Should You Use a Resume Writing Service?

by Caroline Levchuck

Should You Use a Resume Writing Service?
By Caroline Levchuck

The majority of recruiters spend less than three minutes reviewing a resume, according to a survey conducted by a major human resources association.

Simple typos or grammatical errors can automatically disqualify a resume from consideration. Many companies receive hundreds of thousands of resumes a year, making it even more difficult for yours to stand out.

These are just some of the reasons job seekers turn to professional resume writing services. Here are some thoughts on how to get the best result when working with a resume writing service.

They're Resume Writers, Not Miracle Workers

Been out of work for a while? A resume writing service can help smooth gaps on your resume. Looking to change careers? A resume writing service can help translate your current skills to another industry.

Been out of the job market for an extended time? A resume writing service can make certain your resume looks and feels contemporary.

But be realistic in your expectations. Resume writers cannot create experience or expertise where there is none. And not all resume writers are career experts, so they may not be the best resource to get advice on broader career issues.

The Pros of Using a Pro

If you have a tight budget or fancy yourself a wordsmith, you may be hesitant to use a professional resume writer. But consider the benefits.

Professional resume writers write resumes. Every day. You do it far less often. Or rarely. Or never.

Think about this when considering hiring a professional:

A good resume writer knows what recruiters want -- and don't want -- to see in a resume. A professional resume writer, particularly one who specializes in your industry or experience level, will know (and include) keywords that will help recruiters find your resume when searching online.

Most services guarantee an easy-to-read, error-free resume. Some job seekers find that the peace of mind they get from a professionally prepared resume is worth the cost, which can range from $50 to $1,000.

Nobody's Perfect...Again, professional resume writers write resumes. Every day. But, sometimes, that can be a "disadvantage."

When choosing a service, be wary of these common pitfalls:

Make sure the resume writer delivers not just form but substance. Some professionally written resumes contain canned or clich├ęd language that show you've used a service and not a very good one at that.

Make sure the resume writer conducts a thorough, detailed interview with you. Send any back-up material you think they need, even if they don't request it.

If possible, work with a resume writer who specializes in your industry or experience level.

Ask in advance what your final resume will look like. Avoid services that offer cookie-cutter formats.

Buyer Beware...Before you hire a professional resume writer, take a look at THEIR resume.

Select a reputable company with a proven track record, such as ResumeEdge. Or look for someone who is a member of a professional resume writers association, such as the Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches.

Finally, agree on a price and delivery date and get them in writing.

Confirm that you'll receive your resume in electronic format so you can print your own copies at will. And, of course, read it over yourself to be certain it's perfect before sending it out. If chosen carefully, a professional resume writer can give you the resume you need to get the job you want.

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