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I'm currently a student attending an American top 50 university and I work at a mid-large sized financial consulting firm. The firm bills me out to clients at $75 an hour and I've done hundreds of hours of billable work over the year I've worked there.

Since I'm applying to entry level jobs out of college I have been including my billing rate on my resume, the exact line is:

•Performed hundreds of hours of billable work for a variety of clients including regulatory agencies, investment funds, and private individuals at a billing rate of $75/hour.

I recently received criticism about that and was told that I should take it off my Resume. Is this some type of a faux pas? I feel that showing I have already been valued at such a high billing rate (for my experience) is a positive and demonstrates that I can do billable work. Should I remove this line from my Resume?

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    No. It's bragging. Same as you are doing here. – HireThisMarine Oct 18 '16 at 23:20
  • What is the point of a resume other than to brag and showcase your skills and responsibilities? – TheSaint321 Oct 18 '16 at 23:21
  • I'm graduating college next year, but entry level generally pays 55-70k per year. The current position I'm in is part time and is paid $20/hr if it matters. (I don't include my current wage on my resume). – TheSaint321 Oct 18 '16 at 23:26
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    This doesn't convey much information but the information it does convey is not what you would expect. Contrary to what you believe, this hourly rate is actually cheap for management consulting (and change for strategy consulting). This tells either of two things 1) you were working for a body shop or 2) your firm is either low tier / you are valued very little. None of those options is favorable to you. To give you a feel for the numbers, you are billed roughly 2/3 of what we charge for a junior analyst. – ApplePie Oct 19 '16 at 2:25
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This comes across as having a swelled head and has no bearing on a job application. What is billed to the clients is company specific and may have nothing to do with you or your skillset. A company can bill $75 an hour for someone to mow a lawn if they want.

  • You can make a paper route be billable for over $100/hr. If they pay you $50 and you do it in 30 minutes, that's $100/hr. – Nelson Oct 19 '16 at 1:38
  • Appreciate the feedback. I will be removing the billing rate from my resume. – TheSaint321 Oct 19 '16 at 17:05
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No. Not relevant. They don't care what you charged, they care what you did.

  • This isn't what I charged but rather the rate at which I was billed out to by clients. I also include more concrete information about what functions I performed at my job, but I feel that showing I was billed out to clients at a high rate while still in college lends credibility to my ability as a worker despite my age and inexperience. – TheSaint321 Oct 18 '16 at 23:18
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    I stand by my answet. How much your employer got away with charging is not as meaningful as what you did that the customers were paying for. – keshlam Oct 18 '16 at 23:21
  • It says more about how much you think of your worth than anything. If I see a resume with that line the chances of you getting an interview go way down. You're coming across as someone that's pretty full of himself. – Chris E Oct 19 '16 at 0:53
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Communication is about what people perceive

I recently received criticism about that and was told that I should take it off my Resume.

... I feel that showing I have already been valued at such a high billing rate (for my experience) is a positive and demonstrates that I can do billable work.

You're already having problems taking in what people are telling you. If one person went out of their way to tell you this, you can bet 10-20 people already thought of this and didn't bother telling you. This is echoed by the feedback provided so far and you have yet to absorb any of this.

You are either surrounded by complete idiots (unlikely), we're also all complete idiots (nope), or you don't respect the people giving you the feedback. Find someone you respect and ask them, then do what they tell you (this should have happened already).

Defending yourself isn't going to help you, others will not bother fighting you (why bother? It's your loss), and you'll be for the worse.

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Take a deep breath, this isn't going to feel good.

Sorry, but $75/hour is not a lot. At 40 hours a week it's roughly $150k a year. Take out the taxes and overhead, and you're not pulling your weight as a billable consultant. In the real world, you'd be let go.

Around here, a paralegal in a divorce firm books at least $80/hour. They have specialized skills, but not necessarily a degree from a high-end school.

Your resume is bragging about a billing rate that isn't as impressive as it sounds at first. Lose it. You can say you were billed as a regular consultant, and that will convey what you want it to, without undercutting your message.

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What you want to demonstrate is that you did billable work. What this means to me is several different things:

  • You were a freelancer and you charged a rate per hour of work.
  • You were a contractor and you billed a company your time at a rate per hour of work.
  • You were subcontracted and you charged a rate per hour of work.

Instead of indicating how much you charged per hour, you should look to clarify what those specific things you did were. It really doesn't matter if you charged $75/hr for work and only did one hour of work, but it would matter if your efforts helped markedly improve the efficiency and clarity of a company process.

You want to showcase your abilities here, not how much you believe your time costs. If a company wants to bring you on, you can start talking about salary (and you'd be quite blessed if a full-time company would voluntarily pay a fresh college graduate $150K/yr).

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