Questions for a Resume/LinkedIn Profile Writer, Answered
I explained these questions here. Now, here are my answers:
1. What type of business are you?
This is a career communications firm that provides executive and professional resume writing, LinkedIn profile writing, and related services. It is not a secretarial service, a typing service, or a virtual assistant business.
2. Are you certified by a reputable career industry organization?
I’m a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW). I received this credential from the Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches (PARW/CC) after passing a four-part timed exam that tests knowledge of employment topics and resume writing ability. (To verify my credential, visit this page on PARW/CC’s website and search for me by my last name.)
3. Do you provide assistance with LinkedIn strategy and LinkedIn profiles?
Yes! This is a huge aspect of my business. I write LinkedIn profiles, provide live one-on-one LinkedIn training for clients, and have a series of LinkedIn training videos I’ve created. Many clients hire me for LinkedIn assistance only.
4. Is this a side business? In other words, do you have a day job, or do you run your business full time?
This has been my full-time business since 2008. I’m not anyone’s employee.
5. Are you involved with any professional associations for career/resume services?
I’m a member of the three major industry groups: the National Resume Writers’ Association (NRWA), Career Directors International (CDI), and the Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches (PARW/CC). I’ve received extensive training through these organizations. I’m committed to the profession and stay up to date on trends in resumes, job searching, and LinkedIn.
6. Do you have at least a bachelor’s degree in a relevant field?
Yes. I have a bachelor’s degree in communications with a concentration in print journalism and a minor in English from the University of North Florida.
7. Do you provide help with job search strategy and interview preparation?
Yes. I provide a Job Search Strategy Session via conference call for small groups of clients (typically 2-6 clients). The session goes over job search DOs and DON’Ts, networking secrets, nuances of online applications, and any specific questions or challenges you might have. Additionally, I have an outstanding recruiter associate who has interviewed candidates at all levels for positions at Fortune 500 companies; after a couple sessions with her, you’ll be well-equipped for tough interviews. I also have a career coach who provides career exploration coaching, and we offer job search coaching, too.
8. How many years of business experience do you have? Do you have hiring experience?
I have more than a decade of professional writing and business experience, which includes working as an award-winning daily newspaper reporter, working as a manager at a marketing and public relations firm, and owning this business. Additionally, I have my trusted recruiter associate to provide the perspective of a recruiter with 20+ years of experience recruiting for Fortune 500 companies. My career advice has been featured by Fast Company, Monster.com, CareerBuilder, Detroit Free Press, The Cincinnati Enquirer, and other major websites and media outlets.
8. Are there any “hidden charges” I should know about?
No. You will be aware of all fees before we start on your project; unlike some firms, I don’t charge exorbitant fees for simple things like file conversions.
9. Are you an accomplished and credentialed writer?
In 2013, a resume I wrote was nominated for an international resume writing award in the prestigious Toast of the Resume Industry (TORI) competition sponsored by Career Directors International. The competition draws entries from the top resume writers worldwide and is judged by distinguished industry veterans and past winners. My work has also been published in Resumes for Dummies, 7th Ed. (Wiley, 2015), Gallery of Best Cover Letters (JIST, 2012), and the forthcoming Modernize Your Job Search Letters (Emerald Career Publishing, 2016). As a journalist, I received seven awards and honors from regional and statewide contests for professional journalists over a three-year period.
10. How long, on average, do you spend on a resume for someone?
That depends on several variables, of course, but my projects typically range from 7 to 14 hours for the resume writing process alone (this isn’t including time for crafting LinkedIn content, cover letter, bio, etc.).
11. How much do you charge?
Typical investment levels in my strategic, high-ROI career packages vary based on services included and complexity. Each project is unique and entails a custom quote. You can learn more on my pricing page.
You’ll find that my rates reflect the sizable amount of time and effort that goes into my services, as well as the expertise I offer based on my experience and training, and the exceptional results that my clients routinely achieve. Keep in mind that a cheap resume isn’t cheap if you’re losing money every month because of being underpaid or on unemployment.
11. Who will handle my project?
You’ll be working with me (the owner) from start to finish, and you’ll get highly personalized attention. No outsourcing to India, no factory-style process.
12. Are there any hidden charges I should know about?
I won’t hit you with surprise fees for file conversions, and your investment will include up to five rounds of revisions (most companies include only two rounds). Only two clients (out of hundreds) in the past eight years have required more than five rounds of revisions.
13. Do you have expertise in incorporating keywords into resumes, and optimizing resumes for employers’ software?
Yes. I have gained extensive knowledge from working closely with a software company specializing in applicant tracking systems. I’ll explain to you why most resume writers’ claims about their “ATS-friendly” resumes are simply misleading.
14. How does the process work?
I’ll give you some homework, then we’ll have a detailed info gathering and strategy session (or series of calls), and then I’ll write the resume and make any revisions you want. After that, I’ll tackle the LinkedIn profile and any other documents in your package.
15. Will the content of my resume be original?
Every resume I write is a custom job, and I don’t use pre-written templates or resume writing software.
16. Do you specialize in my industry or profession?
I specialize in resume writing (and related services/products) for senior executives in most industries, as well as sales, healthcare, media, and the business side of technology. However, I’ve also helped clients land jobs in many other fields over the years, and I have written job-winning resumes for fields that I previously had no knowledge of. If your project is outside of my wheel house, I will let you know and refer you to a trusted industry colleague (ie., competitor).
17. Will you be there for me for the long haul?
Yes. As you begin looking for a job, I’d like us to stay in touch. You can always contact me with any questions along the way. After you land your new job, let me know, and I can help you with wording to update your LinkedIn profile. And then we can reconvene every year or two to update your resume with your latest accomplishments, keeping you ready at all times.
18. What do past clients have to say, and what results have they achieved?
I’ve helped clients land new positions, make more money, re-enter the workforce, and change careers. You can read recommendations that clients have written for me on my LinkedIn profile (you’ll need to be logged into your account), and I’ve also included most of these recommendations from LinkedIn on my website, too.