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OT: Resume Writing Services for IT Professionals - Recommendations?

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eugenefl

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Greetings all.

I'm entering a very familiar role again - the job hunt. With the number of positions I've held in my short 12 year career, my resume is starting to look like Swiss cheese and the previous work history scrolls off of the first page.

I'm looking for recommendations on resume writing services that can essentially do a fresh re-write of my resume given the information on my existing excuse of a resume. I'm in the technology field (IT Work) and would prefer a service that is tailored more to that discipline. If you have any personal experience with outsourcing this work to a company, please feel free to recommend them.

Thanks all,

Eugenio
 

eugenefl

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PS - Google turns up many sites that offer this service, but to me it's like wandering from used car lot to used car lot - you never know what you're going to get. Referrals from personal experience appreciated.
 

jorpet

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No recommendation on someone else to re-write your resume, but one for you. If you have a lot of different jobs in a short time period (12 years is short to me :eek:) you should probably change your resume style from listing positions to listing skills. This is particularly important if you are posting your resume online.

Figure that when you post an online resume the first screening is not done by humans. The company matches your resume up against a keyword search and is scored. Then it is kicked out if selected for a person to scan. Grouping your skills will work much better since that is where your strenght is going to be.

So list each platform you have worked with (Windows, Unix, Mac, etc.), the languages you have worked with and the different tools. Then anyone or any machine can quickly match your skill set to their needs.

I know that doesn't really answer your request, but hope it helps. Even when I switched to consulting a while back they didn't rewrite my existing resume, only reformatted it. You really need to own your resume since you will be talking about it in any interview.
 

eugenefl

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No recommendation on someone else to re-write your resume, but one for you. If you have a lot of different jobs in a short time period (12 years is short to me :eek:) you should probably change your resume style from listing positions to listing skills. This is particularly important if you are posting your resume online.

Figure that when you post an online resume the first screening is not done by humans. The company matches your resume up against a keyword search and is scored. Then it is kicked out if selected for a person to scan. Grouping your skills will work much better since that is where your strenght is going to be.

So list each platform you have worked with (Windows, Unix, Mac, etc.), the languages you have worked with and the different tools. Then anyone or any machine can quickly match your skill set to their needs.

I know that doesn't really answer your request, but hope it helps. Even when I switched to consulting a while back they didn't rewrite my existing resume, only reformatted it. You really need to own your resume since you will be talking about it in any interview.
I'm on my 9th job in 12 years. I have a section of my resume that is nothing but skills specifically formatted for skills matching on searches.

Twice I've had hiring managers actually talk to me off of my resume. I didn't get either of those jobs. The jobs that I have landed were more casual during the interview process - much like a conversation - and coincidentally, all came by referrals from others that have seen my work ethic. There were times when I'd get scenarios thrown my way, but again - very conversational like. I will typically ask very specific questions about the position, expectations, etc. and present solutions based on my experience and technical expertise. By now most managers can tell what I want, what I am looking for, or if I will fit the position they are hiring. Rarely do I go into an inverview overly anxious or with a sense that I'm going to lose something. It's somewhat of a blessing in disguise since I've gained confidence and gotten plenty of practice.

All good advice. I suppose I'm wanting for once to bail on having to do my own resume rewrite since it's never really done me any good. Some part of me thinks the formatting is wrong.

Thanks for the response.
 

AKPilot

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Eugenio, as a hiring manager and a private consultant I have to agree. You really must write your own resume - no questions about it! You can pay someone to "reformat" it for you, but it's a complete waste of money.

Things you need to determine are:

1) What job do you want?
2) What is the criteria for that skill set?
3) Find a suitable format; typically, Cover Letter, Objective, Summary of Qualifications, Experience, and Education/Credentials. Include, include, include key words and phrases at the bottom of your resume, in case an electronic search is done. I have literally seen it time and time again a candidate's resume getting pulled up, simply because they've used the right words
4) Be careful of differences between electronic and paper format
5) Leave all dates off, including previous employment history and education/graduation dates. This is probably the most typical mistake people make nowadays. Noone cares when you graduated from high school, or college. It can actually be used against you, as it can point to your age and can be, indirectly, used as a way of, unauthorized, discrimination towards offers and compensation. For example, a 40+ year old typically desires a higher salary & benefits than a 23 year old college grad.

I can't say I'm THE best expert, but I can say that I've helped many people get into positions or raise their status. Some here who have worked directly with me.

I can also tell you that typically, I may receive any where from 50 - 300+ resumes for a single position. I simply don't have time to read all resumes in full, for comprehension. I, and most of my other peers, typically scan them and look for keywords and phrases. Once we catch them, we review further. Hence, why I'm a huge proponent of using a "Summary of Qualifications".

I also read each and every cover letter in full, because of the emotional hook. It's my only look at the personality of a candidate; where a resume is typically black & white facts.

As you may remember I'm a certified EEO counselor, and seperately have served been called upon as a Mediator & Arbitrator for the federal government and I know discimination is illegal on applicants. I also know that the burden of proof is on the applicant, not the the hiring organization - meaning you must fund/prove any allegations of discrimination.

Also, make sure you carry over a plethora of facts; figures, numers, stats, percentages, dollar amounts, etc. I want to know the impact your projects/work has.

Finally, remember a resume is only a ticket to the party - pure and simple. The party, where you can prove yourself, begins when you enter the room for the actual interview.

Wishing you the best!
 

Zeus-cat

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I won't disagree with you AKPilot since you are a professional in the hiring field and I am not. But I will say that some people have no sense of how to write a resume. You can show them and tell them what they need to do and they produce something completely different. And they won't know they didn't do what you told them.

Case in point; I just helped a friend of mine with his resume. To put it bluntly, his first attempt was awful. I read the 2 page monstrosity and just shook my head. I walked into his office and told him part of what he had written was useable, but the rest had to go. I proceeded to rip the top of page 1 off, keeping his name and address, and threw the rest in the trash.

I told him a resume is an ad that is meant to sell you with the sole purpose of getting you an interview. I know you have an interview already set up and they already have said you are the top prospect for the job, but this resume is terrible. You may not want the job once you talk to these guys. You really want out of your current job so get a good resume worked up. The school he got his MBA from offered a resume service for under $100. I told him to jump at it. He did. We reviewed the finished product and it was decent, but needed pumping up. Two of us plus my friend sat down and word-smithed the resume and whipped it into shape.

My friend's biggest problem was that he spent years in the military writing tech manuals and then in private industry worked on repair manuals for aviation products. He could write technical stuff all day long, but resumes were not his cup of tea. His resume would always be a festering pile of dung if he did not get outside help.
 

AKPilot

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Something I saw this past month that just blew my mind away was getting a candidate's resume that was 10 (ten) pages long. :y: The longest I've ever seen, by far.

Needless to say, there was sooooo much information to sort through I simply didn't have time to review it properly. He wasn't called in for an interview.

To be honest, it should be a struggle to get it down to two-typed pages. Or, in the case of electronic resume, whatever the applicable word count is - to include a cover letter.

Never, ever, ever, forget a cover letter!
 

Zeus-cat

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Something I saw this past month that just blew my mind away was getting a candidate's resume that was 10 (ten) pages long. :y: The longest I've ever seen, by far.
My guess is they were in the military. I have seen resumes from people who were career military and it seems they put in every task at every assignment. When you tell them to cut it down to just the important stuff, they tell you they already did. I was in the USAF for six years and saw a more than a few of those.
 

AKPilot

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My guess is they were in the military. I have seen resumes from people who were career military and it seems they put in every task at every assignment. When you tell them to cut it down to just the important stuff, they tell you they already did. I was in the USAF for six years and saw a more than a few of those.

Actually it wasn't a vet. It was for an IT-type.
 

troj

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10 pages????

Somebody doesn't comprehend the idea of distilling it down to the important details.

Needless to say, I'd have doubts about their communication skills in the workplace!

But then, in the IT world (which is what I'm in), there are lots of folks who are solid technically but cannot communicate for squat. That limits the roles you can put them in.

-Kevin
 

Zeus-cat

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Actually it wasn't a vet. It was for an IT-type.
Someone in a technical field would have been my second quess. And the problem is you can't tell them they are doing it wrong.
 
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