What’s It Worth

Have you ever gone to a nice restaurant expecting a great meal only to be disappointed? Either the food was mediocre or the service was crummy or the atmosphere was not satisfactory – something simply did not justify the high cost of the meal. On the flip side, have you ever stopped at a roadside, mom-and-pop style restaurant with no expectations other than to satisfy the rumblings of your stomach, only to be surprised by great fare, warm service, and great prices? It makes you wonder what you are paying for, sometimes.

Purchasing a resume development can be like that. It is very important that you understand what you are getting, the quality you can expect, and that you will receive the results you desire when deciding on a resume firm. Over the past five years, resume services have popped up all over the place on the Internet. Anyone claiming to be an “expert” can hang out a virtual shingle and start taking on clients. Every major job board now has a resume service built into their offerings. Some of the new services are very inexpensive and some are outrageously expensive. But, like the restaurant analogy above, do you know what you are getting for your money? Is it a value or is it just an expense? It’s hard to tell from just looking at the menu.

There are several items that you can evaluate ahead of time to determine if the resume service is the right one for you.

– Length of time in business. Search for a firm that has been in business for a long time. This shows that they are not a new, fly-by-night resume mill that has sprung up with the advent of the Internet.

– Staff. Who is on the staff of the firm? What are their credentials? Are they qualified? How long have they been writing resumes? A good firm will have certified writers (CPRW, NCRW) who have excellent experience in marketing clients, who belong to career industry professional organizations, who care about their continuing education, and who write as a full-time occupation. Staff members will also have won industry awards or have been published in career books.

– Price. A good firm will probably have prices for services that are mid-range or above. That highly qualified writers mentioned above don’t write for minimum wage. And with the continued downward slide of the writing skills of the general public, their skills are becoming more and more in demand. Higher demand equals higher wages.

– Guarantee. Most reputable resume firms will also guarantee their work.

– Strong affiliations. Look for a firm that works with high-end recruiting firms and industry organizations. These organizations generally don’t allow their names to be affiliated with poor service providers.

– Responsive. A good firm will be responsive to their clients. Resume development times vary but a good resume usually takes a minimum of three to five business days to develop a first draft. If a service claims a turnaround time of 24 hours, be wary. Resume development takes a lot of strategy and think-time. Quicky service usually means poor results.

– No templates. A good service will not use plug-and-play templates for your resume. You are individual and your resume should be also.

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