Starting a new job can be one of the most life changing, positive experiences possible. It can also be one of the most challenging and stressful times to go through, with plenty of uncertainty and trepidation. New tasks, new colleagues, new environments and opportunities. But hold your ponies, because first you need to get that job!
When it comes to finding work or changing your occupation – even if it’s just moving from one department to another within the same company or organization – your resume or CV is your way to show off what you have to offer.
Sure, it’s important to show the experience you have, the projects you’ve worked on and your personal skills, but you also need to stand out from the crowd. You don’t want to sell yourself short, or to let yourself down by not creating a resume which will allow you to shine.
So many job seekers fall down at the first hurdle if they don’t produce a professional resume. But we understand, it’s not always easy to write a resume, particularly if you’ve not written one for a long time (or have never written one before). Thankfully, there are plenty of helpful solutions out there in the form of CV / Resume Writing Software.
Simply explained, resume writing software is a program which makes resume writing a bit easier. More often than not, you’ll be asked for basic information (such as your current job, how long you’ve been there, what you do in that role...). If you’re not sure how to phrase it, many software packages will help you out by making suggestions, which you can select and edit. Once all of this is completed, the software then organizes the information and puts it into an attractive document. The resume is then ready to print or email.
However, there’s far more to this software than the basic outline we’ve provided. You can also get help finding jobs, extract information from your social networking account or other documents. Some packages allow you to upload your resume to a unique web page for prospective employers to view, allowing them to get in touch with you.
Different software packages for writing a resume offer a surprisingly varied array of tools. So, it’s important to find the one which suits you.
We’ve looked at a range of resume and curriculum vitae writing software packages in the hope that we can help you to decide which one will best fulfill your needs. Before you rush ahead to our reviews, though, there are a few things you might wish to think about...
If you’re new to writing resumes, or just need a bit of help, it’s important to know what you should or shouldn’t include. Many websites offer information in the form of blog posts or articles. Some even allow you to download e-books with tips. You might also wish to find a site which provides careers advice, interview tips and more. If this is something you’re interested in, check our reviews for websites which score highly for the CV/Resume writing advice they offer.
Writing features and tools
Getting your wording right is one of the hardest parts of writing a resume. Rather than saying “I’m good with my hands” you probably want to write something along the lines of: “I have hands-on experience in designing and manufacturing.” Some of the sites we’ve reviewed will help you to write your resume, either by offering a professional writing service (whereby a team member will write your resume for you) or providing a range of set phrases which you can copy, paste and edit. You might also wish to alter the appearance or order of the information in your resume, so look for software packages which allow you to do this.
As well as the wording and layout of your resume, you might also wish to find other useful tools to help you find a job. We check whether or not a site offers support for job seekers. You’ll find services which allow you to upload your CV to a web page, create cover letters, search for new jobs on the market, maintain employer records in a diary and more. These features can make all the difference if you’re serious about finding a new job, so bear them in mind. Take a look at our list of features, provided in each review, to discover what’s on offer.
Ease of use, navigation and installation
Resume writing software is meant to make your life easier. As such you want to be able to easily download and use it, without having errors impede your progress. We look at how each software package functions, how easy we feel it is to use, and how easy it is to navigate around. We also think about the usefulness of any website, as much of the information you receive is online rather than part of the software. If you don’t want a hard time moving text, fiddling with templates and more, you may wish to look for a software package which is easy to use.
Although most of the resume and CV writing packages we’ve reviewed are pretty simple to use, you may find that you need help occasionally. We look at a company’s customer support, whether it’s via telephone, live chat, on-site answers to questions or one-on-one support. Poor customer service means that you might come into a problem and struggle to find a solution. The best sites offer online answers and a variety of support options to help you when you most need it.
Value for money
A low price doesn’t always mean you get good value for money. Some of the software we’ve reviewed is completely free, which is great, but it usually doesn’t offer the same quality you’ll find elsewhere. Meanwhile, a more expensive package might seem pricy, but in the long run you may get a better resume at the end of the process. There’s a careful balance between what you can afford and what’s going to do the best job for you. If you’re looking for someone to write a resume for you, that will tend to be quite expensive. Monthly fees might seem cheaper, but be cautious of signing up for long periods if you don’t think you’ll need to use the service for an extended period of time. Sometimes paying for a permanent software licence sounds expensive, but it can work out cheaper in the long run. We discuss the price of each product in our Editor’s Review, so be sure to check it out to see what we think.
Whether you’re looking for a promotion, to shift into another role or to change careers entirely, resume and CV writing software can really be a great help. There’s plenty on offer, and the software packages differ more than you might think, so take a look at a few of our reviews to find out which one might suit you best. And good luck in finding that new job!