When it comes to writing a new resume there are multiple avenues you can take to reach the same destination. Some are longer than others, some are cheaper and some are more expensive. Essentially, there are a few factors you should consider when making a resume. In no particular order, the three most popular ways to make a resume are:
- Copy a your friend or relatives resume or copy a sample from the Internet, replacing their information with your own.
- Using a piece of resume building software to be guided through the process of creating your own resume.
- Paying a professional resume writer to write your resume for you from scratch.
Now that we have highlighted the most popular ways to make a resume let’s break them down one-by-one and analyze the pro’s and con’s of each to help you decide which option is best for you.
Copying A Resume Sample
Most people create their first resume sometime between the beginning of high school and the middle of college, as summer vacations come and young people look for ways to earn their own money. Unfortunately, many high schools don’t cover the subject of resume writing so youth are often left to their own devices when trying to build their first resume.
As we’ve done from birth to adulthood the most natural way to learn something new is by simply copying someone else. This “monkey see, monkey do” mentality has served mankind well, allowing for basic survival information to be passed down through the ages. The process is pretty straightforward. Applicant asks older brother, father or mother for their resume in an editable format such as a word document. They then proceed to replace specific details with their own, until the resume becomes their own.
With a wide variety of resume samples and templates published around the web, the selection is large enough where most applicants can find a pre-written resume that they can edit for their own personal circumstance. These templates are usually free and allow intrepid young job seekers to hammer out a resume for themselves in a relatively small amount of time.
However, if you are planning to copy an existing resume you should be warned, there are disadvantages to this approach. First being, resumes are not a “one size fits all” affair, as just like the people they are describing, they come in all different styles and shapes, some better suited for different career levels or industries than others.
If a 17 year old is copying his banking executive father’s resume when applying to a waiter job at a local diner, it will probably be unnecessarily lengthy and detailed, as the two industries and career levels differ so radically they are almost completely documents. The key to a good resume is precision and customization, two things you don’t get by copying but you do get with the second option, resume building software.
Using Software to Build Your Resume
Another popular way to make a resume is to do so with the assistance of resume building software. There are many different software providers on the web, all of varying quality and prices, but they all operate on the same premise: to guide the user through the process of creating a resume. Using resume building software is simpler process than copying someone else’s resume, as the program does most of the heavy lifting and you only have to fill in fields, answer prompts and click on buttons to set the software to go about formatting a professional looking resume from scratch.
The quality of builders differs, depending on who developed the software. Some companies take a very basic and cheap approach, building programs that create very primitive resumes containing just enough information and style to create a “passable” resume. Other builders, like the one at resume maker at Resume Genius produce more detailed documents, with pre-written bullet point suggestions and a wide variety of styling options.
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So while resume software will create a much more detailed and focused resume with a fraction of the effort involved in writing your own from scratch, this does come at a price. Most resume builders will charge between $5-$40 dollars for full access to their toolset. Some offer lower introductory prices and others even offer free variants.
Depending on your career level, your financial restrictions and your time schedule, a resume builder is one tool in the job seekers arsenal. Still, for those with the budget there is even a more direct and hands-free way of getting a new resume, and that is to pay someone to write it for you from scratch.
Professional Resume Writers
If you don’t want to copy someone else’s resume and you don’t want to use resume building software you may want to consider hiring a professional resume writer to compose your resume for you. There are hundreds of thousands of professional resume writers in America who sell their services to job seekers, usually ranging from $50 to over $1,000. Some writers are retired Human Resources professionals who can craft resumes designed to impress HR managers specifically.
Additionally you can hire an official CPRW or “Certified Professional Resume Writer”, as these are people who have been officially certified to write resumes that adhere to stringent industry standards. The benefits of hiring someone to write your resume are numerous.
First, you can guarantee it will be far more customized than if you had copied a template from the Internet. Second, because it is a human crafting the document it will almost always be more detailed and personalized than if the resume was created robotically with a piece of software. Finally, the greatest benefit of using a resume writer is the convenience, requiring only basic information and job titles to get started.
This doesn’t mean the other two options can’t compare. If you are a naturally gifted writer or you copy a friend’s resume who is in a similar career stage and industry as yourself you can surely create a great looking resume. Likewise, inputting a little bit of thought into a resume builder tool will also create a beautifully formatted resume specific to you.
The potential downsides to using a resume writer are few, but include a few things including cost, reliability and time. Many writers charge hundreds of dollars to write executive level resumes, as they require more time and thus cost more than most entry-mid level resumes to write. Additionally, you have to do your research when choosing a resume writer to find one with a solid reputation for both outstanding service and quality. Finally, finding a writer who can complete your resume in shorter time than if you did it yourself with software will be a challenge. Still, with the right amount of time and large enough budget, using a reputable resume writer is a great way to make a quality resume.
While all three methods have their strengths and weaknesses it ultimately comes down to the job seeker when determining which avenue is best for them.
- High-schoolers, college students and those seeking entry-level part-time or summer jobs can probably get by just find using a basic template downloaded from the internet.
- College students and entry-level to mid-level professionals are probably better off using software to help them create a resume that is more personalized, detailed and refined than what they would get with just a generic template.
- Finally, seasoned veterans and executive level professionals might want to consider hiring a resume writer as they can work with you to tailor a unique resume that is perfectly tailored to their longer, more colorful career experiences accrued over the years.
We’re curious to know how you created your resume. Did you copy and older siblings or friends? Did you write your own resume from scratch? Let us know in the comments below and as always, please let us know if you have any questions about any of the 3 ways make a resume.