If you're job hunting, few things are more important than a properly formatted, well-thought-out resume. Writing a resume can be a daunting task because you need to make sure you include all necessary information while keeping the document to a manageable size.
If you haven’t written a resume before, or haven’t updated yours in quite a while, getting started can be a challenge, but there are resources available that will assist you in writing an interview-winning resume for your job search.
Even if you've worked hard to write your resume, it’s helpful to have it reviewed by an objective and experienced professional.
Where to Find Resume Writing Help
There are numerous options available for getting help with your resume to ensure that the final draft will be looked at by prospective employers. You may be excellent at your job with the credentials to prove it, but if your resume doesn't shine, you may not be considered for the job.
Here’s a variety of resources you can use when you need help creating or updating your resume, so it’s comprehensive and competitive.
Free Online Resume Resources
You may be able to write your resume yourself, using free online resources. At the least, you can create a draft that will help you get the process started. Our step-by-step guide for how to write a resume will walk you through the process, including choosing a type of resume, what to include, what to leave off, fonts, formatting, and templates and examples.
Many leading job sites have free online resume builders. Here’s a selection to try:
- CakeResume: The Resume to Land Your Dream Job
- Indeed: Easy and Free Online Resume Builder
- Jobscan: Free Resume Builder ATS-Approved
- Resume.com: Build a Professional Resume for Free
There are many other sites with online resume builders, but not all are actually free to use. Some resume sites charge for premium access, templates, downloads, and other resources.
Before you use an online resume builder, read the fine print to be sure you can actually save and download the resume you created for free. Some sites let you create a resume, but then charge you to access it.
American Job Centers
American Job Centers offer in-person and virtual job search assistance at locations around the country. Use CareerOneStop’s American Job Center Finder to find local assistance.
CareerOneStop Resume Guide
The U.S. Department of Labor’s CareerOneStop site has a Resume Guide that includes a guide for what to include in your resume, templates and samples, and tips for writing and formatting your resume.
State Resources for Resume Writing Help
Most state department of labor websites offers free resume writing services for employees, the unemployed, those returning to the workplace, and military veterans. Local government websites will likely also offer sample resumes, sample cover letters, interview tips, and other pertinent information helpful for your job search.
Some department of labor offices offer virtual workshops you can attend to get help with writing your resume and with your job search. Check with your state labor department to see what’s available in your location.
College Career Offices
If you're a college student (or alumnus) the career services office at your school or alma mater may be able to help you write your resume or provide you with useful feedback. The staff in a career office has a lot of experience helping professionals, as well as recent graduates, and they know how to polish a resume to make it stand out.
They are also familiar with hiring managers, how managers scan resumes, and the resume software used by employers. These career counselors can also provide guidance regarding the best way to format your resume and the best keywords to use to set you apart from the competition.
Many libraries offer programs and workshops for job seekers, as well as resume writing help and computer access. Check your local library to learn about what assistance is available in your location.
Use CareerOneStop’s Library Finder to find libraries and contact information so you can check on available services.
Professional Resume Services
It may not seem worth it to spend money on a resume service, especially if you are unemployed and on a tight budget, but your resume is your first impression before you even get the interview. For a fee, professional resume writing services will either write your resume for you or edit the one you have.
Family, Personal, and Professional Contacts
Compose a draft of your resume and seek feedback from family members, friends, college alumni, and other professionals who have experience screening job candidates.
An added benefit of this strategy is that your contacts might develop an appreciation of your assets as a prospective employee and refer you for jobs.