In recent studies, up to 90% of human resources, people say they check out social media profiles, especially LinkedIn and Facebook, before inviting a candidate in for an interview (careercast). Your professional photo is almost like your own logo.
All too often we see headshots that are too close, too far, too blurry, too sexy, too smug (often when someone is trying to look confident) or too happy (most likely a little tipsy). The wrong headshot can kill your chances of even getting a look into an interview.
If you’re considering looking for a new role, getting a good photo that you can share with your recruiter, use on your LinkedIn and include in your CV is paramount to your job hunting success.
Here are a few best practice tips to consider:
- Take the photo from your shoulders to the top of your head. People want to see your face.
- Keep your hair neat and away from your face
- It’s ok to smile! But not to a point where you are laughing. It can sometimes appear contrite
- Ensure the photo is taken at high resolution. Don’t undo your efforts by taking the pic in low quality.
- Take a few options. If you wear glasses, take a few photo’s with them on and off. Hair up and down, etc. You can then work with your recruiter to select the right photo.
- Ladies, keep your makeup natural. People want to see the real you.
- Men, cleanly shaven is often the best but if you have facial hair just ensure it has been manicured.
- Take the photo facing the light. Do not have the light shining on one side of your face. You don’t want to look like you’re from Phantom of the Opera.
- Take the photo on a plain background. You don’t want your surroundings to detract from your photo.
- For a well-balanced photo, try to adhere to the ‘rule of thirds’. This means placing the centre of the face or the eyes at the intersection of the lens.