to hire.
Not all resume writing services are entirely reliable. Some online services aim for quantity instead of quality, producing as many resumes as they can as quickly as possible. They hire writers that have little or no industry experience, and they don’t offer revisions or ask for input from the customer. This type of resume writing company may be cheaper, but the resume still won’t be worth the money.
To make sure that the company you select is worth hiring, research it as well as you can. Make sure the company has a real phone number you can call and an email address where you can contact them.
Look for an About page, or information about the team who will be working on your resume, to see if the writers attach their name to their work. Ideally the company will have a physical address where they can receive mail as well; even if it’s an online service, an address is a good indication that the company is legitimate.
You should also check their marketing materials to make sure they are offering modern resume writing services and keeping up with industry trends.
Ideally, you will be able to find the name of the person who writes your resume before you hire them. If you hire a larger company they may assign you a writer. Alternatively, you can find independent resume writers and career experts in your city.
Any professional resume writer you hire should have years of experience in recruiting, hiring, and writing resumes. They should know what employers are looking for, how the hiring process works, and what strategies work best in the current economy.
If possible, the person you hire should have experience in your specific industry as well. Try to find someone who has had clients in situations similar to yours. Look for work samples and examples of resumes they have written and make sure they are high-quality.
To research the resume writer, check their website and other online profiles. They should disclose their credentials and other evidence of their experience. There is no one specific certification necessary to become a resume writer, but they may list courses, accreditations, or experiences that demonstrate their competence.
You should also look for independent reviews and testimonials that will give an indication of the quality of their work. If you can, try to get a real referral from someone in your network. First-hand experience is always better than online reviews.
With some online resume writing services, you will talk only to a salesperson or customer support specialist—or even worse, just upload a document—and never talk to the resume writer directly.
For your resume to succeed in getting noticed, it will have to be written by someone who understands your experience and career goals. It must be customized to suit your specific needs and the position you are seeking. To do this, the writer will have to speak with you directly.
In fact, even though you aren’t writing the resume yourself, you should be involved in the resume writing process. There should be some back-and-forth as the writer consults you to gain an understanding of your skill set, your needs, and your goals. Multiple interviews and revisions could be necessary to get it just right.
It’s important to make sure that the writer’s process is thorough and professional. If the company promises a 24 hour turnaround, they probably aren’t putting their all into your resume. Writing a resume with no meeting, or with only a 20 minute phone call, might not result in the best product.
Ask the writer what their process is like. Find out how long they want to interview you before they write the resume, how involved they expect you to be, and how quickly they work. Do they want to meet face-to-face, or only by email? Do they offer reviews or revisions? Do they offer more in-depth career resources, or only a resume writing service?
The more robust their process is, the more likely it is that the resume will be good.
Resume writing is a skill you can learn yourself.
If the cost of resume writing services is too high, the turnaround is too slow, or you can’t find a writer you would trust, you can always write your own resume. If the work samples you see aren’t any better than what you could do on your own, you may want to handle this part of the job search independently.
To take a shot at writing your own resume, check out our Free Resume Guide.
Ben is a writer and customer support specialist with 5 years of experience helping job-seekers create their careers. He believes in the importance of a great resume and the power of coffee.
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