The Military Spouse Resume Writers’ Coalition (MSRWC) was created by a group of military spouse professional resume writers who work together to increase the awareness of military spouse and veteran employment issues, engage with organizations to improve access to military spouse and veteran employment, connect employers with military spouses and veterans, and provide access to much-needed resources, including the latest resume industry trends.
Amy Schofield, Navy spouse and owner of Schofield Strategies, LLC, created the coalition in July 2015 after seeing a need for a group of industry experts to join together. “There are a lot of career resources out there for military spouses and veterans, but oftentimes the resources do not contain the most recent information,” Schofield says. “Military spouses and veterans are highly employable, but if they are using resumes with trends from five years ago, they may not be successful on the job search front no matter how qualified they are.”
That is where the MSRWC comes in. MSRWC members stay up to date with employment industry trends through ongoing professional development, certification programs, and connecting with industry representatives on a daily basis. “We live and breathe resumes,” Schofield says. “We keep track of the latest trends, applicant tracking systems, and resources, and we know what works and what doesn’t work.
“Most importantly, we understand the community intimately. The coalition’s members are all military spouses, and some are also veterans themselves. We know first-hand what it is like to move, to re-brand military skills, and to strive to build a career while living the military lifestyle, or when leaving it. We are passionate about empowering their fellow members of the military community to be successful in the job market and welcome the opportunity to share their expertise in this area,” states Melanie Brassfield, Navy spouse, Royal Australian Air Force veteran, and owner of Career Wordsmith, LLC.
In addition, Schofield saw a need to unite other military spouse resume writers. The group consists of military spouses from across the world who own their own business, serve as college career advisors, work on Department of Defense military programs, and have been veteran transition program specialists. The members hold prestigious industry certifications and credentials, including Nationally Certified Resume Writer, Academy Certified Resume Writer, Certified Professional Resume Writer, Certified Employment Interview Professional, Master of Arts in Organizational Management, and Master of Human Resources.
“The coalition’s members achieved their certifications in resume writing through rigorous national programs, have sample resumes included in industry-leading publications, speak at national conferences on military spouse and veteran employment, and pride themselves on remaining up-to-date with industry developments through professional training and membership in national and international resume writing associations. We have a finger on the pulse of the job market, the trends in job search technology, and the need for professional career branding,” according to Brassfield.
Schofield has personally mentored some of the military spouses within the group during their initial stages of creating their business and thought that by creating the MSRWC, the group would be another way to mentor and support other military spouse resume writing professionals.
Others agree that the MSRWC fills a need. “Upon hearing about the Military Spouse Resume Writers’ Coalition, I joined without hesitation. This forum provides professional military spouses, within the same industry, with an opportunity to brainstorm, ask questions, share ideas, and optimize their unique experiences in a proactive and positive environment. The MSRWC is one of my first go-to resources for support, networking, and reinforcement,” says Kara Varner, Retired Army Spouse and owner of A Platinum Resume, LLC.
Sophia Marshall, Navy spouse and owner of MeSheet, LLC, agrees, “It’s great to be able to connect and discuss business operations with a group of like-minded professionals.”
Connecting organizations and employers to military spouses and veterans is another aspect of the MSRWC. According to Schofield, “each member of the MSRWC works with military spouses and veterans all of the time. So, when a company wants to hire a military spouse or a veteran, the MSRWC can instantly connect them to a highly-accomplished talent pool.”
Brassfield concurs, “the MSRWC offers an incredibly powerful resource for local and national military community organizations to tap into. With the current emphasis on military spouse and veteran employment programs, there is no more qualified group of individuals to provide expertise on resume writing and social media profile development for the job search.”
Dodie Thompson, owner of Peak Resumes, LLC sums it up best, “I joined this group to learn from and support some amazing folks who are dedicated to helping others succeed. As military spouses, we can be force multipliers for each other and for our clients.”
Would you like to work with or learn more about the MSRWC? Please like the MSRWC’s Facebook page at www.Facebook.com/MilitarySpouseResumeWritersCoalition.
Below are bios and contact information for some MSRWC members:
Melanie Brassfield, MA, ACRW: As a published resume expert with more than seven years of experience in career coaching, employment workshop facilitation, and resume writing, Brassfield has given thousands of clients a competitive advantage in the job market. She has worked with clients at all levels and in a wide variety of fields, including Executive, Management, Professional, Technical, Engineering, Medical, and Education. An Air Force veteran of 14 years, she specializes in working with the military community and gains great joy from watching clients successfully transition to government positions and the private sector. As a writer, Brassfield appreciates that no two clients are the same and is committed to ensuring that no two resumes are either. Passionate about quality, she works personally with each and every client, developing documents and social media profiles that present their unique career story and personality in a compelling way. Based in Hawaii, Brassfield is a member of the Professional Association of Resume Writers and Career Coaches (PARW/CC) and Career Directors International (CDI). Brassfield can be reached at www.careerwordsmith.com.
Sophia Marshall, MHR, ACRW: Marshall is the founder and owner of MeSheet®, a resume writing services company. Her work has been published in Modernize Your Resume. Learn more about federal, public, and private industry resume writing services at www.mesheet.com.
Amy Schofield, ACRW: Schofield Strategies®, LLC, founded by Schofield in 2011, offers resume development and job search strategies to job seekers of various backgrounds and experience levels from around the world. Most of Schofield’s resume clients are military spouses and transitioning veterans. In addition to working one-on-one with resume clients, she also works with organizations across the country by providing employment-readiness consulting and developing effective products and tools to help their customers, such as resume samples, job search content, checklists, tutorials, and toolkits. Schofield Strategies, LLC was the recipient of the 2013 Military Family Member Community Heartbeat Award. Schofield holds an Academy Certified Resume Writer credential and currently serves as the Resume Expert for the National Military Spouse Network. Schofield can be reached at www.schofieldstrategies.com.
Dodie Thompson, CPRW: Since 2003, when Thompson started as a Career Counselor for the Army Career and Alumni Program (ACAP), she has worked with clients in a broad range of industries including human resources, administrative support, law enforcement and security, marketing, public relations, logistics, transportation, maintenance, manufacturing, banking, financial services, sales, accounting and auditing, consulting services, education, hospitality, real estate, construction, and the arts. In 2004, she earned the Certified Professional Résumé Writer credential and completed the Certified Employment Interview Professional credential in 2005. Thompson has helped her clients succeed by creating more than 1,200 custom résumés, cover letters, and LinkedIn profiles. Thompson can be reached at https://www.peakresumes.com/home.html.
Kara Varner, MAOM, CPRW: Varner is President/CEO of A Platinum Resume, LLC. She holds a M.A. Degree in Organizational Management and is a Certified Professional Resume Writer, Veteran Career Transition Specialist, Author, and Workshop Facilitator. Kara is a member of the NRWA, CDI, CTL, MSBA, and BBB. Varner can be reached at APlatinumResume@yahoo.com.
Additional members include: Michelle Aikman of Skilled Assests, Cachet Prescott of Career Cachet, Christine Brugman of Resumes Right Away, Jessica Hernandez of Great Resumes Fast, Jill Casey of Military Career Coach, and Kendra Thomas of Southern New Hampshire University.