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How to start your own highly profitable resume writing service
HOW TO START YOUR OWN HIGHLY PROFITABLE RESUME WRITING SERVICE
Here's a business you can start for virtually nothing, parlay into a
million dollar enterprise in five years or less. Many established
resume writing services in the large metropolitan areas are
reporting annual incomes of $250,000 or more. Even the smaller
operations, in towns as small as 15,000 are experiencing sales of
$50,000 or more.
No special knowledge, education or experience are required for total
success in this business. An awareness of the general format of the
"modern resume," and the ability to keep oneself up-to-date on
refinements or new approaches to presenting resume material are
about the only prerequisites to successfully operate a resume
Probably the most exciting and motivational aspects of this business
idea are the low investment and risk factors involved, and the
growing demand for resume service. Up until the past couple of
years, few if any Americans really had to look for jobs. People in
general have either forgotten how to look for a new job, or never
knew how in the first place.
Since the start of World War II, back in 1941, the American worker
has been spoiled by an affluent society and an ideal market for the
job seeker. Usually, all he had to do whenever he lost a job or
wanted to change jobs was to report in to the local branch of his
local employment service office, check in at his union office, look
at the want ads in the Sunday paper, or call a few friends and ask
about job openings.
But no more! Times have changed! There are fewer jobs and an
increasing number of people applying for those jobs that are
available. Just recently, the post office department in a large
west coast city advertised that applications would be accepted on
two days only, for 600 upcoming openings. Would you believe that
twenty thousand applicants showed up to fill out applications? Can
you imagine the post office personnel people reviewing all those
applications, and then interviewing all those people, ac cording to
the fair employment practices act?
On another day, word got out that there was going to be an opening
for a forklift driver at a local warehouse. Fifteen hundred men and
women showed up even before the job was advertised!
Times are tough, and we're moving ever deeper into the age of
specialization. Employers are demanding to know more about the
applicant - his work record, natural talents and personality traits.
They want more information upon which to base their interview
selections than just the cold facts on the application form.
Personnel managers are placing a higher premium on their time, and
delegating to others the job of "weeding out" the unqualified
applicants from those whose backgrounds and goals come closest to
fitting the needs of the company.
To get in to see the person doing the hiring nowadays, the job
applicant has to "sell the short-stopper," and that calls for a
professionally written resume. More and more firms are demanding
resumes. Industry estimates are that by the year 2000, most of the
jobs worth having will require a written resume before even an
initial interview is granted. And that's where you can fit into the
picture with your Professional Resume Writing Service. Probably 80
percent of the people searching for jobs don't have a resume. Of
the 20 percent who do have resumes, many are ineffective; they
simply do not adequately present the applicant's total
Everyone - with or without a resume - is looking for this key: A
professionally written resume, a sales presentation of their
qualifications and experience that will get the job for them - the
job they want. The jobhunters are wound up in their own special
ties and problems. They don't know how, and they don't have the
time - AND they're willing to pay you to put it all together for
them. Just as you're willing to pay a doctor, dentist or investment
broker, those who need a resume are willing to pay you for this
service. The market exists in every city and town in this country,
and the demand for this service is growing daily. Your opportunity
for success beyond your fondest dreams has never been greater! The
brass ring is here! Grab it, and hold on!
In today's competitive environment, you'll need a computer and
preferably, a laser printer. You can begin, and perhaps get by for
a month or so, with a top quality typewriter, but do yourself and
your business a favor: Arrange to rent, lease or buy on monthly
payments if necessary, the best machine for the quality of work that
will command top dollars for you.
Setting up and operating from your own home will be the most
economical way to begin. In addition to your computer, you should
have a computer desk, typist's chair, adjustable long-arm lamp, and
a file cabinet. However, just as you can make do with a typewriter
for a month or so, you can get by for starters with a kitchen chair
at your dining room table.
To prepare yourself properly, invest in a good book on how to write
"job-winning" resumes. Select a book which discusses both the cover
letter and the format of the body of the resume.
The most important part of any resume package is the cover letter
the applicant sends as part of the resume. This letter states the
specific job the applicant is applying for, explains why he believes
he is qualified, and pointedly asks for an interview. In most
cases, you'll be able to provide an "all-purpose form letter" which
your client can adapt to any position that interests him. More
later about actual writing of the resume and the cover letter.
The format and style of the body of the resume are the items you
want to learn from your book. Resumes of today generally follow
3. City, state, zip.
4. Phone Number
5. Type of job or position wanted
6. Goals and/or desires in life
7. Job history, starting with current or last job held
8. Special courses, education or training completed
9. Military History
10. Formal Education
11. Activities while attending school: athletics, offices, awards
12. Hobbies and special interests
13. Notation that names of business and personal references will be furnished on request.
However, the "secret" is being able to get all this information
covered in TWO PAGES OR LESS.
Once you're organized with space and equipment, you're ready for
business. All that's necessary from this point on will be
advertising, client interview, and producing the final product.
Your advertising needs, in comparison with many other businesses,
need not cost you an exorbitant amount of money. It should,
however, be consistent and eye-catching.
You should contact your area's most widely read newspaper and
arrange to run a one-column by one inch ad every day for the next
six to twelve months. By purchasing your ad space on a daily
insertion basis, and over at least a six month period, your rate
will be much lower than the rate charged for shorter contracts.
Your newspaper ad might read something like this:
A Complete, Professional Service
MIDWEST RESUME SERVICE
Resumes - Letters - Portfolios
...that result in jobs!
Aside from an ad in the newspaper, and perhaps a similar one in your
area shoppers' papers, the only other advertising efforts you should
worry about are those that don't cost money - free bulletin board
announcements, radio and television talk show in-terviews, and low
cost flyers, circulars or brochures that describe your services.
One method of gaining business exposure which is most often
overlooked is the radio and television talk show interview. Call
the broadcast stations in your area and get the names of the
producers of these talk shows. Then write them a letter explaining
your services, and how you believe an appearance on their program
could be educational and beneficial to their audiences. Include a
brochure with your letter. A couple of days after you're sure
they've received your letter, give them a call on the phone, and ask
them to consider an interview with you.
Another area to explore for free publicity is as a guest speaker for
your civic clubs. For these, simply write out a speech emphasizing
the need for a resume, and the proper way to write one that will
result in a job for the job-seeker. Explain the growing trend of
employers to use the resume as a screening device, and the fact that
a well-written resume can get a better job for someone when there
are seemingly no openings. Don't be afraid to explain what goes
into a professionally written resume. Many of the people listening
to you - if you sell them on the idea of a resume - will come to you
to have it written because they don't have the time or know-how, and
because you'll have the reputation of an "expert" after having
spoken before their club. Basically, people are lazy in this
respect, and would rather pay someone else to do something than to
take the time to learn how and do it themselves. Once you spread
the word that you're in the business of preparing resumes for peop
le looking for work or wanting better jobs, you'll have no trouble
at all keeping busy!
Your brochure can be as simple as a Z-folded 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of
paper. It should describe your services, emphasize your
professionalism, fast service and reasonable cost. It would be best
to have your story typeset and laid out in three columns down the
width of the paper.
Most quick print shops can handle all this for you, at a nominal
cost. Once you've had your brochures printed, leave off a supply
with your area high school and college counselors, vocational and
trade school placement directors, and with as many private
employment agencies as will take them.
When prospective clients call you, simply explain your services and
prices, and set up an appointment for them to meet with you. For
this it's best to prepare a script, which might read like this:
YOU, answering the phone: Good morning! Midwest Resume Service.
May I help you?
CLIENT: Yes, I'm calling about your ad in the paper.
YOU: Oh yes, and thank you for calling. Let me explain our
services. We're professional resume writers - we interview job -
seekers such as yourself - learn the important features of their
backgrounds as those features apply in helping us to write a resume
that will land them the job they're looking for. Then we assemble
all this information into a winning presentation, type it out, give
you the original plus 50 copies and a cover letter (which you can
modify as necessary on your home typewriter and have copied each
time you submit a resume). Your cost is only $50, and usually we can
have everything ready for you within three or four days. Now, does
that sound like what you had in mind?
CLIENT: Yes! That's just what I had in mind. When can we get
together and start the ball rolling?
YOU: How about this afternoon at 3:15, or would tomorrow morning at
say 9:45 be better for you? We're located at 600 North Main Street.
Are you familiar with the area?
CLIENT: Yes, I know the area, no problem. This afternoon at 3:15
will be fine.
YOU: Good! Now, let me have your name and phone number please.
CLIENT: Gives you his name and phone number.
YOU: All right, Bob, we'll look forward to seeing you this
afternoon at 3:15.
You now have a client, and an appointment to interview him for
background information in order to put together a resume that can
result in a job for him. Be sure you're prepared with a
"researcher's questionnaire," to guide you in the questions to ask.
Type your resume format on a separate sheet of paper, numbering each
question you want an answer to, or subject you want to cover. This
of course serves as a "master" which you duplicate and use as the
researcher's questionnaire guide.
For each interview, take one of these "interview guides" and an
ordinary yellow legal tablet, and start asking questions. Identify
each page of notes with a number or subject matter from the resume
format, and use a separate page of the tablet for each subject and
each job the client may have had.
The interview should be relaxed, with the client doing most of the
talking. However, you should control the interview and take notes
as the client gives you the information you need. Be confident, but
friendly. Maintain your confidence and ask leading questions that
elicit complete, revealing responses. Take your time, and "listen"
to what the client isn't telling you as well as what he is telling
you. With a bit of practice, you'll be able to find out all there
is to know about your client in twenty minutes or less.
Look ahead to the day when you have employees working for you.
Develop your interviewing techniques to a state of maximum
efficiency for your business, and then record three or four
interviews for use in training your employees. You should also
reproduce several examples of completed resumes and put them into an
instruction book for study by new employees .
After the interview, you need to interpret your notes and type the
information into a resume. This should be easy because you have
gathered the details in sequence with your resume format.
Familiarity with format writing style makes the task of putting
everything into finished form quite simple.
At the very least, a quick course in resume writing will be
necessary. Check out a book on the subject from your public
library. The important thing to remember is to drop the "I's" and
write in a kind of note-taking reportorial style:
"Hired as an entry level shipping clerk. Recognized need for
organization on the loading dock to eliminate congestion. Suggested
designated spaces for incoming and out going shipments. This program
was adopted and immediately eliminated congestion of trucks and
decreased overtime requirements, with an estimated savings of $700
per week for the company. Promoted to Line Expeditor after six
Don't put a time limit on the amount of time you devote to each
client, but once you're organized and established, the interview
through the finished resume shouldn't take more than an hour or two.
After you have the resume typed, call the client in to check it over
and approve it. In almost every case, he'll be very favorably
impressed and ready to go with anything you suggest. The secret is
in the quality of your finished product - which starts with good
type, clean paper and error-free copy. The wonderful thing about
computers is that they will do all the work for you - layout, spell
checking, saving to a file and typesetting. If the client finds
something minor that needs to be changed, you can do it almost
instaneously while the client waits.
So, you explain to your client that his resume will make a more
favorable impression on the prospective employer when it is printed
on better quality paper. Suggest to him that you have it printed
for him on colored "offset" paper instead of ordinary bond. Ivory,
tan or blue shades are desirable. For the really expensive-looking
resume, suggest that it be printed on 11 x 17 paper, and then folded
in half to make a kind of "book" about the client.
The charges for your service should be about $50 - $75 for the
interview, original resume, 50 copies on white bond paper, and a
universal cover letter. For colored offset paper, or for 11 x 17
sized sheets, check current prices at your print shop. You should
pass those costs on to your client, plus a nominal service charge of
$5 or so. Also explain to your client that you can update or add to
his resume whenever the need arises, and for this service you charge
$10, plus the cost of printing as many copies as he requires.
Now for the cover letter - probably the most important part of any
resume submitted for job consideration. The first thing you ask
your client regarding the cover letter is if he intends to submit
his resumes in answer to advertised positions, or if he intends to
"shot-gun" them out to possible employers. According to his stated
plan, you simply use one of the two general forms for cover letters.
And that's it - the basics you need for starting your own highly
profitable resume service. A couple of things to always bear in
mind: Your success will be directly related to the quality of the
finished product you put out. Learn to do it right, and then strive
for perfection with every job you complete for a client.
Remember too that the image you project is the credibility rating
you'll carry with your customers. Shabby surroundings, a
disorganized office and a less than professional appearance will
doom you to failure. Be impressive! Keep your eyes open, and move
into an office among professional people as soon as you can.
Finally, put some real planning into starting your business; get it
well established and running smoothly; then hire other people to do
the work. The object of a business of your own is not steady
employment for you, but financial security and independence - to
achieve and enjoy the fruits of your labor. Plan your business,
nurture its growth and then hire other people to do the work while
you guide, supervise and make bank deposits.
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
SAMPLE COVER LETTER
IN RESPONSE TO AN ADVERTISED OPENING
Your recent ad, expressing a need for an experienced stock clerk,
has come to my attention. I'd like very much to get together with
you at your earliest convenience to discuss my qualifications for
With hopes for such a meeting in mind, I'm enclosing a copy of my
resume for your information and consideration.
I assure you that I am experienced, learn very quickly, and am
adaptable to new methods of operation. I have heard favorable
comments about your company as the place for one with ambitions for
growth and self-improvement .
I'm available to come in and meet with you at your convenience and
can begin work with only a short notice.
Thank you in advance for your time and consideration. A call from
you will be most welcome and appreciated.
/s/ Your signature Your Typed Name (123) 456-7890
* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *
SAMPLE COVER LETTER
FOR THE SHOT-GUN APPROACH WHERE NO KNOWN OPENING EXISTS
As a salesman, I have ambitions to improve my status in life.
Your company's reputation as a leader in the publishing of
educational materials impresses me, and I would like to explore the
possibilities of becoming a part of your sales force.
I'm currently a top-producing salesman, but feel stymied with my
present employment. I think I could do much better with a company
receptive to innovative ideas and energetic people such as myself.
Could we get together and discuss the possibilities of my joining
your organization in some capacity that would utilize my abilities
to a greater extent, and at the same time benefit your company?
I will be free from 10 o'clock on, next Tuesday, the 27th. Please
give me a call at (123) 456-7890.
Thank you! I am looking forward to meeting you.
/s/ Your signature Your typed name
PS: Enclosed is a resume that will give you an in depth look at my
accomplishments, and an idea of my potential. I appreciate your
time and consideration.
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