A quick Google search for “resume services” yields more than 2.3 million results.
The reality is, there are so many people claiming to be resume writers that it can be hard to know who to trust.
Rather than searching through hundreds of resume writers on LinkedIn ProFinder, we’ve created this guide to make your life easier.
Resume writing services provide assistance with…you guessed it...Resume Writing!
The trouble is, these services come in all shapes and sizes.
It's important to know the differences between what these services offer.
For the purpose of this article, we’ll break down resume writing services into three main categories:
- Resume Builders
- Resume Mills
- Resume Experts
Keep reading as we explain the differences between these categories.
What Are Resume Builders?
Resume Builders are online applications designed to walk you through the process of creating your resume.
These computer programs usually include a variety of resume designs/templates to choose from and fill out.
With Resume Builders, you won’t be working with a human to craft your resume. It will be entirely up to you.
The good news is, these are the lowest cost solutions when it comes to resume services.
Check out our complete guide on the 10 Best Online Resume Builders.
What Are Resume Mills?
Resume Mills are large volume resume service providers who work with hundreds of contractors across the U.S. and often outside of the U.S.
These types of resume services cater towards a massive volume of clients making their writers generalists, more often than not.
Unlike resume builders, Resume Mills will have actual humans working on the development of your resume.
Resume Mills are typically the lowest cost solution for those who prefer to have a real human working on their resume.
What Are Resume Experts?
Resume Experts are individuals who provide unmatched quality when it comes to resume writing.
Unlike resume builders and resume mills, Resume Experts typically spend a good chunk of time on their resume services.
If you are a senior-level executive or if you are applying to a highly competitive role, it might be worth hiring a Resume Expert.
Resume Experts have years of experience writing resumes at a professional level and demand the highest compensation for their work.
We’ve created this graphic to help display some of the key differences between resume builders, resume mills, and resume experts.
The cost for a resume service can range drastically.
We’ve done our best to compile data from a variety of resume builders, resume mills, and resume experts to bring you the following costs.
Here’s how much a resume service will cost:
- Resume Builders range in cost from $5 - $15 per month.
- Resume Mills range in cost from $150 - $350 per resume.
- Resume Experts range in cost from $500 - $1,200 per resume.
If you have the time and know-how, there’s no doubt that a resume builder is the most affordable option.
That’s why so many people choose to make their own resume.
Check out our complete guide on making a resume from scratch.
However, if you lack time, or you’d prefer to leave the work to an expert, resume builders may not be your best choice.
The reality is, using a resume service may not be necessary for everyone.
So, let’s talk about that…
Should you hire a professional resume writer?
Here are five of the top reasons to hire a professional resume writer:
- Your resume is more than 5-years old.
- Your resume is not landing you interviews.
- You are applying to a highly competitive role.
- You have never created a resume before.
- Your resume is not ATS compatible.
There are dozens of reasons to hire a professional resume service, but there are also a few good reasons NOT to hire a writer.
Resume writers are not miracle workers.
You should not hire a resume writer with the expectation of landing 10x more interviews.
The reality is, some people just don’t need to hire a professional resume service.
Here are five of the top reasons to avoid hiring a professional resume writer:
- Your resume was recently rewritten (give it some time before assuming it’s not working).
- Your resume is landing you interviews at least 10% of the time.
- You are happily employed and don’t plan to job search.
- You have a background in resume writing and can do it yourself.
- You are applying to a job that does not require a resume.
If you associate with any of the reasons above, then you are in luck! You may not need a resume service after all.
And the winner of the best resume writing service award goes to…
The reality is, the “best” resume service is the one that meets all of your needs, given your unique situation.
Everyone is different.
If you are a recent college graduate, you may have success saving your money and using a resume builder.
If you simply need a resume as a technicality, but you already have the job, a resume mill may be perfectly equipped to get that job done.
If you are a manager, director, VP, or higher, hiring a resume expert could be a worthy investment.
Ask yourself the following questions to determine which resume writing service is best for you:
Do I feel confident writing a resume myself?
Answer: Yes – Consider a resume builder.
Answer: No – Consider a resume mill or resume expert.
What’s my budget?
Answer: <$100 – Consider a resume builder.
Answer: >$100 – Consider a resume mill or resume expert.
Is my background unique and complex?
Answer: Yes – Consider a resume expert.
Answer: No – Consider a resume builder or resume mill.
Are the roles I am applying for highly competitive?
Answer: Yes – Consider a resume expert.
Answer: No – Consider a resume builder or resume mill.
Hopefully, these questions give you a good idea of the type of resume service you should be using.
Once you’ve figured that out, you can try to determine the best resume service for you.
Finding the best resume builder is like finding a needle in a haystack.
Luckily, we have taken the time to compile our opinions on who we believe to be some of the best resume builder services.
You can read our complete guide on the best resume builders here.
Resume mills can be even more difficult to filter through than resume builders.
Considering these services are a step-up from resume builders and also a larger financial commitment, it’s important to make a great decision.
Here are some of the best resume mills:
You can read our complete guide on the best resume mills here.
Resume experts are a dime a dozen. At least that’s what a quick LinkedIn search for “resume writer” would tell you.
With more than 1,097,874 results for “resume writer” on LinkedIn alone, there’s no shortage of people out there claiming to be experts.
Rather than filtering through the masses, we’ve narrowed this list down for you.
Here are some of the best resume experts:
- Find My Profession (that’s us!)
- The Writing Guru
- Great Resumes Fast
- An Expert Resume
- Mary Elizabeth Bradford
Keep in mind, the above experts are some of the best in the business and their pricing reflects that. If you are a senior-level leader, the services above will be perfect for you.
You can read our complete guide on the best expert resume services here.
Finding a local resume writer can be tough.
So much of the work these days can be done virtually (from a computer) that most writers do not accept in-person visits.
However, there are still a handful of locally available resume writing services to choose from.
Here are some of the top cities for resume services:
Search through more than 500 cities to find the best local resume writer here.
Believe it or not, there are a handful of free resume writing services on the market.
Here are some excellent and free online resume builders:
Here are some excellent and free resume review sites:
You can read our complete guide on the best free resume review sites.
When it comes down to pulling the trigger and hiring a resume service, it can be difficult to know whether or not you are making the best choice.
Being resume experts ourselves, we've discovered the three most important questions you should ask your resume service, before submitting your payment.
But first - it's important to do this over the phone. Call the resume service(s) that you plan to hire and speak with a person directly.
Was it easy to get this company on the phone? If so, that's a good sign. If not, we're not off to a great start.
Once you have your selected resume service on the phone, ask the following questions:
- How many years of experience does my resume writer have?
- Have they ever written resumes for someone in [fill in the blank] industry/job type?
- How many rounds of edits are allowed with my writer?
While there are dozens of other questions you can ask, we've found that these three pretty much cover everything.
If you find a writer with more than a couple years of experience, who has written resumes for someone like you, and that is willing to make edits until you are happy, you really can't go wrong.
Additional Questions to Ask Your Resume Writer
If you are like me, and you love asking a million questions, you might appreciate these additional questions that you can ask your writer.
- Can you provide me with a resume sample of someone in a similar line of work?
- How confident are you in your abilities to complete my project successfully?
- Do you offer any sort of satisfaction or interview guarantee?
- Will I have unlimited direct contact with my writer (phone, email, etc.)?
- Is my writer a native English speaker based in the U.S.?
- How many other resumes will my writer be working on while creating mine?
- Will my resume be Applicant Tracking System (ATS) compatible?
If the service you choose can get through all of these questions without disappointing, there's a good chance you have found yourself a perfect match.
There is a lot of buzz around "Applicant Tracking Systems" these days.
And rightfully so.
Applicant Tracking Systems, or ATS for short, are computer programs used by hiring companies to store, filter, and organize their applicants.
The reason this matters to you is that some resumes are ATS compatible, meaning that they will easily be read and stored while other resumes are not ATS compatible.
A resume that is not ATS compatible may have issues with online job applications. Your resume can be rejected by the ATS and/or your information can be scrambled.
Ensuring that your resume is Applicant Tracking System compatible is an absolutely crucial point in this modern age.
You might be wondering, why would someone create a resume that is not ATS compatible on purpose?
Some people prefer an element of design to their resume for aesthetic appeal.
For example, most boxes, charts, and graphs on resumes are not considered ATS compatible.
Can you tell which resume below is ATS compatible and which one isn't?
Believe it or not, the resume on the left (or top if you are on a mobile device) is not ATS compatible.
Whether you decide to use a resume builder, resume mill, or resume expert, you can test if your resume is ATS compatible or not.
Jobscan has developed a top-rated resume scanning software to see how you rank in the eyes of an Applicant Tracking System (ATS).
All in all, we hope you found this guide to be not only comprehensive but also very valuable.
Above, we've shared dozens of resources with the goal of helping you make an informed decision when choosing a resume service.
If you still aren't sure what to do, feel free to give us a call.
Our team of dedicated career professionals at Find My Profession would be more than happy to address any of your questions or concerns.
Find out why we are a top-rated expert resume service trusted and reviewed by hundreds of professionals just like you.