When you apply in person, they might give you an application
to fill out. It's best to avoid that by handing them your resume, because a job
application usually contains some sections, which you prefer not to fill out, yet
the receptionist checks it and insists on filling out everything. However, if she
agrees to take your resume instead or in addition to the application for employment,
then that's a better option.
Having your resume written by any service is simply not worth it. You can do it
yourself by keeping in mind a few basic rules. You can read about these rules
on the Internet or from a book like "C. Edward Good:
Does Your Resume Wear Blue Jeans?"
Yes, it's an old book, but the rules have changed only a little bit,
namely to now include consciously inserting keywords with the goal to be picked
up by search engines on the Internet or by resume parsing software used at hiring
companies, agencies and job boards.
Otherwise, if you decide to pay a resume writing service, you will dearly pay the
price and not find a job, because those services are a fraud, a scam. They're staffed
with people, who don't really know, what they're doing and who should be looking for
jobs themselves, but as long as you pay them, they take the easy way out and they
don't have to. So you don't profit from them, only they do by making a good living
off of you, especially now in a recession. Definitely to avoid is this company:
ResumeRabbit.com (a paid service, which registers you automatically with 87 job
boards on the Internet for $59.95) forwarded to me an e-mail with a link to
The link took me to Bakos Group's website, where I could upload my resume for a
free evaluation (see Free Resume Critique 1
and 2 at
Then I got back these results after 3 days. Here are
the expanded views of all 4 error groups:
They're trying to scare us by using words like "lethal defects", because who wants
his resume to have any lethal defects and not do anything about them, right?
So to justify that, they bring up Unemployment as the
first defect, because who doesn't have some periods of unemployment here and there?
So they're playing on it, even though my resume didn't show ANY period of unemployment.
This was suspicious, of course, but these people want to make you insecure, so you start
thinking: even though I didn't leave any gaps in my resume, maybe I missed something or
something can be interpreted as a gap, which I don't consider as such, but hey, these
are professional resume writers, so you trust them, right? Well, wrong! These are scammers!
All the time I was thinking, just where in the world did they get this "unemployment" idea
from by analyzing my uploaded resume? It just wasn't in it.
But then there was the second lethal defect, which could have been true:
Entrepreneurship / Self-Employment / Family Business.
Sure, it can be interpreted by an employer as a coverup attempt of unemployment
by the applicant, but on the other hand, would all employers really punish you
for really having done some business in your past? Why should you be ashamed of
having been successful before or at least showing that you're open-minded towards
entrepreneurship and that you understand, what running a business means? These
are all good traits and if you ran a successful business, which you were proud
of, then why should you hide it? So again I was thinking, why is there a need to
hide something legitimate and positive, but after all, they're the professional
resume writers, so they have more excperience with how employers think, than me,
since they're dealing with hiring managers every day, right? Well, wrong again!
They're just trying to intimidate you, but in reality it's not necessarily bad
to have been self-employed. Especially, if by that period you can also demonstrate
other skills that you were good at and utilized, gathering experience in that
For example: freelance translation. It proves that you're proficient in
several languages and that agencies have worked with you for a long time, because
they recognized and respected your unique knowledge and professionalism for years.
And that's exactly how it was with me. So why should I be ashamed of a period,
when I was appreciated? And leaving this job doesn't necessarily say, it's your
fault, because I left after 2 years. People just need a change sometimes or hope
to make more money elsewhere or a market has dried up. Whatever it is, it's not
necessarily negative upon us, as the Bakos Group wants us to believe! But again,
you trust them and that's why you finally sign up for their services. But that's
exactly how they lure you in, that's all it is!
So I finally signed up online for their paid service of $189. But first of all,
it's an unfair practice that they don't post a conspicuous (easily detectable/visible)
link on their website to their prices. They do have a
price list page at
http://www.bakosgroup.com/prices.htm, but the link to this page can only be found
at the bottom of your Free Resume Critique results
page (For details on BAKOSresume options and prices), so their prices are not visible
to the general public, but only to those, who have first submitted a resume to them
and then received the free results back.
At http://www.bakosgroup.com/flash/bakos_newest.html they have a Flash presentation,
where one of the 5 topics is Samples & Prices, but it doesn't show you any prices
and just says this:
"Review our samples provided below. Remember all BAKOSresumes are customized and we
offer a wide range of options - starting at under $100 - depending on your needs and
Then it just goes on encouraging us to submit a resume for a free evaluation and
shows us 2 sample resumes, but no price list. So not only is the heading Samples
& Prices deceptive, because everyone expects a price list and not just a talk about
prices, but the "starting at under $100" statement is an outright LIE, because if
you look at the price list, which you can access only after receiving your free
results, the cheapest price is $189.
You first have to click on a price button to order, then your shopping cart page
appears with that item already in it. Then you have to click on Checkout, then
log in or create a new account and only then will you see an item for about $45
or if you click on Continue Shopping from the shopping cart page, but this is a
different price list from the one mentioned above. How can they have 2 price lists:
a complete and an incomplete one? That's deceptive, too! And this is also deliberately
hiding the prices and the cheapest price, so this is clearly an illegal gimmick!
I received my first draft 8 days later, which contained the following faults:
wild claims that were never present in my initial resume I gave to them,
because I've never had any experience in those areas and know nothing about and have had
nothing to do with them ever, basically outright lies made up on my behalf such as:
- disaster planning
- data security
- cost reduction
- years of hands-on experience developing and administrating Oracle databases fo progressive
bad English, typos and incorrect jargon such as:
- administrating (instead of administering)
- file out 1003 (instead of fill out 1003)
bad, unprofessional, disorganized, hard-to-read, messy style:
dumping items of a list continuously on the same line
(instead of giving a separate line for each item for easier overview, readability at
a glance, in order to save time for the hiring manager, who has stacks of hundreds of
resumes to deal with)
Which is better,
A (their version) or
B (my version)?
emphasizing the wrong items, while leaving the relevant items unconspicuous (compare
my Japanology B.A. was less relevant (yet emphasized), than the rest of the items
(which included 2 computer-related courses!), because with this resume I was trying to
land a computer-related job like PC technician, network administrator, etc., but they
would never let me talk directly to the actual resume writer and my message regarding
this employment goal was never relayed to him (and my cover letter never forwarded to
him), although I certainly mentioned it on the phone and in my e-mail to Chris
their resume was 2 pages, while mine was only 1 page:
it's a basic rule in resume writing that a hiring manager should no have to read more,
than 1 page and even if sometimes 2 pages are still acceptable, 1 is always better,
than do, so if the Bakos Group doesn't know this, then where's their professionalism
and experience in resume writing?
inconsistencies, inefficiencies in style such as (compare
adding spaces unnecessarily before and after slashes and dashes
- why write NetCom / TestOut with spaces,
when they wrote MCSA/MCSE without spaces?
- why write 1990 - 1991 with spaces, which disconnects the two,
when omitting spaces would rationally connect 1990-1991 more and
when writing 1990-91 would be even shorter (easier to read)?
On the same moring, when I received the draft, I called Bakos Group and informed
Dan that I was very unhappy even with my initial resume. He promised to get me another
But he also said that customers cannot contact their resume writers directly. Because
of this policy it seems to me that the reason they're hiding those writers from us is,
because all their writers are probably freelancers, so they don't want us to cut the
Bakos Group out and make a direct, private deal with a certain writer. I understand
this precaution, but not having resume writers on permanent staff and outsourcing it
instead is not professional at all for such a seemingly professional company, at
least based on their professional-looking website. In other words things are not,
what they seem, even if a website looks professional! Plus a company raking in such
big bucks should not be as cheap as hiring only freelancers. That's a red flag, too!
Anyway, the whole day nobody from the Bakos Group got back to me, so I e-mailed
them again, complaining that it shouldn't take more, than a full day just to find
another resumer writer.
3 days later I got an e-mail from Chris at Bakos Group saying that they cancelled
my order and I have been approved for a refund.
7 days later I was notified by them by e-mail that my $189 were refunded. Obviously
they preferred to get rid of me, instead of providing a good service, because they were
scared that I have a valid case, so I could take my complaint further to government
authorities, which I indeed would have. But what about having wasted my time with these
crooks from 2-14-2009 through 3-11-2009, for a month? Well, that's why I wrote this
article, in order to warn others about resume writing services in general and about
the Bakos Group in specific. Stay away from them! You can do it yourself by observing
a few basic rules and keep your money, too.