5 Helpful Zoom Interview Tips

So, here you are. It’s 2020 and job interviews are all online. While we might be fine talking to friends and family virtually, meeting with a hiring manager is another story altogether. If Zoom interviews are coming up in your future, don’t despair, just follow our list of Zoom interview tips and you’ll be sure to impress even the most persnickety of interviewers.


1. Find A Quiet Place

When it comes to Zoom interviews, one of the biggest mistakes you can make is choosing a location that is noisy or crowded. While you probably already know that a coffeehouse or other public spot is a bad option, you also don’t want to choose a spot in your home that could be affected by noise.


Not only could you become distracted by outside noise, roommates or family members, but it can also be distracting for the hiring manager, as well. Choose a quiet location, preferably in a room where you can lock the door and ensure that no one can waltz in during the interview. Obviously, not everyone has an actual office room in their home, so consider using a bedroom. It can be a good idea to put a sign up on the bedroom door stating that you are in an interview and need quiet.


Be sure to close window coverings, so that there’s no glare or light from outside coming in and no distractions from passersby or animals, etc. Closing drapes or curtains also can muffle the noise level somewhat, so if a trash truck passes by or someone is yelling outside, this won’t be as noticeable.


Be sure to tell your roommates about the interview or your family members. If you have children, it can be a smart idea to have your significant other or a babysitter take them to the park or out for a walk, so keep the noise level low.


2. Create A Stunning Backdrop

Ok, it doesn’t have to be completely stunning, but the backdrop is important. Once you’ve found a great quiet spot in your home for the interview, take stock of what will be seen on the screen. If the room is messy, clean it up. If there are distracting posters or personal items on the screen, remove them.


You want the backdrop to be tidy and free of distractions so that the hiring manager focuses on you and not on your collection of giant beer steins. A blank wall or a wall with a simple piece of artwork might be fine. You could even add a plant to sort of create a nice ambiance. Cleaning up the area and removing clutter also benefits you, as well. A neat, tidy space is relaxing and helps you focus on the interview and not on the mess in the room.


One great thing about Zoom interviews as opposed to some other platforms is that Zoom allows users to change their backdrop. You will need to be sitting in front of a blank wall painted a solid color, however. If you don’t have a blank wall, you could set up a green screen behind you so that you can access this feature.


3. Avoid Technical Issues

Before you log on for Zoom interviews, you will want to ensure that you have a solid internet connection. You also need to make sure that your computer works well for a Zoom interview, a Facetime interview or with whatever virtual meeting program that is being used. To check this, contact a friend via the virtual system and test it out. You don’t want any last-minute surprises.


Additionally, sit down in front of the computer, look into the camera and check the lighting in your room. If it’s too dim, you might need to add some lighting. Just make sure that you don’t have too much lighting from behind you, as this tends to create odd shadows on your face. When you test the Zoom connection with your friend, ask this person to see if the lighting looks good as well as the backdrop in general and check to make sure that you are easy to hear.


4. Dress The Part

These days, it can be tempting to wear sweats and pajamas all day long. However, this is always a bad idea when you are in a virtual meeting, but especially for Zoom interviews. Whether a job interview is online or in-person, professional attire is a requirement.


Not only does professional attire and a neat appearance impress the hiring manager, but it also helps you feel more professional. Don’t just log on to Zoom with bedhead and a ragged t-shirt. If you look professional, you will feel professional, and the hiring manager will know that you are taking the interview seriously.


4. Practice Your Interview Skills

This isn’t just one of our Zoom interview tips, this is a tip we suggest for anyone who will be going to job interviews. Practicing the answers to typical interview questions can help reduce your anxiety during the actual interview. With Zoom interviews, you could practice with that friend we talked about earlier, you know, the one that checked your sound and lighting and gave constructive criticism about your backdrop.


At Top5 Resume Writers, we’ve selected some of the top resume writing companies and several of our top picks offer career coaching, as well as resume writing services, cover letter services and LinkedIn profile writing. If you have been having trouble during Zoom interviews or with in-person interviews, career coaching might be an option to consider.


Of course, you can’t start going to those Zoom interviews without a great resume, and that’s where we can help. In addition to using our Zoom interview tips, we highly recommend that you consider our favorite resume company, Resume Writing Group, for your resume, cover letters and more.


To find the best resume writers, we created a mystery client and sent out the same information about this client to many popular resume writing services. After reviewing the results, we found that Resume Writing Group was way ahead of the pack in terms of content and customer service. They created an eye-catching, error-free resume that wowed our review panel.


Whether you need to brush up your skills for those Zoom interviews or need to get started with a new resume, we highly recommend Resume Writing Group, and their work comes with a solid resume guarantee. If you use their resume and follow their advice, but are not hired in 45 days or less, they will refund the cost of your resume.

7 Resume Editing Tips From Professional Resume Writers

If the idea of resume writing and resume editing strikes a bit of fear in your heart, we understand. Not only does your resume need to be well-written, but it must also be error-free. In many polls, hiring managers state that if they find one or more careless errors on a resume, they are likely to simply toss it in the trash. Hopefully, the following list of editing tips will help you create the perfect resume.


1. Read Your Resume Three Times

It’s important that you read over the resume three times, and read it over slowly. Don’t let yourself get distracted. Focus on each line of type and be sure to check that the contact information is correct.


We also recommend that you don’t necessarily complete all three editing sessions at the same time. Read it once and then walk away for 10 minutes and go back and read the resume again. Then save your third read for several hours later or perhaps the next day.


2. Read The Resume Out Loud

This might sound silly, but it really can help you find errors more easily. Not only will you be able to find spelling and grammar errors, but you also might realize that some lines of type don’t read very smoothly and need some revision. Anytime you have an important document to send out, reading the document out loud can be a great way to gauge the overall quality of the content.


3. Don’t Just Rely On Your Eyes

When it comes to resume editing, it’s a mistake to rely on your own editing skills. Even a seasoned pro can make an error from time to time, so get a second set of eyes on that resume before you send it out. Ideally, you’d just ask a friend or family member with strong writing skills. If you don’t know anyone with writing or editing skills, pick someone who is an avid reader. They are sifting through language all the time and are likely to find an issue or two within your resume.


4. Yes, Use The Spellcheck Program

The basic spellcheck programs provided by Microsoft Word and Google Docs can catch a few errors. While it would be a huge mistake to simply depend on these spellcheck programs, you could start the editing process with a quick spellcheck followed by a more thorough check using a program such as Grammarly.


While Grammarly and other similar programs are better at finding grammar, spelling and syntax errors, they are not foolproof. In fact, just this morning, whilst we edited another blog article, one of these add-on grammar checkers missed a big error, not catching that we typed “there,” when we should have typed “their.” This is why it’s crucial that you don’t depend on software for all of your editing needs.


5. Pay Attention To The Style

While spelling and grammar errors are resume killers, the general style and design of your resume can create problems, as well. For instance, if you create a list of work tasks using dashes in one section and then use bullets in the next, this looks sloppy. If you indent tasks in one section but don’t in another, this also looks awkward and might send the message that you lack attention to detail.


While a clean, easy-to-read design is important, don’t get carried away with clever designs. Sometimes these designs make it harder to read and confusing for a hiring manager, who generally has about one minute to spare per resume. While you do need to be consistent with the design, the content is always the most important factor.


6. Edit Out The Non-Essentials

Resumes must be error-free. Resumes must be well-written using proper grammar. Resume writers must strategize and quantify their work with clear examples of what they have accomplished. Resumes also need to be as short as possible.


In most cases, your resume should not extend beyond one page, and definitely not beyond two pages. High-level executives might be fine with a two-page resume, but most professionals are better off handing in a one-page resume. Again, hiring managers are pressed for time, if they only have a minute or so to read each resume, it’s not likely that they will peruse your second page.


If you find yourself going over a single page, look for items to cut. The items you cut should be the least relevant to the hiring manager. This person wants to hear about your education, your work experience and your skills or certifications. This means you can cut out items such as the objective (you can discuss your objectives in a cover letter) and items such as the tired line, “References Available Upon Request.”


Additionally, you can omit work experiences that you held in college or high school. These work experiences are only relevant if you are an entry-level employee without any professional experience. You also can omit high school from your resume just as soon as you graduate from college or trade school.


7. Hire A Professional Resume Writer

Let’s be honest, resume writing isn’t easy, and trying to create a dynamic, strategic resume that’s error-free, appeals to hiring managers and ticks all the boxes set by applicant-tracking software can be overwhelming. It often just makes sense to hire an expert resume writer to create this all-important document.


At Top 5 Resume Writers, we’ve reviewed the results from many resume companies, and selected Resume Writing Group as our favorite option. Their resume contained no careless errors, and each resume they create is not only edited by the writer, but they also hand it off to a second editor to ensure that it is reviewed by a second set of eyes, and in this case, the eyes belong to a resume specialist, which is exactly what you want.


While you might be tempted to save a bit of money and write your own resume, think for just a minute about what your career is worth. Resume Writing Group guarantees that you use their resume, but aren’t employed in 45 days or less, they will refund the price of your resume. Getting a great job is your goal, and this is one of the best resume guarantees we’ve seen.


Using a professional resume writing company is a smart investment, and it saves you the trouble of worry about your own resume writing and resume editing skills. One final note, though, while the pros at Resume Writing Group will provide you with a great resume, it’s crucial that you doublecheck your contact information. After all, the writer won’t know if your email or phone number is correct, so be sure to give that information a second look.

How To Find The Best Executive Resume Writing Service

While an entry-level resume is short and sweet, executive resumes are a different ball of wax altogether. Executive resume writing takes a bit more skill and finesse, which is why you need to find an experienced, top-rated executive resume writing service for this project, and we can help.


At Top 5 Resume Writers, we know that finding great executive resume writing services can be tricky. There are literally dozens of companies out there promising that their writers are the best. So, what’s the best way to figure out which companies truly provide the best services?


We wanted to find the answer to this question ourselves, so we purchased resumes from many of the most popular resume writing companies. We create a fake bio for a mystery client and sent the same information to each company, and then we compared the results side-by-side.


We also presented all of these resumes to an independent group of current and former hiring managers to let them have a look and provide their feedback. After all, these are the people in charge of hiring people and looking over resumes, they would be the best judge of what makes a resume great.


The results of our little study were kind of surprising. For one thing, many companies sent us back resumes with not just one but several careless errors. In some cases, the writing quality was fine otherwise, but add in a couple of spelling errors and the resume is a dud.


Our team of experts was asked to find the best-written and most-compelling executive resume, and they unanimously chose Resume Writing Group as their top pick. This was a bit of blow given that they ranked The Resume Writing Experts as number two, and they are owned by the same parent company as us, but, nevertheless, Resume Writing Group was easily the favorite of all of our hiring manager judges.


Their resume was error-free, naturally, but what truly set the resume apart was that the resume writer concentrated on using strategic wordplay and that grabbed our attention. This also was the only executive resume writing service that contacted the “mystery client” directly to obtain more information and learn a bit more about the client.


If you need an executive-level resume, we highly recommend any of our top three picks, but as all are priced about the same, it just makes sense to use the top pick, Resume Writing Group. They also back their resume with a unique guarantee. If you use their resume and follow their advice, but are not hired in 45 days or less, they will refund the cost of your resume and pay you an additional $100.


Should You Write Your Own Resume?

You certainly can create your own resume, but we don’t recommend it for two compelling reasons:


1. Errors Are Easy To Make

Even the world’s best writer and grammarian makes an occasional mistake and just one careless mistake can cost you a great job opportunity. The executive resume writers at Resume Writing Group will edit your resume, and they also pass it along to another resume expert for a second edit. If you do write your resume, ensure that at least one other person (particularly a person with strong writing skills) looks over the document. A basic run through spellcheck just isn’t enough.


2. You Aren’t A Resume Expert

If you are at the executive level, you are an expert in your field, but it’s doubtful that you’d be reading this article if your expertise was in resume writing. Professional resume writers understand the nuances of resume writing, and they know what hiring managers at all levels want to see and what they don’t want to see. Sometimes, it’s just best to delegate or outsource a task, especially if you can find someone who handles that task on a daily basis with a high rate of success.


How Much Does An Executive Resume Writing Service Cost?

You’ll often see cheap resumes for $29, $39 or $49 advertised on the internet, but these tend to be mediocre entry-level resumes. In general, an entry-level resume for a person with little to no experience should cost around $85 to $100.


Prices go up from there, and you should expect to pay a bit more for a professional resume and, for a senior or high-level executive resume, it’s not uncommon to pay more than $200 for this service. Executive resume writing is more complicated than simply creating a resume for a person fresh out of college.


An executive resume writing service also usually provides services such as cover letter writing and a LinkedIn profile writing service. These add-ons can help you create a more well-rounded approach to your job hunt. Recruiters often use LinkedIn to headhunt talent, and a great LinkedIn profile can help set you apart from others. We highly recommend that you take advantage of all of the elements of LinkedIn and continuously update your profile with interesting articles, videos and perhaps your own blog articles or links to lectures or speeches you might have presented.


Even if you aren’t actively looking for work, it’s smart to have an update resume and perhaps even a cover letter ready to go at all times. You never know when an opportunity will arise and many executive positions are never posted, so it’s best to be prepared when a recruiter or an associate reaches out to discuss a potential job offer.


If you need an executive resume writing service, we highly recommend Resume Writing Group. They also can provide you with LinkedIn profile writing and cover letter writing. Using a professional resume writer can be one of the best ways to ensure that your resume is a step beyond the competition.

How To Create A Killer IT Support Resume

With so many people working remotely, not to mention schools and colleges around the nation utilizing online educational options, the demand for IT professionals is high and the competition is fierce for these job positions is fierce. Naturally, you’ll need to create a job-winning IT support resume, and we can help.


Before we provide you with our list of IT resume tips, we would like to suggest that you consider using a professional resume writing service to create your resume. Pro resume writers have far more experience and truly know how to create an IT support resume or IT director resume that appeals to a hiring manager. While we highly recommend using a pro (and will provide some stellar recommendations further along in this article), if you write your resume, consider following these tips.


Tip #1 – Individualize Each Resume You Submit

Hiring managers might receive dozens or even hundreds of resumes for a single job position so they rarely spend more than a minute glancing at each resume. Additionally, most resumes these days are submitted digitally and run through applicant-tracking software. As an IT professional, you probably are well aware that this software is looking for very specific keywords in each resume that is submitted.


This means you need to read job descriptions carefully and ensure that you have included the exact terminology written in the listing. These are the keywords that hiring managers skim resumes looking for and these are the keywords that software will target.  If you have additional skills, it’s fine to add these as well, just make sure you have included what is the company representative wants to see on a resume.


This also means that you cannot and should not send out a cookie-cutter resume to hundreds of potential employers. Make sure that each resume you send out is tailored to the specific job posting. If you use a professional resume writing service for your IT support resume, just edit it slightly for each job posting.


Tip #2 – Quantify Your Work Whenever Possible

One thing that all great resumes have in common is that they all provide concrete examples of your abilities and how your skills benefitted your previous employers. If you are a software engineer, you might provide examples of how your work improved efficiency, while a tech support specialist might discuss how many people they trained or perhaps quickly describe a company training manual they developed that helped to increase productivity.


The bottom line is that you don’t just want to highlight tasks or responsibilities; you want to highlight your accomplishments. After all, many people will have the same skills written on their resume, and if you can show evidence that your skills helped an employer, the hiring manager is likely to choose your resume over the resume of a person who just listed their job responsibilities.


Tip #3 – Keep It Short

We will keep this paragraph short as well. In general, most resumes should never run longer than a single page. If you are sending in an IT director resume or IT manager resume for a high-level executive position, your resume might include two pages, but for most professional resumes, it’s best to stick with just one page. A professional resume writer can help you decide what to include and what to omit.


Tip #4 – Make It Easy-To-Read

There are two parts to this tip. The first is about design. While a funky and cool design might seem like a great idea, it usually is best to stick with a simple, straightforward design. Not only is this easier for hiring managers to read, applicant-tracking software only works with resumes in a traditional format with normal margins and fairly ordinary typefaces.


Secondly, as an IT professional, you probably know a great deal of industry jargon. While it might seem like displaying this knowledge would benefit you, it’s best to just use plain old ordinary verbiage in a resume. Why? A hiring manager may or may not understand the jargon. In some cases, the hiring manager is simply the person tasked with looking through resumes, and they might not be that tech-savvy.


While you want to list your skills, the programs you can use, systems you can work with and so forth, include terms that most people understand rather than peppering the resume with a preponderance of tech speak. Also, while your skills are important, your ability to communicate also is important and if the hiring manager doesn’t understand your resume or jargon-filled cover letter, they might pass you by.


Don’t Write Your Own Resume, Use A Pro!

At Top 5 Resume Writers, we don’t actually write resumes, but we can provide you with a shortlist of top-quality resume writing companies. There are hundreds of resume writing websites and resume template websites out there, but not all of them will provide you with exceptional results. If you aren’t sure which resume company to select, we’ve done the hard work for you.


We conducted an experiment to test the quality of the resumes from many of the so-called top resume websites. We created a “mystery shopper” and sent this fictitious person’s information to many different resume companies and hired them to create a professional resume.


Once the results came in, we gave the results to an independent group to review the resumes. The people we chose for this project are those who have been or currently are tasked with making hiring decisions.


This group unanimously chose Resume Writing Group as their top pick. The provided our group with a dynamic, error-free resume that grabbed the attention of the reviewers. The resume featured an easy-to-read design and Resume Writing Group was the only company to contact the “mystery shopper” and ask for more information and this level of customer service led to a higher quality resume than the competition.


If you need an IT support resume, IT director resume or IT manager resume, we highly recommend using a professional service, and, from our experience, Resume Writing Group can provide you with a high-quality resume at a competitive price. They also stand behind their resumes with a unique guarantee. If you use their resume and follow their advice, but aren’t hired within 45 days, they will refund the resume cost and pay you an additional $100.

Great Resumes Guaranteed: Why We Chose Resume Writing Group

These days, you don’t have time or money to waste on a subpar resume. If you’ve been furloughed or laid off, you probably are working on polishing up your interview skills and searching for possible job opportunities, and you need great resumes guaranteed to attract the attention of hiring managers in a difficult job market.

At Top 5 Resume Writers, we don’t actually write resumes. We simply review resumes written by other companies and select the companies that provide the best overall services. Let’s talk for a minute about what makes a resume great, and why we chose one company as our top pick over dozens of other top resume sites.


5 Tips For Great Resumes – Guaranteed

1. Make Sure The Resume Is Error-Free

This should be obvious, but it’s worth talking about for a minute. A single spelling error can cost you a great job opportunity. Even if you hire a professional service, give the resume a quick read to ensure that there are no errors.

This is especially important when it comes to contact information. If your phone number or email aren’t correct, it’s impossible for hiring managers to get in touch with you, and a professional resume writer won’t know if your contact information is correct or not.

2. Keep A Consistent Style

If you use bullet points in one section of the resume, don’t use dashes in another. If you boldface type for the name of one company, don’t use bold-italic for another. Keep the style consistent and simple. Consider using just one typeface instead of multiple typefaces. You might put your name in one font and everything else in a different font, but the main body of your resume should be in one single, easy-to-read typeface.

In general, a simple straightforward design is best. Don’t mess around with clever design elements, especially for a resume that you are sending electronically. A funky, cool resume might be ok to hand out directly to a hiring manager or potential boss, but if you email or upload a resume, just use a basic plain design. Chances are, this resume will be run through applicant-tracking software, and this software often cannot process resumes with odd design elements, strange margins and unique typefaces.

3. Include Dynamic Content & Quantify Your Skills

Hiring managers don’t just need to see that you have work experience; they need to quickly understand what you accomplished during each of these work experiences. This can be the most difficult part of writing a resume, and it’s one of the best reasons to use a professional resume writer.

If you want resumes guaranteed to attract a hiring manager’s attention, you need to express your skills with quantifiable examples. For instance, it’s not enough to simply state you were “tasked with many managerial responsibilities,” or “managed the sales team.” You need to state something like, “Managed 20-person sales staff, exceeded sales goals by 25%-40% per year, boosted company revenues by 120%.”

The hiring manager can look at the latter snippet and understand how many people you managed and how effective you were at managing that team. Obviously, not everyone reading this is a sales manager, but whether you are a nurse, a teacher, an IT specialist, a graphic designer or something else entirely, you have skills that will benefit an employer, and these skills need to be highlighted to your best advantage.

4. ATS-Compliance Is Important

Earlier, we talked about the importance of having a resume that can be read easily by applicant-tracking software. While the design is important, the content also needs to be suitable for this type of software. This means you need to include specific keywords that the software might target.

How do you find these keywords? Typically most of the keywords are listed in the job description. For instance, if you are an IT professional, there might be certain types of software with which you need to be familiar. If you are looking at a nursing job, there might be certain certifications that need to appear. Make sure that you list these keywords somewhere in your resume so that the software will find these words during a scan.

The real trick with an ATS-compliant resume is to create a resume that includes crucial keywords and avoid an awkward resume that just seems like a bunch of keywords were stuffed into it. You need a resume that appeals to humans and software, and hiring a professional resume writer can be a great way to ensure that you have an ATS-compliant resume that also appeals to hiring managers.

5. Keep It Short

Hiring managers only have a minute or two at most to look over your resume, and if it runs for several pages, they likely won’t make it past the first page. Unless you are applying for a higher-level executive position, it’s smart to keep that resume to a single page in length.


Resume Writing Group: Great Resumes Guaranteed

To select the top resume writing companies, we created a “mystery client” and sent identical information about this client to dozens of top-rated resume companies. Once we received the resumes, we provide copies of these resumes to an independent panel of people that are or have been in the position to make hiring decisions.

The panel unanimously selected Resume Writing Group as their top pick. Their resume was error-free, which is crucial, but it also was well-articulated with an obvious strategy in mind. The writer clearly knew how to highlight the “mystery client’s” skills and didn’t simply rehash the information we gave them. Resume Writing Group’s writer also was the only one that contacting the client to gather additional information and the results were clear.

Resume Writing Group didn’t just provide us with a great finished product; they also offer an amazing guarantee, even during these difficult economic times. Their guarantee states that if you use their resume and follow their advice, but are not hired in 45 days (or less); they will refund the cost of your resume, and pay you an additional $100. If you’ve been searching for resumes guaranteed to help you land a job, we highly recommend that you consider using Resume Writing Group’s services.

10 Essential Online & FaceTime Interview Tips

The COVID-19 pandemic has altered just about every aspect of our world, and job interviews are no exceptions. Face-to-face interviews are no longer an option, so FaceTime interviews and other online interviews are the only options. These video interviews can be a bit intimidating, so don’t grab your phone or laptop until you’ve perused our list of online and FaceTime interview tips.

It’s important to note that, typically, you probably will not be interviewing via FaceTime, as this is a phone app and can be difficult for long interviews. These FaceTime interview tips are truly meant for anyone using any type of video format such as Zoom, Google Hangouts or something else.

1. Dress In Appropriate Attire
This might seem obvious, but as we navigate our time in quarantine, it’s definitely tempting to spend your days in sweatpants and pajamas. However, this is a terrible idea for an online or Facetime interview. You should wear work-appropriate attire for the interview, so dust off that suit jacket.

It’s not easy these days to get a haircut or head to the dry cleaners, but do your best to look professional and tidy. There’s no reason for you to show off a holey t-shirt and a three-day growth of beard. If you don’t have an iron or steamer for your work clothes, this might be a good time to order online and invest in one, as you want to look as crisp as possible. Typically, wearing darker colors, such as dark blue, dark gray or black is recommended for video interviews.

To be honest, we highly recommend that you get up each morning and get dressed and groomed. Even if you won’t be going outside or working, keeping a stable routine and taking care of your appearance can boost your mood, so resist the urge to spend the day in PJs as much as possible.

2. Create A Backdrop
If you have a home office, tidy it up and give it a good polish as this will be the ideal spot for your FaceTime interview. Use your computer camera and take a look at exactly what will be in view during the interview. Remove any personal items, such as photographs or anything that isn’t professional. Basically, you want the backdrop to be tidy and bland and well lit, so that the hiring manager is focused on you and not something distracting in the background.

Of course, we know that many people don’t have a designated home office. Clear off a space somewhere in your home or office and bring in a desk or table to set up as a faux office. It’s might a good idea to use a room such as the bedroom as you can close the door and ensure that you are not interrupted, just make sure the backdrop isn’t a messy bed or a cluttered dresser.

No matter what room you choose, it is essential that you know exactly what will be viewed on camera. Again, you want the background to be clean, as professional as possible and not distracting. Keep in mind, when you are in a professional-looking area, this will make you feel more professional and confident, so this tip isn’t just to impress hiring managers.

3. Insist On Silence
The rest of your household needs to be as quiet as possible during your interview. If you just live with one roommate or your partner, this shouldn’t be too difficult, but if your household includes children or teenagers, this can be a bit tricky, especially with very small children.

If possible, the interview time would be an ideal time for your partner to take them on a long nice walk (maintaining proper self-distancing, of course) or perhaps to play in the yard. If you’ve been trying to restrict screen time, this might be a great time to ease those restrictions. Noise will distract you as well as the person conducting the interview, so cajole your family and roommates into a period of near-total silence for the duration of the interview.

4. Ensure Your Technology Is Working
One of the first questions you’ll want to ask about the online interview is what software program will be used, as there are many options beyond the basic FaceTime app that you could use on your phone or tablet.

It is crucial that you truly understand how to use whatever online platform the hiring manager will be using – Zoom, Skype, Google Hangouts and HireVue are a few options that might be used. If you’ve never used any of these tools, go online and look for a tutorial and play around with the program a bit so that you feel comfortable.

If you will be using your computer and not a phone or tablet, it is also crucial that your computer or laptop can handle the challenge. Make sure your camera and microphones are working perfectly.

We also highly recommend that you use an Ethernet connection for job interviews. Wi-Fi can be spotty, and video conferencing can use up a decent amount of bandwidth. We also recommend using a headset with a microphone if possible as this can help you focus and block out any background noise, such as a car alarm, the trash truck, a police siren or the crying infant in the apartment next door.

5. Get Prepared
Whether you are meeting in-person or interviewing remotely, there is no excuse for not being prepared. Don’t simply depend on notes, you need to do some research about the company and the job position and compose thoughtful answers to common interview questions.

These need to be memorized, just as you would for an in-person interview. After all, during an in-person interview you can’t really look at notes and you don’t have time to glance at notes during a video interview, either. Spend some time learning about the company mission statement, some recent company news and a bit about the hiring manager if possible.

Compile a list of questions to ask the hiring manager. These might include a discussion about what will be expected of you during the first weeks or months on the job. Perhaps you would ask the company culture and why the hiring manager enjoys working at the company. You might ask about a typical workday or how many people will be on your team. Resist the urge to ask about benefits, vacations, pay and other similar aspects of the job. Those types of questions will be addressed later on in the hiring process.

6. Practice, Practice, Practice
Connect with a friend or family member and practice your video interview. If possible, use the same software program that you will be using for the actual interview so that you can become more familiar with the software.

We recommend that you engage in two or three practice sessions, and ask your friend for feedback. Was the picture too dark? Did you look awkward? Was your voice clear enough? Did you speak too quickly or pause too often? Practice several times until you feel confident about your skills.

7. Log In On Time
Get in front of your computer and log on a minute or so before the video interview is set to begin. If you are doing an actual FaceTime interview on your phone, have it set up and ready to go and make sure your phone or tablet is fully charged and on silent mode. If you will be using your laptop or computer, turn your phone off or leave it in another room to avoid any unnecessary distractions.

You can log into your video meeting a minute or two early, but you don’t need to be five or ten minutes early. A couple of minutes is ample. Be sure to take a big breath and let it out before you log on. Interviews can make even the calmest person feel a bit nervous, but if you are well-prepared and look your best, you’ve got nothing to worry about.

Another Tip: You Need To Update Your Resume, ASAP
These days, it is truly essential that you have an updated resume and an updated LinkedIn profile. We know that many people have lost their jobs or been furloughed. While many employers are sure to rehire some employees, there’s just no guarantee and you need to be fully prepared for any new opportunities that might arise. Ensuring that you have a dynamic, updated resume on hand is crucial.

If you don’t have a LinkedIn account, you need to get that started today. LinkedIn is a powerful tool, used by many recruiters and hiring managers. You can even upload your resume in this account, making it as easy as possible for hiring managers or recruiters to fully understand your qualifications.

We’ve Found The Best Resume Writers!
While there are plenty of free resume templates out there (beware these aren’t always actually “free”) and plenty of companies and freelancers offering cheap resumes, we highly recommend that you use a professional resume writing company to produce your resume.

With a resume template, you still have to do all of the writing, and this can be tricky, because crafting a resume takes some skill and strategy and pros are your best bet if you want a resume that attracts the attention of hiring managers. With a cheap resume service, you are likely to end up with a resume that is lackluster and may even contain errors. Many of these cheap services use freelancers from outside the United States to save money, and the quality is poor.

We’ve reviewed resumes from many professional resume writing companies, and have chosen Resume Writing Group as our top pick. They provided a job-winning, error-free resume and they also provided excellent customer service. Their resume was well-designed and strategic, and their work is guaranteed.

Our top pick Resume Writing Group is still going strong and working with clients during the COVID-19 pandemic. In fact, they are still honoring their unique guarantee. If you use their resume and follow their advice, but are not hired in 45 days or less, they will refund your money and pay you an additional $100.

If you’ve lost your job or were furloughed, we highly recommend that you let Resume Writing Group polish up your resume and perhaps even your LinkedIn profile. Then, follow our online and FaceTime interview tips. We know these are difficult and stressful times, but a great new opportunity truly could be just around the corner.

Resume Outlines, Templates & Cheap Resume Scams

The internet is full of sites advertising “free resume outlines,” “free resume templates” or cheap resumes. While these seem like a great option on the surface, there are several reasons why we recommend that you opt for a professional resume writing service instead.

1. Resume Outlines & Templates Don’t Help With Content
While a resume outline or template will give you some idea of how to design and organize a resume, hiring managers are more interested in the content. A resume template is just a shell where you type in your personal work history and information. These templates don’t provide you with guidance as to how resume information should be written.

The actual writing is the most difficult aspect of creating a resume. Hiring managers only spend about one minute (or less) reading each resume. They are hyper-focused on finding people that possess the needed qualifications for a job. Your resume template might look fine, but if the content omits key information or doesn’t present the information in a way that attracts attention, then the template itself is pretty much useless.

2. Resume Templates Aren’t Always “Free”
Often you start using a so-called free resume template, enter a bunch of information and then when you go to print it out, the company asks for your credit card information. Sometimes they’ll state that this resume is free and part of a free trial membership, but you will still need to enter your credit card information to print out the resume.

Why? After the free trial ends, they will start charging you a fee each month for their services. Sometimes the monthly fee is $20 or more per month, which really adds up if you forget to cancel before the trial ends. Additionally, trying to cancel the trial can be difficult as well.

We’ve found several “free template” sites where it’s nearly impossible to cancel the trial, simply because it takes forever to find where to go on the website to cancel the trial. A few of them even require you to call and cancel, which can mean tons of time spent on the phone and a bunch of runaround.

3. Cheap Resumes Are Cheap For A Reason
When you see resumes advertised for $29 or $49, it seems like a great deal, but we’ve talked with writers from more expensive (and dare we say more professional) resume writing services, and they tell us that about half of their job consists of rewriting resumes that people bought from these cheap resume services.

Typically, these are cookie-cutter operations that hire a ton of part-timers to crank out cheap resumes as quickly as possible. These writers aren’t experienced, certified resume writers and they don’t know how to create the type of dynamic content that attracts the attention of resume writers. Many of them aren’t even based in the United States, and this definitely can affect the readability and quality of your resume.

Furthermore, for just $29, $39 or $49, they don’t really care all that much. A decent resume writing service charges at least $99 for a basic entry-level professional resume, and for more experienced people, such as top-level executives, the cost can double or triple.

If you truly want a resume that will get you interviews and eventually a great job, you need to hire a resume writer that understands how to highlight and quantify your skills so that a hiring manager quickly can see that you are a top candidate.

If you find a service that offers you a cheap resume, chances are you’re going to end up with a poor finished product that won’t help you make it to the interview stage, let alone to the hiring stage.

4. Resume Outlines & Templates Aren’t ATS-Compliant
These days, most companies will use Applicant Tracking Systems to filter resumes and find suitable candidates. Your resume needs to be ATS-compliant and contain the types of keywords that this software is programmed to find.

A professional resume writer will know how to tailor a resume so that it appeals both to human hiring managers and these software programs. Again, resume outlines or templates don’t focus on content and they certainly don’t help you create an ATS-compliant resume. In the end, you could miss out on some great opportunities simply because your resume wasn’t software-ready.

5. The Bottom Line – You Get What You Pay For
Free resume outlines and free resume templates won’t help you write stellar content, and cheap resumes also typically aren’t worth the price of the paper on which they are printed. Your best bet is to purchase a resume from a U.S.-based resume writing service.

It might cost a bit more, but you are investing in your future and that’s worth spending some money to ensure that you have a top-notch resume. How do you find the best resume writers? We can help.

In general, the best resume services are companies:
• Hire only full-time, professional, certified resume writers
• Belong to professional resume writing organization, such as NRWA or PARWCC.
• Provide samples of their work
• Offer customers a substantial guarantee

At Top5ResumeWriters.com, we can’t create your resume. We are a resume review site that studies and reviews resumes purchased from top resume writing companies. We conducted a study, creating a mystery client, and sent out identical information about this mystery shopper to dozens of resume companies.

Once we had the results, we gave the resumes to an independent review team. This group was comprised of professionals who were in positions to make hiring decisions, the very people that view hundreds of resumes each year. They were asked to rate each resume and select their top picks.

Our independent team unanimously selected Resume Writing Group as their top choice. They produced an eye-catching, dynamic resume that was also error-free. They offer competitive pricing, and they were the only resume company that contacted our mystery shopper directly to ask more questions, and the result was a thoughtful, strategic resume that truly highlighted the mystery client’s strengths.

While you can use resume outlines or templates or take your chances with a cheap resume, we highly recommend that you select a professional resume service. Resume Writing Group is an excellent option, and they have a unique guarantee. If you use their resume and follow their advice, but are not hired in 45 days or less, they will refund the cost of the resume and pay you an additional $100.

Writer Resume Samples: What You Need To Know

If you need a resume, should you hire a writer? Resume companies certainly will tell you that this is a crucial step, but also many hiring managers and headhunters also encourage job seekers to use professional services.

But should you hire a freelancer or go with a big resume company? As a company that reviews resumes produced by professional resume writers, we’ve found that looking at writing samples can be the best way to gauge the quality of the service or freelancer.

So, your first step should be to see if the company or person has resume samples up on the website and take a look at these samples. While you are reading the samples, keep the following ideas in mind.

1. Are There Any Errors?
As a resume review service, we’ve seen samples from hundreds of writers. Resume professionals make a surprising amount of mistakes, or so we’ve found. If you find even one spelling error, this is a huge red flag.

After all, if a writer or resume company is providing you with samples, you have to assume that they are showing off their best work, and not just some random first draft of a resume. Therefore, if you notice just one spelling error, what does this tell you about their attention to detail? Basically, it just looks sloppy and signals that this person definitely should not be your top pick.

But, don’t just look for spelling errors. Look for weirdly worded phrases or sentences that don’t quite flow correctly. If it seems weird to you, then it definitely will seem weird to a hiring manager.

2. Is the Format Consistent?
A good writer’s resume will be error-free, of course, but it also will be written in a consistent format. They won’t list skills with bullet points in one section and dashes in another. They won’t use bold text for job titles in one section and bold-italic text for job titles in another. Here’s an example of an inconsistent format:

Olive Garden/June, 2018-Present
• Managed 25-person staff including servers, cooks & support staff
• Implemented computerized scheduling system, decreasing absenteeism by 40%
• Supervised catering team for large-scale corporate events with 100+ guests

Pizza Port. February, 2016-June, 2018
– Managed 15-person staff, including servers, cooks & delivery workers
– Created weekly and monthly schedules for 40+ employees
– Developed incentive programs for low-traffic days, increased revenue by 25%

In the sample above, the resume writer italicized the name of the restaurant and work dates in the first work experience, but did not use italics in the second example. In the first example, bullet points were used to highlight tasks, while dashes were used in the second section. While the actual text is fine, the format is confusing and definitely distracts the reader.

Here’s an example of a consistent format:

Olive Garden/June, 2018-Present
• Managed 25-person staff including servers, cooks & support staff
• Implemented computerized scheduling system, decreasing absenteeism by 40%
• Supervised catering team for large-scale corporate events with 100+ guests

Pizza Port/February, 2016-June, 2018
• Managed 15-person staff, including servers, cooks & delivery workers
• Created weekly and monthly schedules for 40+ employees
• Developed incentive programs for low-traffic days, increased revenue by 25%

While the actual content is the same for both examples, the format is much better in the second example. When you are choosing a writer, resume consistency is an important factor, so be mindful of the format and the cleanliness of the design when making your selection.

3. Is the Content Dynamic?
When hiring managers read a resume, they typically spend less than one minute perusing the contents, at least on the first go around. A sloppy looking resume or a resume with errors, definitely won’t make the cut into the second round of reviews.

However, the actual content of the resume is obviously crucial. When you review a writer, the resume sample won’t necessarily be for a person in your industry. But, this doesn’t mean that you cannot evaluate the quality of the content.

Content for any resume should be dynamic, easy-to-read and truly showcase the skills of the applicant. Each work experience should include bullet points that exemplify and quantify the applicant’s skills and how these skills benefitted an employer.

For instance, if a resume states that an applicant “was responsible for managing the company sales team,” that’s definitely lackluster. Instead, a good resume writer might state that the applicant “managed a 12-person sales team, exceeded sales goals by 25-30% in 2016, 2017 & 2018.”

The second example provides a hiring manager with information about how many people the applicant managed and whether or not the person was a successful manager. Whenever a writer can provide clear examples of an applicant’s skills and successes, this is a sign that they are a competent resume writer.

4. Length & Overall Design
In general, most resumes should be no more than one page in length, if a resume writer creates a sample that runs for two full pages, this isn’t a good sign. It kind of tells you that the resume writer doesn’t know what items to include and which to exclude in a resume.

This can be tricky, but an experienced writer will know which items hiring managers truly want to see, and what information is just filler. Keep in mind again that hiring managers don’t really have time to read a huge, two-page resume. For some very high-level executive positions, a two-page resume or perhaps a third page is not a bad thing, but these are unique situations.

If the design is a bit too gimmicky, this also can be a bad sign. Too much design can distract from your message. Generally, it’s better to have a crisp, professional look with a consistent format. Adding colors and design elements really aren’t as important as content and consistency.

Our Reviews Can Help!
At Top5ResumeWriters, we’ve actually done quite a bit of the groundwork for you. We’ve reviewed resumes from many top-rated professional resume writing services and chosen several that offer outstanding services.

To select the best, we created a mystery client and sent the same information about this client to multiple resume companies. When we received the results, each resume was reviewed by an independent team of hiring managers and other professionals.

Many of the resumes we received contained errors or simply rehashed the basic information that the mystery client provided. Resume Writing Group, however, provided us with a stellar, error-free resume that contained all of the bells and whistles that hiring managers want to see.

When choosing a writer, Resume Writing Group should be at the top of your list. But if you opt for another company, we highly recommend that you use some of the tips listed in this article to help you select a great resume writer.

Beyond A Resume Critique: 4 Services Resume Writers Provide

If you already have a resume, but you need to dust it off and give it some updates, hiring a professional resume writer for a resume critique is a great idea. Likewise, if you’ve been sending out resumes and getting zero results, it’s also probably time for a resume critique.

Many professional resume writing services offer a resume critique service, although it might be called resume review or resume revision. However, if you’ve been having trouble attaining interviews, it’s often better to simply provide the writer with your information and just start from scratch, rather than trying to revise something that just isn’t working.

Resume writing is an art form, and that’s why so many people turn to the pros rather than try to create this document on their own. You might be tempted to opt for resume templates, but those only really help you with design and format, and not content, which is truly the most crucial aspect of any resume.

Additionally, resume writing services can help you with many other important job-hunting tasks, including cover letter writing, LinkedIn profile writing, career coaching and even writing thank you notes. Let’s take a quick look at each of these services.

Cover Letter Writing
If you thought crafting a great resume was difficult, this pales in comparison to writing a great cover letter. A cover letter provides you with a unique opportunity to expand upon your resume and showcase a bit of your personality. You have a chance to sell yourself to hiring managers, provided that your writing skills are strong and you truly understand the nuances of cover letter writing.

When writing a cover letter, it’s not uncommon for the person to come off looking somewhat arrogant or cocky. After all, you want to brag about yourself, and sometimes people tend to go a bit too far. A professional resume writer can strike a balance between too modest and too egotistical, making you appear confident and competent and as the type of employee that works well with others.

Not all employers want to see a cover letter along with your resume, but it’s a good idea to have a cover letter handy just in case it’s requested. We highly recommend that you always have an updated resume and cover letter at your disposal, so even if you aren’t actively looking for work, update these documents every six months so you are prepared if an unexpected opportunity arises.

LinkedIn Profiles
Too often, people forget about the power of LinkedIn, and that’s a shame because hiring managers and recruiters use this social media site all of the time to find new job candidates. LinkedIn is a powerful tool, but only if you truly take advantage of it.

Resume writing companies often offer LinkedIn profile writing services, as well as resume critiques and cover letter writing. These profiles are important because they often provide a first impression of you to a hiring manager. A well-written profile can spark interest and lead a hiring manager to call you in for an interview.

In addition to a top-notch profile, you will need to upload a professional-quality photograph. You also need to select the best keywords to match your abilities. When hiring managers and headhunters search for candidates, they use these keywords as their search criteria.

You can add these keywords under the skills section. For instance, if you are a graphic designer, you might list all of the design programs you use as well as your areas of specialization. This might include programs such as Photoshop, Illustrator, Adobe CS and InDesign. For skills, you might list UI Design, UX Design, Product Design, Branding, Photography, Logo Design and so forth, depending, of course, on your actual skill set.

Career Coaching
If you are having trouble with the interview process or you haven’t even started interviewing, but are worried about how to present your best self, career coaching can help. Likewise, if you just don’t seem to be excelling in your chosen field and feel a bit lost, a career coaching session can help.

Many resume service providers offer career coaching services. After all, resume writers have extensive experience writing for many different industries and they truly know what hiring managers need to see from job applicants.

Typically, a career coaching package includes a phone interview with a professional career coach and perhaps some documents to review that provide you with helpful tips and strategies to help jumpstart a job search or just to help you excel in your current job.

Thank You Letters
This might seem like something you could do yourself, and in many cases this is true. But if you are not a strong writer and are not sure what to say in a thank-you note, why not hire an expert? After all, this could make the difference between losing an opportunity and scoring your dream job.

Sending a thank-you note is a must-do task after any job interview. You absolutely should thank the hiring manager and anyone else that was present for the opportunity to interview. This truly does help to set you apart from other candidates, so either send a thoughtfully composed email or a handwritten thank you after every interview.

How To Find A Great Resume Writer
This is the tough part. There are tons of resume writers out there, but how do you find the best? Well, we can help. We don’t provide resume writing services, so we don’t offer a resume critique, cover letter writing or any of the other services mentioned above.

Our job is to review resumes from companies around the internet and determine which ones offer the best services. To do this, we created a “mystery client” and sent out this client’s information to many supposedly top-rated resume companies.

Once we received the resumes from these companies, we had an independent team review them, rate them and determine which companies provided the best resume services. This team was comprised of people who are or have been in the position to make hiring decisions, as they are typically the people that read these resumes in the first place.

The results were interesting. Many companies actually sent us back resumes with careless errors, such as obvious spelling mistakes. Others just simply rehashed the basic information we gave, with no real thought to strategy. Still, others did ok, but the quality didn’t overwhelmingly impress our review team.

Our team did pick a unanimous favorite, Resume Writing Group. This company produced a well-written, attractive and error-free resume that grabbed the attention of our reviewers. If you need a resume critique or any of the previously mentioned services, we highly recommend that you consider using Resume Writing Group as we found this company to provide the highest quality services.

Yes, You Can Get Great Resumes Fast

Most resume companies can provide you with a resume in 3-4 business days, but what happens when you need a great resume fast? When you need a fantastic resume in just 24-48 hours, it’s crucial that you find the best possible resume service, and we can help.

In general, you’ll save money if you opt for the regular service, but sometimes you just cannot afford to wait and really need great resumes fast. Let’s check out a few common reasons why people need rush resume services:

1. You Just Got Fired
Losing your job is always tough, but once the dust settles, it’s time to regroup and jump into a job search. Ensuring that you have a great, updated resume is huge, and this might be one of those times where it’s smart to invest in rush services, especially if you already know about one or two job openings in play.

2. Your Company Changed Owners
This isn’t always a cause for alarm, but if a company has a new owner, they definitely will be looking at the whole picture in terms of personnel and salaries and if two companies have merged, some positions likely will be made redundant.

While your job might be perfectly safe, it’s smart to get a new updated resume and brush up that LinkedIn profile so that you can jump start a job search if you are laid off or just unhappy with the new ownership.

3. Your Current Resume Isn’t Attracting Attention
If you’ve been searching for a new job, but your resume isn’t really attracting attention and you aren’t getting interviews, revising your resume might be a great idea. This is one of the best times to consider using a professional, as they can review what you already have, identify problem areas and redo the entire resume so that it attracts the attention of hiring managers. Additionally, you also might consider letting these professionals revise your cover letter if you’ve been sending those out as well.

4. A Huge Opportunity Has Developed
If you just found at that there is an opening at your dream workplace, this can be a great time to consider rushing your resume services. Usually, the hiring process takes some time, but if there is resume submission deadline and you don’t want to miss out, we recommend that you bite the bullet, so to speak, and opt for those rush services.

Of course, getting great resumes fast comes with a higher price tag, so you definitely want to select the best possible resume writing company. With so many choices available, it can be tough to decide which one is truly going to deliver a great product.

At Top 5 Resume Writers, we can’t provide you with great resumes fast, but we can help you find the best resume writers. We conducted a study of many of the top-ranked resume writing companies, and created a short list of companies that can provide you with a job-winning resume.

For our study, we created a mystery client and provided each resume company with the same information about this client. Once the resumes were completed we sent the results to a blind panel of experts. These people currently are or have been charged with hiring employees, and we wanted to see their take on which resumes truly attracted attention and would have inspired them to contact the mystery client.

The results were surprising. First of all, we were shocked at how many resume companies sent us resumes with spelling errors and grammar errors. There were a few that were well-written, but generally hiring managers throw out resumes with just one typo, so resumes with multiple errors definitely aren’t going to cut it.

Each member of our panel selected Resume Writing Group as their top pick. Obviously, they produced an error-free resume, but the resume also was dynamic and easy-to-read and we could tell that the writer took some time to think about strategy and wording. In fact, Resume Writing Group’s writer was the only company that contacted our mystery client to gather additional information.

Their pricing is comparable to what most professional resume writing companies charge, although it is important to note that rush services do cost more than the regular service. For regular service, Resume Writing Group estimates about 3 business days as its turnaround time for entry-level and professional-level resumes. If you need a senior executive resume or military or federal resumes, this might take an extra day or two due to the more complex nature of these types of resume.

Rush service for entry-level and professional-level resumes can be completed in just 1-2 business days and occasionally even faster. Resume Writing Group does state that the senior-level, military and federal resumes still usually take 3 business days, even with rush services. Of course, hiring decisions for these types of positions typically aren’t made as quickly as those for entry-level and lower-level professional positions, so this might not be as much of an issue.

While you might be tempted to save some money and opt for a less expensive resume company, we really recommend that you be wary of any resume writing service that promises an amazing resume for $49 or less. A basic entry level resume typically costs about $90-$100, and the prices go up from there. A cheap resume often equals cheap quality, so buyers beware.

Whether you need great resumes fast or you have a few days to wait for your resume, we highly recommend that you opt to use Resume Writing Group. They also can provide you with stellar cover letters, LinkedIn profile writing and even career coaching.