Pricing Freelance Résumé Services

salary negotiation

By Kamee Gilmore.

Price…the cost at which something is obtained. In the field of résumé writing, that “something” for our clients is their desired job or promotion as a result of the services we have provided.

In Canada, the average individual makes anywhere from $36,000 to $64,000 per year. If you break this down, a person makes from $139 to $244 per day. If our services help a client speed up their job hunt by even one week, then the immediate value to that person would be anywhere from $693.00 through $1222.00.

Chances are, by the time a prospective client has reached the point of realizing that they require professional help and have contacted you, they have already been out of work for at least a week, or have already missed a great opportunity or promotion.

Too many people do not understand the value of résumé services, or the talent and ongoing education that is required to create modern-day career marketing documents. Many of these prospective clients don’t realize that their résumé must not only stand out to the right audience but also get past the new screening technology, Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS).  Nor do they understand that this software is sifting through potentially thousands of résumés from qualified applicants who are also applying for those all-too-infrequent employment opportunities in today’s competitive job market. Essentially, they don’t know how to get the results you can.

It is important to understand and factor in this information when you are setting or re-evaluating your freelance rates. Because our industry is unregulated, there is no “blue book” to advise or control what we as independent contractors can charge. This also means that there are no licensing or certification requirements to prevent an unqualified person from claiming “Professional Résumé Writer” or “Career Professional” status. As a result, the quality of work, as well as prices, range significantly, making it difficult for credentialed, reputable professionals to gauge the value of their services and set a fair pricing schedule – fair for clients, and respectful of their own time and qualifications.

Prices are a personal decision. Professionals need to consider their comfort levels with charging, the degree of customer service they provide, and the level of clients they would like to attract. Someone who prefers to serve student or entry-level clients would likely have a lower price point than someone looking to appeal to and work with executive clients. Professionals just starting out in the field, perhaps lacking experience and/or clientele, may need to price themselves below other more experienced professionals who provide similar services. They can then increase and adjust their rates accordingly as they gain knowledge, experience, and exposure.

So how do you determine what your services should cost? There are plenty of informational posts on the web to help you strategize and determine your price schedule. Here are a few links that I found especially helpful, as I am currently re-evaluating my own services and prices.

In the end, you set your own price, but make sure that you are charging your client honestly and paying yourself fairly. The result of your custom-created work is invaluable to the client, and what you do to get those results truly is a talent worthy of fair compensation. If anyone could do it, clients wouldn’t be looking to hire you!

I hope this helps anyone who may be questioning or reconsidering their rates!

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You’ve nailed this topic Kamee. Career pros should charge fairly and honestly for the value they offer.

When a client looks to hire a career professional they are likely considering the return on investment (ROI); not just the monetary cost. Price and value are two different things. If a career pro can clearly stated what they can offer the client (top resume = increased visibility = faster/shorter job search = potential higher compensation) then the value is clear. I always tell my clients that my executive resume writing services are an investment in themselves and their career. I try to make the value clear so there is less emphasis on cost.