The Resume

Can These 2 Software Programs Help you Write the Perfect Resume?

It’s another Man vs. Machine topic – can computer software really help you create the perfect resume?  Here’s a review of two online software tools designed to help you with your resume.

is an online application that allows a user to upload their resume as a Word document to submit through a sophisticated program that analyzes the content based on several metrics and gives you a grade.  The website says the metrics come from hiring managers, certified resume writers, and HR Directors which is a pretty good mix of the kind of people you’d want to judge resumes.  I have helped many people with their resumes over the years and trends have changed over time and there is still much debate on best practices for certain parts of a resume.  For instance, across the board, expert resume writers, HR Directors, and Hiring Managers all still have different views on whether or not an address should be on the resume, whether you should have an objective, the best way to format, or even factors such as how the resume is designed.  A Graphic Designer’s resume is likely to look completely different and may use color, and some subtle creative graphics or include a personal logo whereas an MBA graduate will likely have the same ol’ headline, summary, and quantifiable results written in their experience section.  That being said, I don’t know how the software would account for differences in industries and am not convinced that it does.

When I submitted several resumes through the software, it gave different results.  Ironically, a resume that had helped a student of mine get multiple interviews was rated as a D whereas another resume that wasn’t nearly as well targeted and designed got a B-.  I even took a resume and modeled it after the sample “A” resume the website has in it’s demo section and that turned the resume from a B- to a D making it worse.  After all this, I still think the tool is very helpful.  It gives some good feedback and provides feedback on three metrics including brevity, impact, and depth.  Ironically, the site prompts you to pay for their service to review your resume in more depth so you have to be somewhat skeptical of a tool designed for profit.  I do think it is worth using to get some quick feedback but ultimately, if you have access to a Career Coach, have an expert, qualified professional review your resume.  I give rezscore a B- because it is a good tool that forces resume writers to strive for a better advertisement and it does give good advice but it can’t account for all variables.

What do you think of rezscore?

Resunate is an online tool that claims to help you focus your resume toward a specific position.  The idea that software can automate the process of helping an individual target their resume toward the needs of a specific job sounded unbelievable to me!  This is perhaps one of the most challenging aspects of writing a resume and the decision-making process that one needs to go through to decide what to include in their resume and what to exclude is complex.  Moreover, what words you choose and how you layout your information are other decisions that need to be made beyond deciding what to include and eliminate.  I tried the software and something I thought was immediately cool was that you could upload your resume or upload your LinkedIn profile so that you didn’t have to create a resume from scratch again in the software system which can be a tedious task.  This part was easy enough.  I then cut and pasted a job description into the software so that it could help me target my existing resume for the job.  The system analyzed the information and when it was done, I was thoroughly disappointed.

The system did a horrible job of identifying what to eliminate and what to keep and didn’t seem to have a sophisticated enough analysis mechanism to make better decisions.  For instance, when employers review resumes, they may see something such as an accomplishment that isn’t directly related to the needs of the job but may imply a transferable skill extremely valuable.  The software didn’t make such decisions resulting in poor suggestions of what to eliminate.  As a Career Coach, what worries me about this software is that a less experienced person may rely on the choices being made by the software resulting in a resume that isn’t as effective as it could be.  The software concept is good but in this case, I believe it is poorly executed.

I do not recommend resunate.  What do you think of it?


  • I don’t like resunate either. Let’s be real. You can get everything they offer at no cost on other websites. I feel if you are willing to put in the work, you can find plenty of resources online at little to no cost and design an “out of the park” resume.

  • I much prefer Rezscore. It has its limitations, but I feel for some generalist or ‘stop gap’ work and in the absence of a careers coach or someone with realistic views of the market it is very helpful.
    I don’t think it looks at formatting – I’ve had resumes and CVs get the same score where the content is the same, but where the difference between formatting is vast. Personally, I would still get a second opinion and use a template from Reed.

    Resunate is much more disappointing. It forces the user to stick to some horribly difficult to read formats. Also one sample took my grades out of context and listed it under achievements out of context. Even if I edit it to address the problem it doesn’t look good and over values the importance of grades.

    On a final note, I would say if it come down to CV writing there may be something bigger wrong. I saw a Washington Post article which gives the correct numbers for listings (~1000 apply, 25 telephoned, 5 interviewed in person) but comes up with the wrong conclusions i.e. that the 25 just had the best CVs/resumes. That varies – even at junior level just having the right experience/background alone beats any of this CV hacking. People will probably misunderstand this and fob it off, but my experience is that whenever I’ve done retail jobs, it is a case of being one of hundreds, but in my professional career, even for the first job I did, just applying for the RIGHT job got me into the 95th percentile (as Rezscore would call it).

    Often what happens is that people muck up in their careers and have to do something a bit better than a CV rewrite or looking for a magical ‘bridging role’ that probably doesn’t exist, to sort it out. Sometimes networking will help, other times it might even be a case of go back to school – unfortunately people have lost the plot with ‘positive thinking’ and are too afraid to be accused by uninformed people of ‘underestimating themselves’ to admit their career came to a grinding halt.

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