Re: Tech writer who can't write a resume

Subject: Re: Tech writer who can't write a resume
From: Heli Roosild <HeliR -at- MSMAILHQ -dot- NETIMAGE -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 7 Dec 1995 17:23:00 PST

In an earlier message, I had said,

"I doubt I'd hire any writer who did NOT write his/her own [resume]."

Subsequently, Win Day asked,

"But, Heli, why not? A resume is a marketing piece, not a technical

To which I respond, "Weeell, I'm not entirely convinced." In the case of a
professional writer, I consider a resume to be a writing sample--one over
which the author has complete control and choice, as opposed to many
"official" writing samples where the author may have been constrained (or
helped) by any number of conditions (corporate style, collaboration with
other writers, an editor, etc.).

I guess my thinking is more in line with what Tracy Boyington said so
wonderfully well:

" a technical writer, I need the ability to:
- write for a specific audience -- find out what they need and give it
to them
- format information in a way that my reader can easily find what
they want
- accurately describe what I'm writing about...whether it's software,
hardware, or my work experience
- use correct spelling and grammar
- write clearly
- write consisely and winnow out anything that my audience does not

All of the skills are also needed to produce a good resume. ..."

BTW, having heard all the arguments in favor of hiring an expert, I have
begun to think I might feel differently if I were working as an independent
consultant rather than a company employee. In that case, yes, a resume
probably becomes a critical piece of marketing. And yes, I think in the
future I will look at it differently when hiring a consultant.

So thanks, y'all!


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