Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Recruiters: "Competition" for Resume Writers?

I wrote the following in 2002:

There was a comment made in the Recruiter's Panel at the CMI Conference (now the Career Management Alliance) in San Diego in 2002 that sometime in the future, recruiters may get into the résumé-writing business. I would argue, some already have.

For the sake of argument, permit me to comment on this.

• Most recruiters already make 100K and don't need the income from resume writing to make a living. Therefore, they probably won't troll in the same "waters" we do for clients. (However, they might employ staff for this role, as it might not be a task they want to offer THEMSELVES but want to offer as a firm.)
• Two can play that game. What keeps resume writers from taking on recruitment roles? (There are already several resume writers who are excellent role models for this within the industry.)
• There might be an opportunity for resume writers to more closely affiliate with recruiters who want to offer this service, but don't want to take on staff or do it themselves.
• Recruiters might increase their appreciation of resume writers as they see how difficult our part of the job is. (I certainly have a respect for how difficult THEIR job can be.)

• It's easier for recruiters to find the prospects -- people are always sending resumes to recruiters; if they're bad, they're in a perfect position to recommend that their resume needs to be redone.
• Recruiters don't need to make money off the resumes they do; their primary profit centers are the fees paid to them by employers. Ergo, they can/will underprice most resume writers.
• Unlike most resume writers, recruiters know the target EXACTLY. (Resume writers can usually get it about 98% right *grin*). When they create the resume, they also know what to emphasize to get that particular job. Almost every time.

Keep an eye on this topic -- it's going to be hot in the next couple of years.

All right, it's five years later. What's the reality?

I know of several resume writers who subcontract write for recruiting firms. I know of a few resume writers who also do recruiting. For the most part, the status quo has reigned. But that's not to say that things won't change in the next five years. Stay tuned. I'll have more for you on this topic.

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