How to Find a Certified Professional Resume Writer

Wondering how to find a Certified Professional Resume Writer? They're hiding in plain sight in one of two professional associations. Here are some tips and advice on finding a Certified Professional Resume Writer for your project.

Let's say you're prepared to drop some money on a professionally-prepared resume. You've been doing a bit of research, and you've seen hints of the existence of an elusive creature known as a Certified Professional Resume Writer. Should you pursue one? And if so, where can they be found?

To answer the first question, yes. With resume writers a dime a dozen on the internet, certification is a tool that allows you to quickly separate the wheat from the chaff. Absent a recommendation from someone you trust, going with a Certified Professional Resume Writer is a safer bet than randomly picking from one of the gazillion resume writers with a shingle swinging on the Web. Certification signals that the writer has had to pass through a testing procedure and demonstrate his or her industry knowledge, talent and writing expertise. Certification is a baseline that provides the prospective client with a level of assurance that he or she is dealing with a professional.

So, where to find these elusive creatures? Actually, they're not so elusive at all, once you know where to look.

Begin with the Industry Associations

Two competing industry associations offer their members a path to professional certification. Those certificates serve as a sort of public notice that the writer who holds it has demonstrated his or her knowledge of the resume craft, as well as a certain talent and writing expertise, and a dedication to furthering the career goals of clients. Those associations are:

1 - The Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches (also known by its acronym PARW/CC). Founded in 1990, members certified by this organization hold the designation CPRW after their name, which stands for Certified Professional Resume Writer. The CPRW credential has gone on to become the industry standard for professional resume writers.

2 - The National Resume Writers' Association (also known by its acronym NRWA). This is a 400-member non-profit trade organization founded in 1996. Members achieving certification hold the designation NCRW after their name, which stands for Nationally Certified Resume Writer. The NCRW requires those members who have achieved certification to complete continuing education units annually in order to maintain a cutting edge the industry.

Both Association Sites Have Search Features

Let's assume you'd like to find a certified professional resume writer in your local area. Both associations mentioned above have search engines on their home pages that allow the public to identify their certified members by locale. Active association members who are interested in taking on resume clients will usually mention their company affiliation (if any) and make contact information available - either a phone number or email address or both.

As a prospective client, can reach out to active members via phone or email with questions regarding services offered, industry expertise, pricing, turnaround times, etc. If two or more certified resume writers pop up in your area, you'll be able to compare writers and choose the one with whom you feel most comfortable.

An Alternative: Browse The Internet For Certified Professional Resume Writers

Resume services have been multiplying like rabbits lately to take advantage of the increased number of job seekers in this post-recessionary economy. Even a cursory look at the internet will uncover a number of those services employing certified professional resume writers. So yes, a little bit of investigative work on the Web will uncover a number of writers with CPRW or NCRW after their names.

One cautionary note. Don't base your decision solely on the fact that a service employs certified writers. A number of other factors should be taken into consideration before deciding which service or individual writer is best suited to your needs. Factors like the company's longevity in the marketplace, their method of gathering information (e.g. phone interview or email form?), pricing structure, assurances and guarantees, and more.

In short, make sure you know up-front what you're getting.

David Alan Carter is a former recruiter. Writing for the website, Carter has confronted the Web's most popular resume writers in his Resume Services Reviews, reviewing quality of workmanship, spelling out their pricing, and giving each a star ranking.

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