May 2023

by Amanda Brandon, NCOPE – NRWA Newsletter Editor

Hi NRWA friends!

Welcome to May! I’m going to keep my intro short and sweet this month. I hope you’re all enjoying the spring weather. Let’s get right to the news!

In our feature article, Norine Dagliano reminds us why the NRWA is the premier training organization for resume writers. Take a look at all of our excellent educational opportunities.

Amanda Brandon

Amanda Brandon

We have a new column debuting this month from Lisa Dupras. She’s writing on all things tech and analyzed payment tools and CRMs this month. If you have a topic you’d like her to explore, please email us at

I’m also so excited about our member spotlight. Ed Lawrence has such a cool story, and I can’t wait for you all to read about his work with job candidates who are over 50.

Finally, I’m still looking for at least two versatile writers for features, member profiles, and DEI topics. Be sure to take a look at the Perspective job description I put together in lieu of a DEI column for this month. If you’re interested, please reach out to me.

As always, if you have ideas or want to be added to the Member Spotlight list, please drop me a line at

Thanks for reading!

In This Issue:

  • Feature Article: Why the NRWA Is the Leader in Resume Writer Training 

  • Tech TalkWhich Payment Platform Is Right for Your Resume Writing Business?

  • Perspective: What Makes a Great DEI Columnist

Feature Article: Why the NRWA Is the Leading Source for Resume & Cover Letter Training  
By Norine Dagliano, NCRW, NCOPE, NRWA Written Communication Chair

Whether you write resumes and cover letters for a living, advise and coach job seekers about their resumes and cover letters, teach classes and workshops on resumes and cover letters, or simply have an interest in the current standards and best practices, the NRWA has a training for you.

Eustacia English

Norine Dagliano

Whether you write resumes and cover letters for a living, advise and coach job seekers about their resumes and cover letters, teach classes and workshops on resumes and cover letters, or simply have an interest in the current standards and best practices, the NRWA has a training for you.

Check out our various options: 

  • Resume Writing 101: The NRWA’s self-paced learning program delivers practical, ready-to-use resume writing tips in downloadable PDF documents to improve your skills, whether you’re a seasoned professional or just starting out in the field. Free to members.

  • Current and On-Demand Webinars: Recordings of our live monthly webinars taught by industry experts, each taking a deep dive into a specific aspect of resumes and cover letters – everything from planning the strategy to ensuring the final document is ATS-compatible (dozens of topics from which to choose!) Webinars include a PowerPoint deck, supplemental handouts, and pre-recorded Q&A. Prices vary from free to $19.99 for members and $19.99 to $39.99 for nonmembers. Access all past and upcoming webinars here.

  • Writing Excellence Foundations: This instructor-facilitated, self-paced class includes more than 4 hours of recordings, the NCRW Study Guide, 4 PowerPoint slide decks, more than 50 pages of supplemental handouts, and self-assessment quizzes – providing a solid foundation in the standards and best practices for writing modern résumés and cover letters.

    Cost: $595 for members and $795 for nonmembers, which includes a one-year membership to the NRWA. Take advantage of the early-bird discount and register by May 19 to save $75! Participants who complete the 4 core modules can register for one or both add-on modules, each targeting a specific client demographic ($150 each).
    Get more details on Writing Excellence Foundations here.

  • Writing Excellence Certification Bootcamp: Soon to be launched, this intensive 6-week course is led by a Nationally Certified Résumé Writer who will guide and mentor you in fine-tuning your skills in writing modern resumes and cover letters. Each week participants will be assigned custom writing assignments, reviewed by the instructor, and discussed in class. Between classes, participants can take advantage of one-on-one mentoring from the instructor by email, phone, or Zoom. This training is reserved for those who are serious about attaining the NCRW credential and have demonstrated – through a sample submission – the potential to achieve it.

    Cost: $995 for members and $1,170 for nonmembers (includes a one-year membership to the NRWA).

Why Train with the NRWA

If certification is your ultimate goal, depending on your current skill level, any of these options can get you there. And if you’re simply interested in learning new skills or updating what you already know, we offer more training options than anyone in the industry.

Need help deciding which option is best for you? Email Kathy Keshemberg at or Norine Dagliano at for more guidance on the right program for your experience.

Tech Talk: Which Payment Platform is Right for Your Resume Writing Business? 

By Lisa Dupras, NCOPE, CPH

Editor’s Note: With all of the talk about AI and tech tools I see on our Facebook group, I realized that we need to cover technology topics more often in our newsletter. Lisa Dupras stepped up to take on this exciting and sometimes overwhelming topic. I invite you to share your questions on all things tech with her. Send your questions to

Lisa Dupras

Using an online payment application that meets both the needs of our clients and our business is crucial for small business owners. Nothing can ruin a budding relationship faster than money problems!

Do you remember handwritten invoices? Although the process was straightforward, it was also time-consuming and error prone. Today's online payment systems are easy to use, mobile-friendly, AND can save your business time and money. 

The COVID-19 pandemic accelerated an already upward trend toward online payments. PayPal reported a remarkable 40% increase in transactions between 2020 and 2022. Paper checks are no longer necessary! Invoice details can be securely stored in the cloud and easily integrated with other data to facilitate better business decision-making. To stay ahead of the competition and ensure the smooth running of your business, selecting the best-fit digital payment application is essential.

Many discussions in our NRWA forums focus on the pros and cons of various payment apps. To contribute to this conversation, I conducted a comprehensive review of popular applications. I evaluated Venmo, Google Pay, and Zelle as simple digital payment options. For more complex invoicing and payment services, I reviewed Square, PayPal, Stripe, Braintree, and Honeybook. I leveraged ChatGPT to design a process for ranking the customer service of each application.

I defined quality customer service as having the following characteristics:

  • Support teams: Customers should be able to get help quickly and easily from knowledgeable and friendly support staff.

  • Online chat support: Customers should be assisted 24/7 via online chat.

  • Wait time: Customers should not wait long to speak to a support representative.

  • Issue resolution: Issues should resolve quickly and efficiently.

  • Problem-solving: Customers should experience solutions that solve their problems. 

ChatGPT reviewed available data from customer reviews, online app stores, social media platforms, and online forums. Sentiment analysis identified keywords and labeled them positive or negative. For example, the word helpful in a customer review labeled the comment as positive. Data was compiled, ranked, and reported as a percentage of positive reviews.

A few additional observations on the different payment applications:

  • Zelle received the most positive comments for its simple mobile application.

  • Stripe and Honeybook scored highest for more complex invoicing and payment services.

  • Stripe ranked highest in payment options, processing, and the number of currencies offered. If you do business outside the U.S., Stripe could be an attractive option.
  • Venmo performed the best among the simple payment applications.

  • Square and FreshBooks had reporting capabilities that far surpassed those of other applications, with multiple options for financial analysis.

  • Free online payment options like Google Pay, Zelle, and Venmo may save business expenses but have limited reporting and analytical capabilities.

This analysis is solely for comparison purposes and relies on data gathered by ChatGPT. All-in-one applications that provide additional capabilities, such as task automation, were excluded from this evaluation.

As career coaches and resume writers, we all share common business goals. However, each of our business needs may differ. This information can be beneficial for you to take a closer look at and consider the changes you may need to make.

Please contact me if you would like to review the more detailed analysis or get assistance with a more in-depth review using ChatGPT or other artificial intelligence tools.

Lisa Dupras is a resume writer, career coach, and owner of Elev8 Resumes and Coaching in Lanoka Harbor, NJ. She specializes in helping folks pivot into IT careers. She is NCOPE-certified and offers job search coaching and interview preparation services. Connect with her at

For more information on how to present education in a resume, please review Section IV Additional Sections of the NCRW Study Guide. You can also access more training on this topic in the free-for-NRWA members Resume 101 Self-Module 7: New College Graduate Resumes.

Perspective: What Makes a Great DEI Columnist
By Amanda Brandon, NRWA Newsletter Editor 

Editor’s Note: I’m rerunning this article to show how important DEI is for our organization. We believe that highlighting the ways we can help bring visibility to biases and diversity in the jobs we do for our clients is critical. If you feel called to share your expertise in this area, please contact me at Thank you!

Amanda Brandon

Amanda Brandon

Our long-time DEI columnist Eustacia English is taking a step back, and while we’re sad to see her step out of this role, it creates an opportunity for a new voice or voices to amplify our position on this essential topic.

Here’s a list of qualifications I put together for this important part of our signature publication.

  • A volunteer or group of volunteers who can take on this monthly commitment.

  • A volunteer/volunteers who actively invest in training and thought leadership on DEI topics.

  • A volunteer who can apply DEI to writing resumes, LinkedIn profiles, and career branding topics.

  • A punctual, dedicated writer. No publication experience is required. If you’ve never written a column before, don’t be afraid to submit your name. I’ve been working with up-and-coming columnists for 20 years. I can help you polish your writing for a publication audience. My greatest need is interest, content, and dedication.

  • Open to feedback. Putting together a newsletter for a niche audience requires continuous improvement on my part and the writers’ part. Even as an editor, my team of proofreaders helps me sharpen my writing and understand our organization’s take on topics. You must be open to constructive feedback to be successful in this role.

If you are interested in working on our DEI column on a semimonthly or monthly basis, please email me at I’m looking forward to your responses.

NRWA Member Spotlight: Ed Lawrence
By Amanda Brandon, NRWA Newsletter Editor

Editor’s Note: Ed Lawrence has been on my NRWA Member Spotlight list for a while. His work with mature candidates intrigued me the first time I read one of his Facebook comments. I’m excited for you all to get to know Ed better. Enjoy!

Ed Lawrence

NRWA: How did you get started in resume writing?

EL: As many others did, I started writing in general long before writing resumes. I attended the oldest high school in the United States (Boston Latin), which gave me a solid foundation in writing. At Boston University, I was exempted from first-year English and worked my way up to Advanced Composition.

Before transitioning to career coaching, I worked for 30 years as a high-tech trainer and instructional designer, so I wrote many how-to booklets, training manuals, and more. Naturally, I was writing my own resumes and providing help for friends.

NRWA: What is your current business focus? Where do you see yourself growing?

EL: After seven years, I’m still pondering the focus of my own business. Right now, I’m a generalist offering a full suite of career services. The bulk of my work has been with mature (age 50+) job seekers—because of my work with the Massachusetts Councils on Aging (MCOA). But I love working with college students and recent graduates, too. I’m fortunate that many of my clients refer their kids to me.

I’m not actively trying to grow my business. In addition to my Getstart-ed business, I have three part-time gigs. I aim for a handful of my own clients, enough to keep busy.

NRWA: What educational opportunities have you explored to help you grow?

EL: I am a stereotypical life-long learner. In fact, when I consider the previous question—Where do you see yourself growing—what really comes to mind is growing as a person. When I was really young, I was told I had a tremendous IQ. But back then, no one told me about EQ. I’m perpetually working on that.

Every day, I watch some YouTube videos on history, career theory, sociology, and economics. My wife has a master’s degree in counseling, so I pick her brain on some things. And between the two of us, we have seven or eight bookcases. Finally, I am always looking for webinars from the NRWA and other agencies.

NRWA: Why did you join the NRWA?

EL: I joined the NRWA because of the excellent NCRW training materials. I stay because of the webinars, newsletters, and networking opportunities. And, of course, the membership and credentials provide credibility. Prospects want to work with someone who has respectable credentials.

NRWA: I love that you help older adults with job searches and that you work at the library. How did you get started with this? How does this fulfill you as a resume writer?

EL: I joke that my last decade of work proves the value of happenstance and networking. As I aged and found my high-tech career not so satisfying, I hired a career counselor (Gail Liebhaber). She ultimately noted my interest in career services and introduced me to Ofer Sharone, a sociologist researching long-term unemployment (LTU), and a team of career coaches. This group became the Institute for Career Transitions (ICT). All these coaches taught me for five years.

In 2017, while unemployed and searching for my next job, I helped an unemployed friend prep for an interview. He suggested I should do this for others. So, I started a practice-interview group at the Framingham Public Library. It turns out there was a significant demand.

Meanwhile, my wife introduced me to volunteering at Career Collaborative, an agency that assisted under-represented groups. There, I met a coach who later was my referral to a job at a Massachusetts State Career Office (MassHire MSW).

After I left the state position, the dominos all fell in my favor. MassHire sent me to present to the MCOA. The MCOA facilitator was my referral to a contract job at the Boston University (BU) Center for Career Development and to a presenter position for the MCOA’s 50+ Job Seeker program. My leader at BU called me last month and invited me to apply for a job coach position at Transition Solutions, which I start this month.

As for the library—They called me! Their wonderful resume writer, Mary, was retiring, and they needed a new writer. The librarian who called me said my name came up during their search because I offered the free practice interviewing every month. I was hired just before the pandemic, which stopped the in-person sessions. It took a couple of months, but the library got permission for me to offer the job-help sessions over Zoom. It’s been very successful. We are typically booked two weeks out, as I only work half a day on Thursdays.

”How does this fulfill me as a resume writer?” This question reminds me of how I helped a client at MassHire who was ecstatic when they picked their new resume off the printer. They had never had a resume before. The expression on their face was pure joy. I am privileged to experience this with many library clients. Some are clients of social services agencies, such as the South Middlesex Opportunity Council (SMOC). They are a joy to work with—striving to improve their lives—and they are so appreciative.

NRWA: Have you attended the NRWA conference before? What other events? What value did you receive?

EL: So far, I’ve only attended online events: webinars, mixers, etc. I check the NRWA Facebook page daily. I’m also in Tom Powner’s NCOPE group.

How can I sum up the value? Tough to be concise…I’ll say the NRWA events teach me things I didn’t even know I didn’t know. There’s a ton of value in that.

And because I trust the NRWA presenters, I’ve had the confidence to disagree (politely, I hope) with some online people who state opinions or present outdated info (no longer facts).

In addition to his certifications in resume writing (CPRW), LinkedIn (NCOPE), and interviewing (CIC), Ed is a certified DISC, MBTI, Strong Interest Inventory, and Skillscan administrator. Connect with Ed at

New & Renewing Members 

Welcome to our new and renewing members for the month of April 2023! 
Click here to view the full list.

By the numbers for the month of April:

  • 12 new members.
  • 6 new members from the East Coast. 
  • 42 renewing members.
  • 25 renewing Members from the East Coast. 
Feel free to introduce (or reintroduce) yourself via our members-only networking forums:

You can find colleagues in your area by searching here
Not yet a member of the NRWA? Click here to join!

We’ve done land, we’ve done sea, and we’ve gone virtual. In response to popular demand, this year the NRWA is going hybrid! We invite you to join us as we Ascend to New Heights in Colorado Springs, CO.

Taking on our biggest challenge yet, the National Résumé Writers Association will be hosting a variety of educational programming, both in person and virtually. As always, join us live for the best experience, which includes in-depth workshops, featured presentations, and extensive opportunities for networking. For those who are unable to join us in person, we will be live streaming selected presentations featuring our most popular topics and trending discussions.  

Highlights to this years’ conference include our keynote, featured speaker, and preconference presentation. Additionally, we are bringing our conference to life by joining our in-person and hybrid audiences together through an event app that will promote engagement and networking to a larger audience.


Professional Development 

electronic learning

The NRWA offers live and on-demand webinars, a self-paced Resume Writing 101 course, teleseminars, and more opportunities for learning throughout the year.


Certification Programs 

NCRW - Nationally Certified Resume Writer
NCOPE - Nationally Certified Online Profile Expert

Resume Experts

Visit our public-facing companion site to access our directory of resume experts, learn more about how we help job seekers, and read our Ask the Experts blog.


Affiliate Partners

Platinum Level: Distinctive Resume Templates, WriteSea; Silver Level: Indeed, Profiling Pro, Resume Products, Web Pages That Sell

Follow Us on Social Media:

Facebook    Twitter    Pinterest    LinkedIn    Instagram

Click here to join our mailing list!

Copyright © 2023 The National Résumé Writers' Association, All rights reserved.
You are receiving this email because you opted in at

The National Résumé Writers' Association  |  303-433-4446
12110 N. Pecos Street, #220, Westminster, CO 80234