Mystery Shopping Resume

This post may actually be more of a meta question about the website than the forum itself . .

I recently read a thread from a prospective MS who was asked for a resume. It surprised me to realize that in nine years I have never been asked for one and would not know what was expected. Don't get me wrong--I have written many resumes for both academic and commercial jobs, and my husband is a professional editor who teaches people to prepare resumes (and occasionally does it himself for a hefty fee). I know the basic principles of presenting oneself, but there are customs and conventions within a given field that do not necessarily translate to other fields. I was thinking that perhaps a "resources" section on the website might include basic instructions and a sample resume. (Unless there already is one and I have failed to find it).

The MSC had also requested an actual sample report (not merely narratives), and a few commenters mentioned that they kept those. I could probably figure out how to save one if given enough time, but I thought it also might be helpful to other shoppers to have some basic instructions for saving the completed forms.

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Resume styles change over time as well as for different types of work, so I would be somewhat hesitant to post a 'sample resume'. My resume 'began life' back in the 1960s and over the years has had eliminated things such as date of birth and things that an employer can no longer ask while having added the jobs since it was last sent out and 'career objectives' that match to the current job being applied for. My children were taught a different kind of resume presentation, so the look and feel of theirs' is quite different than mine. There are many guidelines for resumes on the internet so I seriously doubt that we need to provide one here.

As for 'sample reports', these need to be created from scratch by the shopper because a shop that has been provided for a company becomes their property and is protected by all confidentiality of the ICA. What is generally being sought is proof that the potential shopper can produce narrative that includes observations rather than opinions in a clear, descriptive manner. The paragraph(s) should be in standard English with proper spelling, grammar and punctuation. Back in the New Mystery Shopper section it is suggested that folks take the time to write up a few of these to save to their hard drive and paste into registrations as needed. My repertoire on these includes a write up to a restaurant that is not shopped (and indeed has gone out of business since I wrote it), but covers the hospitality, service, cleanliness and food quality items that most restaurant shops want. I have 'best shopping experience' and 'worst shopping experience' write ups as well where the 'best' includes a few negative observations and the 'worst' has a few positive observations. There is also a 'why I would make a good shopper' write up.
Again, I can write a great resume. My academic resume is 3-4 pages, depending on whether I include PR jobs as well as teaching and writing, and which types of writing expertise I want to highlight, as well as on format, font, etc. I just don't want to include a lot of information that a mystery shopping company does not want to bother with. I also don't want to obscure my mystery shopping experience. On the other hand, is it appropriate to list the MSCs one has worked for, or individual jobs without identifying the MSC? I have only been mystery shopping for 9 of my 64 years, so what will the company want to know about the previous 58? For academic jobs, they want to see every year accounted for or they assume you are trying to hide something. I'm sure there's a happy medium between my full resume and a sheet of paper that says "2008-2017, mystery shopping." Just guessing that if asked for a resume, there might well be a few shoppers out there who would be more lost than I would be.

As far as the copies of the reports themselves, in the discussion I participated in, there were definite references to physical copies of the report forms (redacted from specific information, of course). SteveSoCal, who I tend to trust in all matters, mentioned editing in Word and saving a PDF. Again, that doesn't sound too tough to me, but didn't know if it might be less familiar to others. I'm fine without help here, thank you very much :-). I was primarily trying to be helpful to others.
I figure that a resume for mystery shopping should include former experience that might be relevant to certain clients, though it is likely to be a 1 liner as opposed to a specific run down of duties that might apply to a job I was applying for. So yes, I will include my self-employed typing & editing business from the '60s and '70s as well as my clerical, accounting and tax work (both as self-employed and as employee), my teaching experience and my stock brokerage/financial planning background since that was what I retired from and free lance technical writing from a couple of years ago. My self-employed mystery shopping will be identified as such with dates that obviously overlap other employment and go to 'present'. There I will itemize the types of shops done somewhat generically and with no MSCs named so that they know I have done retail, financial, restaurants and multi day observations of upscale hotels and resorts.

SteveSoCal is also suggesting that you not provide a real shop as a 'sample shop' because he too is aware of the ICA violations that would entail. We know generically that every shop report has a day, date and time it is performed. It will involve evaluation of one or more persons as to professionalism in dress, approach, service and departure comments. Most reports prefer one or more direct quotes, etc. I have no intention of providing a form as a 'sample shop', even if I create it from scratch or alter a real form enough to avoid copyright infringement. I certainly have never had a company come back and complain that a comprehensive narrative was not a 'sample shop' and the only companies I have never heard back from were ones I subsequently have discovered were out of business. I have had companies respond that they have nothing in my area but will keep my application on file in case something should come up.
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