What Your Resume Is up Against, Business Plan Example
Words: 3859Business Plan
Starting a new business can be a daunting task and is a process that hinges on many aspects for working toward success. One of the most important aspects of starting a new business is the development of a business plan. Additionally, the business plan must be effective in helping a company set strategic goals and objectives to enable a path to business success. The U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) proposes that a business plan is a roadmap to a company’s success. It is used to make 3-5 projections about the business and its operations, which is used by the company and other interest parties (e.g., investors) to determine the best route to follow for growing revenues (SBA, n.d.). Simoneaux and Stroud (2011) call this the company’s GPS to get it from point A to B. Fernández-Guerrero, Revuelto-Taboada, & Simón-Moya (2012) assert that new businesses need business plans because they start-up process consists of many technical, legal, administrative, financial, and economic restrictions, rules and regulations. These factors will influence much of what goes into a business plan. Additionally, similar to the views of SBA and Simoneaux and Stroud, Fernández-Guerrero, Revuelto-Taboada, & Simón-Moya (2012) states that a business plan is “a map guides a traveler, a business plan must make it possible to determine in advance where we want to go to, where we are now and the necessary guidelines for achieving the stated goal” (p. 2403). An effective business plan also serves as means of communication that gives a company’s management team, workforce, stakeholders, vendors, and financial institutions the ability to understand the company’s goals and objectives.
Following is a business plan for Resume Writing Services, Inc., which includes an executive summary, company description, services description, market analysis, business strategy, organization & management structure, and 3-year financial projections.
Resume Writing Services, Inc. is a new business start-up that provides professional resume writing and consulting services. The company’s founder is _______________. The company operates as a Limited Liability Corporation and has two employees, including the founder, ______________________. Resume Writing Services, Inc. will offer its services to anyone who is interested in having their resume edited or written from scratch, and this includes administrative consulting services. Clients will be served both offline and online.
Target marketing is an effective tool for companies to use when planning on focusing on a specific niche in a market. This is a way for a company’s management to recognize how diverse its potential and existing customer base is, which means each customer is unique and will require specified assistance when using the company’s services (Fernández-Guerrero, Revuelto-Taboada, & Simón-Moya, 2012).
Resume Writing Services, Inc. plans to target various segments of the market to include students, graduates, blue collar professionals, and white collar professionals. Today’s business market is extremely competitive, which means that for any one job opening there could be hundreds of resumes submitted to it. Forbes states that a recent research study found that job recruiters spend no more than 6.25 seconds skimming over a job candidate’s resume before making a decision about whether or not the candidate is a good fit for the job (Adams, 2012). This is one good reason why professional resume writing services are a valuable resource for potential job seekers (i.e., students), job seekers just starting out (i.e., graduates), and those who are already in the workforce looking to change careers or move on or up to something more preferred (blue and white collar professionals).
Services offered by Resume Writing Services, Inc. are identified in this section as well as a featured overview of the company’s processes. The company’s services aim to benefit all types of clients who are willing to purchases resume writing and consulting services. Even though the services offered by Resume Writing Services are not totally unique, they are competitive because clients can take advantage of services with the lowest prices and of the highest quality. Additionally, the company offers fast delivery and 24-hour customer service. Part of Resume Writing Services, Inc.’s strategy is to position itself as a leader in the market by establishing a reputable image with both prospective and existing clients.
Resume Writing Services, Inc. will offer total package resume writing and consulting services. This includes consulting with clients on their backgrounds and their visions on what they want their careers or next job move to be like and offering suggestions, professional proofing and editing of existing resumes, professional resume writing from scratch, resume printing on paper of the client’s choice, mailing out resumes via snail mail or electronically, and making updates. The cost of these services will range from $25 for simple resumes with little experience built into them up to $275 for more complex professional level resumes. Resumes at the higher cost spectrum will require more time to compose and design and will require specific keyword strategy than simpler resumes.
Liu (2013) state that competitive advantage is part of a company’s forward-thinking strategies and advocates for sustainable competitive advantage in an organization. Resume Writing Services, Inc. has a competitive advantage in this market because of its services are generally priced lower than other services, as determined by a market analysis, which will be included later in this business plan. Additionally, Resume Writing Services, Inc. will offer the added value services described above to all of its customers, regardless of cost level. The majority of VA services are secretarial in nature. They are jobs that an administrative assistant can handle.
According to Berger (2013), forward-thinking companies focus on analyzing their businesses to identify their missions, rather than simply writing out a mission statement. Berger argues that companies should ask themselves pertinent mission questions to determine what the company stands for and what its aims are for achievement. Resume Writing Services, Inc. is on a mission to offer its clients the highest level of professional resume writing and consulting services available, as well as ease of garnering those services through its in-house location and with its professional online presence. Resume Writing Services, Inc. will offer these excellent services with a high level of professionalism, while giving all clients every reason to trust that their resumes will be top notch and competitive in today’s competitive business industry. Resume Writing Services, Inc. aims to exceed its client’s expectations.
Resume Writing Services, Inc. business objectives include: (1) generating at least $50,000 of income within the first three years; (2) developing enough profit to operate in the black after the first year; and (3) earning substantial word-of-mouth advertising from satisfied customer referrals to offset the cost of marketing and advertising expenses, within the first year.
Company Ownership and Start-up
Resume Writing Services, Inc. is owned by the founder, ___________________, and will operate as a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC). The owner, ______________________, will invest personal funds, funds from family and friends, and a $5,000 small business loan to start the business. These funds will cover the costs of start-up equipment and services for start-up operations and includes the following:
- Two computers and peripherals
- Laser printer
- Deskjet printer
- Fax machine
- Internet connection
- Computer software and apps
- Office supplies
- Office furniture (existing assets)
The following chart and table illustrates how Resume Writing Services, Inc.’s start-up costs will be distributed.
|Requirements for Start-up|
|Start-up Expenses Total||$6,900|
|Start-up Cash Required||$7,000|
|Start-up Assets Total||$8,800|
|Total Requirements for Start-up||$15,700|
|Required Start-up Funding|
|Expenses for Start-up Funding||$6,900|
|Assets for Start-up Funding||$15,700|
|Total Required Funding||$22,600|
|Start-up Cash Required||$7,000|
|Cash Balance at Start-up||$7,000|
|Liabilities and Capital|
|Investment from Founder||$7,000|
|Investment from Friends and Family||$10,000|
|Start-up Expenses (Loss)||($6,900)|
|Capital and Liabilities Total||$15,100|
Resume Writing Services, Inc. will offer its clients a range of consultative and administrative resume writing services at its office location or online. These services will be available to individuals from all walks of life who are in need of professional resume writing services. The list below outlines a description of services offered by Resume Writing Services, Inc.
- Resume consultation
- Resume content advice
- Existing resume editing
- Resume writing from scratch
- Cover letter writing and editing
- College admissions letter and essay writing and editing
- Resume mail-out (snail mail or online)
- Mailing services
- Resume copying, scanning and faxing
- Edits and updates
Resume Writing Services, Inc. is equipped, prepared, and experienced to deliver the services required and needed by its clients. The client will have the opportunity to trust Resume Writing Services, Inc. with their complete resume project and know that it will be completed and delivered accurately, on time and with the highest level of excellence and expertise. Additionally, clients may visit Resume Writing Services, Inc.’s website at RWSI.com, to place orders and to get resume writing tips and questions answered from the website blog or by submitting a question on the site.
Resume Writing Services, Inc. will offer added value to its clients through its services offered beyond simply finishing a resume. This justifies the cost of using the service, as the client saves time and energy from not having to write the resumes themselves, and they are save the burden of struggling to find the right content, structure, keywords, and format required for an effective resume. Clients benefit from having professionally written resumes, according to Adams (2012), as recruiters rank professionally written resumes 60% higher than amateur written resumes because they are better organized and easier to read. In addition, professional resume writers are experienced in making sure the pertinent keywords and phrases are included in the resumes they write, as many companies today use applicant tracking systems to scan resumes, according to an article in the Wall Street Journal (Weber, 2012). Possible future services offered, a concept suggested by Simoneaux and Stroud (2011), include administrative word processing services.
Resume Writing Services, Inc. plans to target the open job seeker market, to include targeting individuals such as students, graduates, blue collar workers, and white collar workers already in the workforce. Services will targeted to companies, individuals, and not for profit organizations. Market research indicates that job seekers of today have specific behavioral characteristics, and they are aware that they are looking for jobs in a very competitive market.
According to Career Builder (2012), potential job candidates use various available means to look for jobs. These include search engines (85%), job boards (69%), company career sites (83%), and traditional networking (75%). These are all channels that candidates can upload their resumes, which means that their resumes will be scanned by applicant tracking systems, as noted by Weber. Additionally, Career Builder reports that 77% of full-time employees already in the workforce are open to new job opportunities or are actively seeking new jobs, and 60% of job recruiters have open positions because of having difficulties finding qualified candidates. These statistics are proof of why it is important for job seekers to have effective resumes, of which they are more likely to have through using a professional resume service such as Resume Writing Services, Inc.
Resume Writing Services, Inc. has identified the market segments of the targets listed above. These segments of the market are made up of potential clients who tend to need resume writing services.
Students and Graduates
Students are a market segment that is on the verge of entering the workforce. They could be high school, college, technical school, or other students who plan to look for a job upon graduating. This segment is likely to be a part of those who use social media and other online channels to search for jobs. This segment is likely to have the best strategies for job seeking and may be more computer savvy and willing to use as many search resources as possible to get their resumes in front of potential employers. Therefore, they will likely appreciate the services of a professional resume service because they want to make the best impression on potential employers as possible, and they understand that their resumes will likely be scanned by applicant tracking software.
Blue and White Collar Workers
These workers are already in the workforce and may be unhappy at their current jobs or are just looking to expand, explore, or move up to bigger and better things. This is a segment that will likely need the services of a professional resume writing service because they are likely not to have the time to write, format, structure, proofread, and edit a quality resume themselves, as they are working full time.
Job Recruiter Perspectives
According to Career Building (2012), 53% of job recruiters stated that a candidate’s resume showing that the candidate lacks the necessary skills for the job is what knocks them out of consideration for the job, as illustrated below. This is due in part to the candidate’s resume not being written properly, which can be averted by using a professional resume writing service.
Resume Writing Services, Inc.’s target customers of students, graduates, blue collar workers, and white collar workers need to use professional resume services to enter into different levels of the business arena; however, needing the resume to be effective is all the same. In addition, all of the segments in the target market have busy lives and may lack time to put together an effective resume themselves. An effective resume is one that is well-written, well organized, and is free from spelling and grammatical errors (McKeever, 2014). Today’s candidates must be as efficient as possible and this applies to how they present their resumes to potential employers. As companies continue to become as efficient as possible, they are keeping their current employees as busy as possible; this is where a professional resume service comes into play.
Resume Writing Services, Inc.’s competitive advantage includes the expertise, experience, and skills of the staff, as well as the skill set for offering other professional administrative services, such as word processing, in the future. Resume Writing Services will use its competitive advantage as leverage for offering its services to its clients. This will make a significant difference in how clients see the company and should encourage good word-of-mouth advertising through client referrals. It is the intent of Resume Writing Services to keep all of its clients happy to ensure client referrals are ongoing. This will allow the company to decrease funds spent for advertising and marketing.
Until then, Resume Writing Services will use a targeted marketing strategy to raise awareness of the company as a top-rated resume writing services company. One way that Resume Writing Services will ensure this is by offering clients a discount membership that includes discounts on consulting and ongoing job search assistance in return for giving the company two referrals. Additionally, Resume Writing Services will offer all customers free revisions and a money-back guarantee if they are not satisfied for any reason.
As part of its marketing strategy, Resume Writing Services will also hire a webmaster to develop a professional, functional, and interactive website that will make it easy for clients to take advantage of the company’s services. The company’s website will be professional looking and user friendly, as the frontline impression of Resume Writing Services, Inc.
Advertising sources the company plans to use includes posting on the company’s social media sites such as Linkedin, Twitter, and Facebook, as this is free. In addition, the company will purchase limited advertising on these sources. The company will also use radio and print advertising to help get the word out about the company. The purpose of Resume Writing Services, Inc.’s advertising and marketing strategy is to promote the company’s visibility and to develop awareness of the company as a premier professional resume writing company.
The sales forecast for Resume Writing Services, Inc. has been put together to give an overview of sales for the first three years. This sales forecast will be used to help Resume Writing Services get predictions about its break-even point. This will be done by comparing its revenue to its expenses. The following sales forecast is on the conservative side, to give a realistic view of meeting sales goals, as shown with quantifiable data and graphic representations.
Organizational Management Summary
Identifying key personnel and the company’s management team is important for developing the company’s organizational structure, particularly for future growth, as there are only two employees at Resume Writing Services, Inc. at this time. The two employees are the founder, ________________, who serves the role of owner, CEO, and resume consultant and writer. The second employee is John Doe who is a professional writer with many years of experience writing resumes. The CEO is aware that more revenue could be generated by hiring additional employees; however, it has been decided that this will be done only after business picks up in the coming months.
3-Year Financial Projections
Resume Writing Services, Inc.’s 3-year financial projections section are done based on the market analysis and to set objectives. This will help the company better allocate resources efficiently. It contains historical financial data and prospective financial data that is related to the performance of the company. This will be helpful to the company for the purpose of future investors or loans. The data included are the company’s break-even analysis, income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statement for three years. The prospective financial information is usually what creditors want to see as well. These data include forecasted financial statements (SBA, n.d.).
Projected Profit and Loss
Resume Writing Services, Inc.’s projected profit and loss statement provides analysis of the company’s financial impact of its goals and objectives for three years out.
|Pro Forma Profit and Loss|
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Direct Cost of Sales||$500||$1,750||$2,700|
|Other Costs of Sales||$0||$0||$0|
|Total Cost of Sales||$500||$1,750||$2,700|
|Gross Margin %||98.00%||96.00%||95.00%|
|Sales and Marketing and Other Expenses||$1,000||$1,200||$1,500|
|Total Operating Expenses||$38,000||$52,200||$52,700|
Projected Cash Flow
|Pro Forma Cash Flow|
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Cash from Operations|
|Cash from Receivables||$20,000||$41,500||$57,000|
|Subtotal Cash Received||$20,000||$41,500||$57,000|
|Expenditures||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Expenditures from Operations|
|Subtotal Spent on Operations||$16,500||$20,800||$27,000|
|Subtotal Cash Spent||$16,500||$20,800||$27,000|
|Net Cash Flow||$4,500||$20,700||$30,000|
Projected Balance Sheet
|Pro Forma Balance Sheet|
|Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Total Current Assets||$17,000||$38,700||$51,000|
|Total Long-term Assets||$6,500||$7,000||$9,000|
|Liabilities and Capital||Year 1||Year 2||Year 3|
|Subtotal Current Liabilities||$15,000||$15,000||$20,000|
|Total Liabilities and Capital||$13,500||$32,700||$50,000|
The main purpose of writing a business plan is to give a company a way to define its business and how it plans to carry out that business over a period of time. This is necessary for a company to be able to clarify the direction of the business and gives management a blueprint on how to proceed when moving forward. Additionally, I have learned that an effective business plan can help a company see its future vision, as the business evolves and adapts over time. This is important to considering future company growth and direction and factoring those aspects into the company’s business plan. This is a strategic move that help a company make plans for change, particularly as it relates to the market, trends, and new innovations as the company grows. A business plan is also important for a company who may want to retain financing. According to SBA, the business plan gives information on the company’s potential to turn profits. Putting together facts, figures, statistics and details in a business plan, a new company can better attract potential investors to supply need start-up capital or working capital. In addition, a business plan is a way to gain team members, suppliers, and executives to the business when it expands. Finally, a business plan is a sure way of effectively managing a company, as it communicates the company’s organizational structure and helps management keep the business on track to meeting goals and objects, including milestones and sales targets.
A company’s business plan is always a work in progress, a living document that is never complete. It must be continuously worked on and kept alive by constant reviewing, monitoring and tweaking the plan periodically (at least yearly). Modifications must be made as needed. This is because changes occur in a business throughout a year, and this can relate to the business environment and events associated with it. The plan needs to be continually reviewed and strategies adjusted to determine impacts of changes on the company’s operations. Revised goals and objectives will also make a difference on how the business plan will change (Simoneaux & Stroud, 2011). SBA states that a successful business plan is one that identifies a niche. It is important that a company does not become a “jack of all trades” and stick to its own expertise in its own niche.
Resume Writing Services, Inc. does just that. The company is focused on offering expert resume writing services and other services in this realm, such as resume consulting and offering to edit existing resumes, along with the administrative tasks that go along with offering the service that the company offers as its value-added services, such as making copies and sending out resumes for clients. Additionally, Resume Writing Services, Inc. offers to assist its clients with their job searches, and looks to the future of offering other administrative services.
Adams, S. (2012, March 26). What Your Resume Is Up Against. Retrieved from Forbes: http://www.forbes.com/sites/susanadams/2012/03/26/what-your-resume-is-up-against/
Berger, W. (2013, December 30). Forget the Mission Statement. What’s Your Mission Question? Retrieved from Fast Company: http://www.fastcodesign.com/1672137/forget-the-mission-statement-whats-your-mission-question
CareerBuilder. (2012). 2012 Candidate Behavior Study: The Myth of the Passive Job Seeker. Career Builder.
Fernández-Guerrero, R., Revuelto-Taboada, L., & Simón-Moya, V. (2012, December). The business plan as a project: an evaluation of its predictive capability for business success. Service Industries Journal, 32(15), 2399-2420.
Liu, Y. (2013, May). Sustainable competitive advantage in turbulent business environments. International Journal of Production Research, 51(10), 2821-2841.
McKeever, M. P. (2014). Chapter 9: Editing and Finalizing Your Business Plan. How to Write a Business Plan, 199-214.
SBA. (n.d.). Create Your Business Plan. Retrieved from U.S. Small Business Administration: https://www.sba.gov/writing-business-plan
Simoneaux, S., & Stroud, C. (2011, Winter). A Business Plan: The GPS for Your Company. Journal of Pension Benefits: Issues in Administration, 18(2), 92-95.
Weber, L. (2012, January 24). Inundated Companies Resort to Software to Sift Job Applications for Right Skills. Retrieved from The Wall Street Journal: http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB10001424052970204624204577178941034941330
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