The NCRW is an earned certification. Be prepared to put a lot of time and energy into the process. Welcome constructive criticism. The certification committee designed the process to educate you and make you a better writer.”

Michelle Aikman, NCRW

Perfection is our goal. Excellence will be tolerated.


The NRWA's certification standards were developed by the Certification Commission. The exam process is comprehensive and covers various aspects of resume writing, cover letter composition, proofreading, and electronic resume preparation.

Don't Wait Another Year!

Seize this opportunity to enhance your career and promote your credibility as a Nationally Certified Resume Writer (NCRW).

Are You a Candidate for the Nationally Certified Resume Writer Certification?

Professionals from many backgrounds earn this credential:

  • Independent resume writers
  • Career coaches
  • College placement office counselors
  • Military transition staff
  • Outplacement staff

Establish Your Credibility in the Industry

Become a Nationally Certified Resume Writer and take charge of your career, grow your business, and solidify your reputation.

Preparing for and passing the NCRW certification exam associates you with The NRWA’s standards of resume excellence, which reflect sales-focused, relevant, succinct career search documents that are quality oriented and visually appealing.

We Make Preparing Easy!

To make preparing for the exam as easy as possible, you can download and study the NCRW Certification Study Guide from the Members’ Portal (member login required) to complement your previous resume training. This comprehensive Study Guide:

  • Presents strong resume writing concepts and strategies that will assist you in honing your skills as a resume writer.
  • Is comprehensive and covers various aspects of resume writing, cover letter composition, proofreading, and electronic resume preparation.
  • Includes a checklist, to help you proof your work and understand the concepts presented in the NCRW Certification Study Guide.

The education earned in studying for this exam is, in itself, a valuable asset to your career.

How Do You Earn the NCRW Credential?

Joining The NRWA is your first step. Once you are a member, you may submit a sample resume and cover letter to the Certification Commission for review. Start documenting your 10 Continuing Education units (CEs). CEs expire after three years. When you are ready, and after reviewing the feedback from the Certification Commission, you may take the two-part exam. Professionals who are considering beginning the certification process are strongly encouraged to have a minimum of two years’ experience in resume writing, although no amount of experience is required to submit your sample and receive feedback. Click here to learn more about the certification process.

How Do You Maintain the NCRW Designation?

Once you have achieved the NCRW status, your designation is valid for three years. To retain your certification, you must maintain continuous membership in The NRWA and earn at least 15 CEs between three-year renewals.

The NCRW Certification Commission is made up of volunteers who are committed to promoting the highest standards of resume excellence. Combined, they bring more than 100 years of resume writing experience to the NCRW program.

Advisory Board:

Kimberly Isaacs, NCRW since 1997 

Pat Kendall, NCRW since 1997

Judy Friedler, NCRW since 1998

Michelle Dumas, NCRW since 1999

Kimberly Schneiderman, Certification Chair


Sally McIntosh, NCRW since 1997

Norine Dagliano, NCRW since 2006

Cheryl Minnick, NCRW since 2010

Michelle Swanson, NCRW since 2012

Kimberly Isaacs, NCRW since 1997

The National Resume Writers' Association ©  5113 Monona Drive - Madison, WI 53716

(877) 843-6792 or (480) 382-2178

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