- Plenty of upload/download formats
- Pre-written phrases, sections
- No limitations regarding templates, fonts
- Quick resume checking option
- Free pricing plan included
- Astonishing support options
- Overcomplicated editor, dashboard
- Discouraging pricing plans
- Slow loading of documents
If you look around the cloud-based resume builder market you will see that most of the companies were founded around 2010. However, U.S.-based LiveCareer can already be considered an oldtimer as it has been with us since 2004. Compared to similar companies, LiveCareer’s builder software is slow, overcomplicated and uses an unclear pricing policy, but it still stays strong and has served over 9 million users worldwide. What is its secret?
For instance, you can upload and download unlimited (existing) resumes and cover letters in many formats, and the builder helps you out by letting you insert pre-written phrases into your documents, you get useful tips during writing, there are plenty of templates and fonts to choose from, and you get access to one of the most professional support services of the market that include a job search engine with job alerts and the clever Resume-Check. And unlike Resume Companion, an extremely similar competitor, you can use this software for free. If you are hungry for more, you can try it out for a symbolic, refundable price for 14 days.
Welcome to LiveCareer Resume Builder
The dashboard of LiveCareer is not very user-friendly – in fact, it gets confusing fast. First of all, creating and managing your resumes and cover letters only takes up approximately one third of the screen as the rest of it is occupied by ads for other extra services.
Regardless of the chosen pricing plan you can create, rename, duplicate or delete endless resumes and cover letters, and share them via social media, while the printing, downloading in PDF, MS Word, RTF, text and HTML format and sending options are the features for the paid plans only. Thankfully you can upload existing documents from your hard drive in every major document format – PDF, DOC, DOCX, ODT – or you can simply create a completely new resume/cover letter from scratch. Keep in mind though that each time you create or upload a document you have to wait until it fully loads which might take some valuable time.
When you edit your resume/cover letter you work on the actual document, but some features, like the spell-checker, adding and management of sections, the Resume-Check, choosing the template and formatting of the document have their own separate buttons scattered around the document. The same can be said about the cover letter editor, which has a design of software from the early 2000s. Thankfully your documents are auto saved each time, but you have the option to save modifications manually.
Aside from the regular resume builder you have two interesting features. The Resume-Check scans your resume, and by highlighting errors it gives tips on how to make it fail-proof. The second feature is the job search engine with a job alert which can send you an email notification of jobs similar to the ones you were searching for.
Unfortunately LiveCareer’s resume/cover letter creator is overcomplicated, especially for first time users, and it is virtually useless on mobile devices. The software only allows you to create your first resume after you have created an account and it even tricks you into believing you cannot use the software for free. LiveCareer is quite slow too: like we mentioned before, you can only start working after a long loading time.
The editor, however, is not bad. You are working on the actual document and each time you enter into a section you can get hints & tips and even pre-written phrases. You can add a total amount of 33 sections to your resume/letter, all of which can be renamed and arranged as you wish. Your templates and fonts can be selected on the right side of the screen, but you can also set other features like font size, margins, spacing and many more.
The software uses 20 different templates for both the resumes and the cover letters, but for some reason, they can be found under Designs. Furthermore, there is a Templates button, but it is for setting your resume to use the functional, chronological, or hybrid CV format. Furthermore, be careful when choosing an actual template, because you immediately switch to the selected template without a click once you moved the arrow thereon. Unfortunately none of the available templates/designs are photo CV templates, therefore you have to add your profile picture manually or leave the document as it is.
If you want to change the font you can do it by going to Formatting. Here you can modify your would-be document even more by setting the top, bottom, side margins, the spacing between lines, paragraphs and sections, and of course the size and face of the regular and heading fonts.
LiveCareer only shows the pricing plans once your first resume/cover letter are about to be created/downloaded. However, there are some differences. The most important is that you can use this software for free: you only need to register an account, ignore the notification telling you to subscribe and you will have access to unlimited resumes, cover letters, the customer support, hints & tips, useful advices and the job board with the job alert option. Unfortunately, to access essential features you have no choice but to subscribe to LiveCareer’s paid services.
The monthly subscription fee is $1.95 for the first 14 (trial) days then it increases to $19.95 per month. Another option is to choose the annual plan which is $95.40 a year ($7.95 a month) paid in one lump sum. The subscription allows you to download, print and email your resume, and use extra features like the Resume-Check. Thankfully you can cancel your subscription anytime and if you do so within the 14-day trial, you get a full refund.
The customer support of this resume builder is extremely versatile. Like every decent company, LiveCareer also has the regular support options like telephone, live chat assistance and an emailing module.
However, there are other free support options: you can read the writing tips or you can check out the many resume/cover letter samples written for employees of various sectors of the job market. You also have the option to fill out a career assessment test, calculate the salary of the desired job, get career tips, learn how to prepare and execute an interview, read the articles of LiveCareer’s blog and download a 16-page long eBook.
LiveCareer Game Plan Video Introduction
There are paid services as well: you can turn to a professional resume reviewer, who can evaluate your resume, or you can buy the services of a professional resume writer for quite a stiff price who will write your resume within 2–3 business days.
It is quite unbelievable that LiveCareer has been on the market for over a decade. Therefore you would expect that the company has the best online resume builder of the world. But we all know that nothing is perfect and it is especially true for LiveCareer. New clients might be discouraged by the overcomplicated dashboard and resume/cover letter editor, the lack of a decent mobile version, the slow loading of documents and the tricky pricing plans.
However, there are certain features in which LiveCareer still shines. You can use the software for free – albeit in a limited form -, you have plenty of templates, and you can insert pre-written phrases to your documents. You can import and download your resumes/cover letters in many formats, you can check your resume with the eyes of an HR, and there are countless support options ready to help you create the perfect CV.