If you want to get ahead of the hordes of other people trying to get the same job as you, you really need to very carefully consider if you should use a certified professional resume writer.
Catriona Watt, Principal, CV Saviour
I’m sure you’ve heard a lot of great things about using professional resume writers – laser focused eye-catching documents, how they genuinely want to help you get the job of your dreams, the phone ringing off the hook for interviews after you’ve sent your professionally written resume out … the list goes on.
If there are many reasons why you must engage a professional to write you the resume you need to get the job you want, there are just as many reasons to convince you not to. And yes, this is a bold statement to make, and I know some of you will get giddy with excitement at the thought, but I’m going to suggest that you forget paying a certified professional resume writer to do the job for you – it’s a total waste of time. Here’s why:
1) You’ll spend a LOT of time on the phone.
That constantly ringing phone from recruiters or potential employers can get really annoying. Once that phone starts ringing, you have to answer it, right? Alright, we can’t guarantee that this will be the case every time, but a great resume will get attention (hopefully the right sort) and can often lead to a rapid increase in calls from recruiters.
Nonetheless, that can be really annoying, and such a total waste of time.
2) It takes time. A lot of time.
Who has 7-10 days to wait for a resume? A professional resume writer will try and tell you that the actual writing of your resume takes 5 – 7 days before it goes to proof-reading (another day lost) and QA (yet another day), and with everything taken in account, it can take up to 10 days to get your documents. How many people does it take to write a resume? Apparently at least 3 if you want it done properly.
Total waste of time.
3) You learn heaps of things you never knew you didn’t know.
You’ll learn so much your head could almost explode. Who knew that, more often than not, a computer reads your resume before a real person? Who knew that employers don’t actually really care what your career objective is? Who knew that you shouldn’t use tables, headers, logos or footers or other rather snappy formatting tricks on your resume in case ATS can’t read the content in them? Who knew there are over 200 types of ATS programs out there for your perfectly crafted career documents to get caught up in? Your head will positively swim from the information overload you get from a certified professional resume writer because actually, some of them are rather clever, and generally always pretty happy to pass on all that knowledge.
Sometimes, it’s best just not to know, keep sending out hundreds of applications that you never hear anything of again, and keep that head of yours buried in the sand, right?
4) You’ll have to think about things in ways you’ve never done before.
You’ve done dozens of things at work, and they’re easy to stuff into your resume and call achievements, right? Wrong. All of a sudden, if you work with a professional resume writer, they’ll start asking you to think about what the outcome was for all of those amazing things you’ve achieved. Apparently just listing what you did doesn’t cut it anymore, and so you’ll find yourself having to really think really hard about what you’ve done.
Who has time to do that?
5) You’ll have to put some effort in.
Just when you think you’ve found the perfect professional resume writer for you, they tell you that you need to do some work. “Wait a minute … isn’t that what I’m paying you for?”, you gasp! Well, a resume writer cannot make a silk purse out of a sow’s ear, so all of a sudden, you will get roped in to conjure up some information to help the writer.
It’s such an effort. Total waste of precious time.
6) Sometimes, they won’t help you, no matter how much money you can pay.
Now here’s a good one … The really good professional resume writers will tell if you if they can’t help you. True, this only happens when you already have a cracking resume. Or when you’ve done no re-training, no skills updates, never gone beyond the expectations of the job, never achieved anything at work, not contributed in any way to better yourself, your workplace, your job, employer, customers, clients or colleagues. A certified professional resume writer will not be able to help reposition you for your next career move in these instances. Apparently, turning up for the job on time just isn’t enough these days. A professional resume writer (and a recruiter) will tell you that’s what you get paid to do! If your certified resume writer cannot add value to your CV because you’ve not added value anywhere, they won’t help you, no matter how much you can pay.
7) They’ll try and up-sell you other products and services under the guise of ‘helping’ you.
So you reckon all you need is a resume, and all of a sudden, they’re trying to up-sell you a LinkedIn profile and a cover letter??? Excuse me? They’ll tell you LinkedIn is an important tool for job seeking. They’ll say that an increasing number of companies are using it to find candidates, post jobs and accept applications directly, and, because companies want to get to know someone before they hire them (and check out the company you keep), they will use it to informally vet you. They’ll tell you that an employer will say “Great, send me your CV,” and then they’ll turn around and Google you, and check you out on LinkedIn. As for cover letters, who really cares if 33% of recruiters weight them as heavily as they do the resume and the LinkedIn profile.
Who really needs an up-sell when all you need is a job, and quickly?
8) You could be left with too many choices.
What, with all those employers chomping at the bit to get a piece of you, you’ll be torn. You don’t need to have job options. You just need a job.
And any job will do, right?
9) It costs money, and a lot more than you think it would.
A certified professional resume writer will tell you that you get what you pay for. They’ll tell you that they spend a lot of time re-writing CVs for people who’ve used quick, cheap services like that self-proclaimed resume expert who advertises $75 resumes in 24 hours on Google and Gumtree. A certified professional resume writer will tell you that it can take up to 12 hours to write a great CV, before they even start on several rounds of edits, followed by professional proofreading and peer-review. And that’s before the one-to-one telephone interview and/or the development of detailed questioning of your experience to date, the keyword research, sector and market research, and the crafting of examples of your achievements and successes so that your CV stands out from the rest. They’ll tell you at least three professionals are involved in the construction, drafting, writing, proofing and peer-review of your new CV. Then they’ll tell you that they wouldn’t expect you to work for less than the minimum legal wage, and they will not either.
A professional resume writer will tell you that it’s no secret an outstanding resume can reduce the time spent on job searches, and help position you for a much bigger salary.
They’ll say, think about this way … “Assuming you work a 35 hour week, if your new resume helps land you a job that pays just $1 more an hour than what you’re on now, over the course of a year, that translates to a whopping increase of $1,680 gross. Imagine if your salary increased even more …?”
Whatever, right? You don’t want to waste your time with all that!
10) They’ll give you really confusing advice, and make you feel a bit silly.
After trawling the internet for hours trying to work out how to sort out your own resume, just when you thought you’d nutted out exactly how many pages your resume should be, in what font, and decided on a gorgeous colour scheme, they’ll advise something completely different. You’ll probably be told to do pretty much the opposite of what everyone else on the internet says to do. Then they’ll make you realise that almost everything you’ve spent hours researching was all about the US job market, and they’ll draw your attention to the fact that how they do things in US is actually really very different to how things are done here in Australia for the Australian job market.
Then you’ll discover that there are actually only 16 certified resume writers in Australia.
Well, that really was a total waste of time then, wasn’t it?
11) They’ll strip some of your proudest achievements out of your resume.
You might be really proud to be the local boozer’s beer chugging champion, or perhaps you’ve dined out for years on the story of the night you were awarded that bingo queen title, but a professional resume writer will strip those special moments right out from under your nose, and insist they have no place on your resume.
How dare they!
12) All those interviews can get really tedious.
I mean really, how much time do you actually have to traipse around town going from one interview to another?
Such a total waste of time.
CV Saviour is an Australian resume writing service. Just like our clients do, we take our jobs very seriously, but we like to have a bit of fun every now then. This is one of those of times.
On a more serious note though, every single one of our writers are certified professional resume writers, and have an undergraduate degree at a minimum. We make a point of that, because in Australia, it’s an unregulated industry, and anyone can hang their shingle and call themselves a resume writer. We also write rather smashing LinkedIn profiles (we think it’s ok for us to say that, because we were good enough to write them for one of the most selective educational institutions on the west coast of the USA. And yes, we might be Australian-based, but we do write for clients all over the world). We’re good like that.
As an aside, we use CV and résumé interchangeably because in the Australian job market, either is acceptable, and both are understood to be the same thing.
©CV Saviour 2015