Who can you turn to in these trying times?
There are options aplenty when you’re writing your resume, so which resources are best for resume help? This is a bit more abstract than our typical articles, but hopefully it’ll provide some insight and help you along in the resume-writing process. So, what are the pros and cons when thinking about who you should reach out to for help? Let’s see.
This can go a few ways. If your family tends to prop you up and is super positive about everything you do, asking them for brutal feedback on your resume may not be the best choice. Let me make this clear - nothing is more amazing than a truly supportive family, but if the feedback you get is “Wow that looks great!” or “Great job,” you might want to exercise other options. If your family is really, really honest with you, that’s better. They’ll know you won’t take their feedback personally, you’ll want as harsh critiques as possible.
A key thing to remember is that you have to take the professional expertise of your family into account - if your uncle is a physical therapist, he might not be able to give you industry secrets on a slick finance resume. This is true of everyone though - don’t ask people without the right expertise for specific questions, it’s only frustrating for both parties.
This is also a dangerous game. I don’t know about you guys but there are very few people in my friend group who I can actually give my resume to and expect serious feedback. Secondly, you’re lucky if you have friends who are resume experts and you probably won’t be on this site. In reality, though, your friends are a huge resource - your peers are the ones who are in tune with industry trends, current resume styles and language, and so on. Basically, your friends give you a massive opportunity to contrast possibly more traditional advice coming from elders and family, which allows you to take the best of both worlds.
Your professional network.
Let’s start off by saying it’s probably not a good idea to give your resume to coworkers or your boss for a critique - you might as well walk around with a sign that says ”Hey, I think I can get a better job” around your neck. As much as I’m a fan of power moves, don’t make this one. That being said, people you know in similar fields or in your industry can absolutely give you helpful feedback on your resume, especially people in HR. They’re the ones recruiting and so they know what makes a good resume, and more importantly, what gets you an interview.
As an aside, it’s not that hard to send your resume around without raising red flags at your own job. An email to someone you know well who you actually think can give good feedback is easy enough to send - just say you’re “looking to update your resume to reflect your most current and applicable roles” of that you want to “bounce some formatting/content ideas” off your contact. People are generally pretty nice, so don’t be afraid to take that step. Remember though, always return the favor in one way or another - buy them lunch or coffee, maybe help them out with something they need, whatever. That’s the Golden Rule!
HR Experts or Career Consultants.
Let’s start this off by saying you need to have some disposable income for this option. To be clear, in this section I’m talking about having another human individually work with you to review and edit your resume - basically a career coach. I am not talking about online review sites - that will come next. Anyway, a good career consultant that will simply provide their expertise to help you build your resume will cost *upwards of $400. It sounds expensive, but remember - building your resume is not an expense, it’s an investment. If that freshly-optimized resume gets you a job that pays $10,000 more per year, it’s safe to say you made the right choice.
The only negative I have to mention about this option is the cost. Otherwise, it’s one of the best things you can do to boost your career - the people who do this literally improve people’s resumes and get them jobs for a living. It’s their job, and if you pay for a high-end resume consultation, you’re more than likely going to get quality work.
Scour the internet.
As you’re sitting here reading this blog post, it seems like this is exactly what you’re doing. Believe it or not, this entire blog is composed of articles to help you take your resume to the next level. Literally every article except for maybe like 5 are about resume/career building, so take a look! Here are some of our broader guides on resumes:
There are also tons of more nitty-gritty articles, feel free to check them out! Use the tags feature to sort by the things you need the most help with. Anyway, there are tons of other sources of information out there so get to searching!
In addition to just reading up on what you should do, there’s also many different online services out there that can help with resume formatting. There are much fewer who actually review the content, and even less that actively edit your resume - all online. Here at Backlight we aim to solve that problem. We use artificial intelligence to build and optimize your resume, then have resume experts give it a once-over to fine tune all the details.
Think about it - it’s not an easy process. There are a lot of mistakes to be made and it’s not easy to get it right, and the statistics back us up. In a survey of university students at a top 15 school in the country, 79.7% of students replied that it took them up to four weeks to get a work-ready resume, and 66.2% of students surveyed ranked their resume as the first or second most important contributor to their success during the recruitment process. Let us handle the hassle for you! We want to provide a level of service that rivals independent career consultants while charging 1/10 of the price. Feel free to check out our main site!