Freelance Resume Writing Careers

Resume writing is one of the most popular writing services that freelance writers offer to individuals. Because most writers have proven experience in writing resumes for themselves or for their friends, transitioning into this niche is often easier than other niches like writing articles for magazines. This is not to say that writing resumes is an easy task; it is not. The individual who hires you is relying on you to phrase his experience poignantly, to select the right words to highlight specific skills, and to format the resume correctly. Most individuals feel too much anxiety to start or rework a resume because they don’t know how to overcome writer’s block and they lack strong written communication skills to land a job or secure an interview. This is where you come in—the resume writer—to give hope to a dreary, anxiety-driven situation.

Writing Resumes for a Living

Resume writers can earn anywhere from $75 to $200 per resume. You can earn up to $300 per resume if you accompany it with a well-written cover letter. Sometimes the type of client will dictate the rate. An executive at a Fortune 100 company would pay a much higher rate to create a resume than a college graduate seeking his first professional job. In fact, writing executive-level resumes can pay as much as $400 per resume because the writing and research process takes a lot longer and may require many revisions.

Finding Resume Writing Jobs

It’s an obvious fact that everyone needs a resume at some point in life; this includes: 1) college graduates seeking their first dream job, 2) business managers who want to climb the corporate ladder, 3) homebound parents who are itching to get back into the workforce, 4) retirees who want a part-time or seasonal job, 5) laid-off individuals who are struggling to land a new job…the list is seemingly endless. You can decide to write resumes for a specific class of individuals (such as business executives) or write resumes for the entire gamut of job-seekers.

You can offer resume writing services locally (in your community), nationally (online), or both. Each has its advantages and disadvantages such as: competition, level of pay, deadlines, type of clients, and so forth. You might find less competition among other writers if you target local people in your community. On the other hand, you might find it more convenient to write resumes for anyone in any state or city via the Internet. In either case you need to market and advertise yourself and your services to generate interest and eventually land your first job and build from there.

You can use many marketing methods, such as advertising in your local newspaper (and at its companion website) or church bulletin, handing out business cards, and networking at social events. To market to a national audience it makes more sense to focus your marketing activities via the Internet, such as establishing a website or blog, networking at LinkedIn and Facebook, and building a social media presence.

You will probably find it more useful to visit the popular job sites online, such as,, and I recommend you register with one of the online outsourcing marketplaces— or—because you can always find new resume writing jobs there.

[ Search for Freelance Resume Writing Jobs | ]

What Skills Do You Need?

A resume writer needs plenty of skills, most of them obvious. First, you need impeccable skills in spelling, grammar and sentence structure. Second, you need a flexible vocabulary to apply different words to different types of resumes. Third, you need to know how to write tightly and concisely. You never see paragraphs in resumes. Fourth, you should know how to phrase achievements and job skills so that they sound unique and amazing. Fifth, you should know what words to use to persuade and convince the reader that the applicant is the best. Lastly, you must know how to format the resume without error.

Different jobs and careers demand different resumes. Usually you only need to decide on one of three common resume formats: Chronological, Functional or Combination. If you are unsure which format matches best with the job or the individual, then consult the top websites on resume writing or purchase a book or two on resume format. Don’t try to “wing it” simply because you think your writing skills are all you need. Formatting is as important as the writing itself.

One of the greatest assets that you can offer your client is your creativity: to turn dull job jargon into awe-inspiring skill assets; to make the applicant look like he is superhuman without exaggerating. Remember, people are hiring you to showcase them like prized trophies.

Create a Portfolio to Sell Yourself

Since you are working as a freelancer, you will need to create a portfolio. All professional freelancers have one. You use it to showcase your skills and samples. The intent is to sell yourself and convince prospective clients that you are the best of the best. If you currently lack samples, you can create several professional “mockup” resumes that demonstrate your skills and expertise. Use these to start a portfolio. When you do land your first gig, use the client’s finished resume in your portfolio, along with a testimonial from the client. Then repeat the process. Gradually you will have a portfolio of samples and testimonials that will sell your services for you.

Replying to Inquiries

Let’s say you placed an ad online or offline and an individual has contacted you to write a resume for a job change. The person wants to know how much it will cost. What do you say?

Her email to you says:

I heard you do resumes…I am looking for a professional to do a new resume for me. I currently work in customer service at a clothing store but I am eager to change to a better job. I want to apply to a job opening at a popular hotel in my area. It’s for a full-time position as a service desk associate. Can you help me? I need to know about costs first since I am on a budget. Thank you, Laura.

Laura’s email is asking for more than the cost of your services. She is motivated to transition to a better job that probably pays more and improves upon her existing skills and experience. Simply put, Laura needs to know if you’re the person to help create a great resume that she feels confident that could land her a new job.A poor, lackluster response would be something like: “Thanks for your inquiry. My fee is $65 per resume.

Don’t reply with just a price. You must engage Laura and appeal to her emotions and desires. If you believe you have the skills and commitment to meet Laura’s intents, then reply with an email that might say:

Hi Laura, thank you for your email. It seems like your customer service background would help you land that wonderful position as a service desk associate. I can help you. I can create a powerful, persuasive resume that will showcase all of your ideal skill-sets and achievements. Although I cannot guarantee that you will land the job, I can guarantee that I will exceed your expectations. For $75, I can create a brand new resume that you will feel confident in submitting to the employer. I look forward to serving you!

Remember, your clients want more than just a resume. They want a job—or at least a job interview. Demonstrate that you can assist them to land that job within their budget. Leave them with the impression that you can fulfill all of their needs.

About the author

Brian Scott

Brian Scott

Brian Scott uses his creative skills to freelance full-time as a copywriter, SEO marketing specialist, and graphic designer. Self-employed since 1996, he's had the opportunity to work in traditional media (pre-Internet Age) and now online media. Prior to freelancing, he worked in public relations, newspaper copy editing, and mail-order marketing.

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