There are so many awards & credentials – what do they mean and what should I look for?
The Certified Master Resume Writer (CMRW) credential is the absolute gold standard in worldwide resume certification. After obtaining the Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW) designation, a pre-requisite for challenging the CMRW, I chose to aim for the pinnacle of the profession and secure the CMRW which I did at my first attempt. I also secured an award for the most fiercely contested category (Best Executive Resume) at the TORI Awards (gold standard in international resume writing awards) on my first ever submission to that category.
In my second submission to the Best Executive Resume category, I received yet another nomination along with 4 of the world’s best resume writers from the USA and Australia. In doing so, once again I was the only resume writer flying the flag for Canada in the Best Executive Resume category of the most prestigious resume writing competition in the world.
If you see awards or certifications listed, ask about them! Are the awards/certifications issued by someone who has self-certified themselves? Which organization is behind the awards/certifications? How many people were nominated? The Career Directors International TORI Awards are the international gold standard in this industry and are fiercely contested by writers from around the world.
What should I look for in a resume writer?
To keep things simple, you should be looking for 3 things;
1) The Owner – You should be working with the owner of the company. Many resume writing companies use the owner as nothing more than a figurehead to attract business and then outsource your project to anonymous ghost writers with unknown credentials or expertise. If you are going to engage a professional resume writer at all, make sure you get to work one-on-one with the owner of the company in order to leverage their expertise for your project.
2) Employment History – Ask about the employment history of the resume writer. If you are looking for a resume/career expert, would you seek to partner with someone with a limited work history or would you rather seek out someone who has ran an employment agency, managed national and international search assignments for Fortune 500 companies, engaged hiring managers and executives on a daily basis, and made a living from sourcing job candidates and crafting resumes to impress the HR and executive teams in corporations of all sizes? The choice of course is yours and you will select the writer you believe can offer more to your project.
3) Certification – Make sure the resume writer has certification and professional credentials from a reputable association. The two most respected and recognized associations in North America are the PARW/CC and Career Directors International (CDI). Certification is a baseline level of competence and can be used to filter out non-qualified writers and act as a starting point for selecting a writer based on their level of expertise and industry-related work experience, insights, and expert knowledge they can bring to your project.
Do I have to fill out a questionnaire or worksheet?
Absolutely not. These worksheets can take upwards of two hours to complete. I don’t hide behind a questionnaire/worksheet as my consulting background and expertise gives me the opportunity to collect all of the information I need during our consultation. You’re paying me to do a job for you. I wouldn’t dream of asking you to do this part yourself.
Am I guaranteed to get a job if I use your resume writing service?
No. There are many factors at play in the recruitment process and it’s not possible to guarantee that you’ll get the job you want just by using a resume writing service. Internal candidates, better qualified candidates, market conditions, expected salary levels, and personal preferences all come into play when hiring a candidate. On top of that, if you’ve had 6 jobs in as many years, you don’t represent a sure or safe investment for an employer. Of course there are certain strategies we can employ to focus attention on your unique value proposition, however a resume is not a magical artifact. It can only be as good as you are.
What is your turnaround time?
Typically 5 business days depending on my schedule and personal circumstances. There is a rush order service available at additional cost for close call deadlines. The rush order service has a 2-business day turnaround post consultation (if available).
Do you only offer evening or weekend appointments?
No, this is my full-time job.
Which companies did you conduct recruitment campaigns for?
The companies I have partnered with over the years include: Alberta Health Services, Shell, Chevron, Encana Corporation, Teck, Fluor, IBM, Finning International, Intrawest Corporation, Deutsche Bank, HSBC, Ernst & Young, Raytheon, Diavik Diamond Mines, McKesson, Cisco Systems, Honeywell International, GrowthWorks, Diageo PLC, Miramar Mining, and many, many more.
How do you determine your client satisfaction rate?
I calculate my satisfaction rate based on the fact that I work with every client (within the 2 week post consultation window), until they are 100% satisfied with their resume and/or cover letter. This is further reflected by my client testimonials and the sheer volume of repeat and referral business I receive.
What are your prices?
I am a pioneer of upfront pricing in this industry. My prices can be seen here. Unlike some competitors who prefer to conjure up a number based on how much they think you can afford, you’ll be able to determine your total cost by reviewing my 3-tier pricing structure.
Do you offer refunds?
After the telephone consultation has taken place, there will be no refunds under any circumstances. As a one-person writing operation, my time is precious, and as such I need to be compensated for it.
Are you a legitimate business?
Yes. I’ve been doing this for many years. Docherty Career Management Inc. is a federally incorporated business. Corporation # 713886-5. I am also a member in good standing of Career Directors International.
Why do you cost less than some writers with less experience than you?
Good question! Wherever you see the term “our writers” on a website, there is a good chance that you won’t know who is actually writing your resume. In my experience, such companies utilize the owner as a figurehead to attract business. For that, he/she wants a fee. Then there is the actual writer (whoever that is), and they also want a fee, so you end up paying more.
Other than that, there is the question of competence and/or efficiency. A less experienced writer will take longer to produce a document. Of course, they expect to be compensated for the time it takes them to write your documents. Why should you pay more for the learning curve of a less experienced writer?
Then there is the question of business set-up. I work smart to save you money. I won’t ask you to pay for swanky downtown offices, the receptionists to staff them, the marketing budget to promote them, the writers to write the documents, or the people who don’t follow through with gimmicks like a “free resume review”.
Finally, there is the question of prestige. Some people think that charging 1% of your target salary suggests quality. I think it suggests the service is too expensive.
What advantages do you hold over other writers?
There are numerous advantages to working with me over other writers. You are not just hiring a writer. My background in recruiting, executive recruiting, and boutique recruitment consultancy ownership gives me an incomparable insight into the hiring methods and desires of leading employers on two continents.
When we have our consultation, you will have a unique opportunity to ask for expert advice about the best way to market yourself to an employer, what they really look for, how they score your interview, or perhaps why you’ve not been successful in your job search thus far. An opportunity like this doesn’t present itself often. To test that theory, try booking some time with an executive recruiter to discuss your career goals and ambitions.
I am uniquely placed to understand the hiring practices of many leading employers ranging from leading multi-national corporations to innovative, forward thinking owner-managed businesses. I understand what they look for in a resume, a job applicant, and an interview and I can apply this knowledge to your project giving you an unrivalled totality of service not readily available in the resume writing industry. Unless the other writer can lay claim to having this same level of experience, I believe that job seekers who choose to partner with me will have a significant advantage.
I am often asked to re-write documents that have been “professionally done” and which never truly held much prospect of success. The experience I have cannot be acquired by taking an online course.
Further, you may notice that other writers have taken my lead by copying my text, association partnerships, and pricing policy. Why work with an imitator when you can work with the originator?
Did you write resumes as a recruiter?
Yes, of course!
According to a record of my detailed daily activity logs, I have reviewed over 30,000 resumes and conducted over 4,500 job-seeker interviews as a recruiter/executive recruiter with David Aplin Recruiting and Robert Half International, and as a boutique recruitment consultancy owner and professional resume writer.
In addition to partnering with the hiring company to advise on the development of detailed job specifications and actively source candidates, I was required to conduct detailed behavioral interviews with each applicant to uncover hidden skills, abilities, or potential problems with their application.
I then used this information to develop a highly-engaging resume to impress even the most intransigent of hiring managers. Unlike an HR manager who merely responds to applications, or a typical career advisor dealing with low level/unskilled people and the habitually unemployed, I had to uncover skills, collect information, and develop documents that impressed hiring managers in order to make a placement. I know of no other full-time resume writer with this background providing these services in this market!
For FAQ or further information about my pricing schedule or resume service offering, feel free to view the Buy Now tab above.
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There are 4 pricing tiers based on your level of experience and 3 package options in each tier- ‘Basic’, ‘Silver’, and ‘Gold’.
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“1 hour. That’s how long it took from the time I received my resume from Ken to the time the recruiter for the position I was most interested in called.
Had a chat with her, she recommended me to the client and I got the job!
Take the rest of the day off. You’ve earned it! “
“Highly recommended. I always had problems with interviews, so I called Ken and booked an appointment.
Ken helped me focus on what was important and made me more aware of myself and my unconscious little blunders, so I could correct them.
He is friendly and funny, and full of constructive criticism.
I was the successful candidate for the job he helped me prepare for, which is my ultimate dream job!
Thank you Ken!”
“Ken did an amazing job on my resume and cover letter. He got everything ready for me within 2 days and just in time for the deadline.
He payed very close attention to everything I told him and put together a flawless piece.
First place I applied, I landed an interview with.
His work is definitely worth every penny.”
“My experience has been nothing short of fantastic.
I have received interview calls within a week of my posting the resume drafted by Ken. (I had been trying for almost 8 months before that without any success whatsoever)
“I engaged Ken to write an executive resume after being let go from my last role due to the economy. Ken took the time to fully understand my skills, accomplishments, unique value proposition, and put it all together in hard-hitting and highly impactful document.
I recently secured a wonderful role and I do not underestimate the part your work played in this. Thank you Ken for making this process easy for me.
I have referred you to my network and will continue to do so.”
“Excellent service!!! Ken really took the time to understand my previous roles along with skills and accomplishments. I was so impressed with the final results and had an interview for 2/3 jobs I applied for within 48 hours of applying (after receiving zero responses for almost a year).
I will be using Ken again to update my resume with my new role and responsibilities.”
“He did a great job. and because of that, I now have a great job. Instead of hoping for an interview, I’m getting interviews right away.
I would definitely recommend anyone who’s looking for work hire Ken for a professionally written resume.
When you consider what you stand to gain from getting a better job sooner as a result, it’s totally worth the price.”
“Ken is the absolute best in his field!
He takes the time necessary to craft the ultimate resume and cover letter documents.
I was offered a resume writing service from my company when I was let go, and I graciously declined and opted to enlist Ken to assist me after reading the reviews.
5 star reviews do not come along very often and when you use his service you will see exactly why he is the gold standard in this field.”
“I couldn’t be more happy with the experience that I had with Ken.
He did an outstanding job in producing a resume that was above and beyond my expectations.
I would recommend his services to anyone that needed a professional resume.
He genuinely cares.”
“Ken produced an extremely high quality product in my executive resume. He was able to bring together essential components of my professional experience and highlight them in a manner that opened the door for a targeted application.
His knowledge and experience helped brand my professionalism and expertise exactly as required; my new executive resume afforded me the opportunity to compete for one the highest positions within my field and community.
His interview coaching then ensured that I was able to maximize this opportunity through creating a dialogue within the interview and with the hiring committee to showcase all the added value my skills, experience, and passion brought to the position I was seeking with this premier organization.
I strongly recommend Ken and his services for those wishing to create lasting employment success and advancement opportunities.”
“Ken did an outstanding job with providing me a resume, a cover letter and a Linkedin profile. It was really hard for me to write my own resume, number one because I have never had the need before and second, because of my diverse experience in different industries and areas.
I knew I needed someone with experience to interview me to be able capture my key competencies and skills and focus on what will attract me to employers, he did it!
Thank you very much Ken, I now feel confident to go job hunting.”
“Ken did an outstanding job with providing me an up to date resume and cover letter in less than a week. I have been at the same company for 10 years, but have had so many different roles and positions, it was hard to articulate my key skills in a three page resume.
From our interview session, Ken was able to capture my key competencies and skills, and focus on what will attract me to employers. A small investment to secure a great career. Highly recommend!.”