Should You Place Your Photo On Your Resume?

Inspired by one of the comments by one of the readers here on hiring discrimination, I’ll like to throw the question out there “Would you place your photo on your resume?”. I know I won’t.

In fact, I know for sure that the HR and the hiring manager will search online for any social media profile, whether it is the professional LinkedIn or the personal Facebook. Before MiddleMe’s birth, you won’t find a photo of me floating around the internet. (Read: My first article) Even now, you will only find a few carefully selected photos that are being used on my website and social media.


Simple. First impression counts big time. And it lasts the longest too.


If you really need to put your photo on your resume, please (for everybody’s sakes) do it properly. I’ve seen a lot of resumes in my management career. Enough to pile up and fill up a bedroom (I’m serious!)

First Up: A True Hiring Manager’s Point Of View

I have seen really good photos and really horrible ones on resumes. Some of them are laughable and make you think twice about hiring them even before you go through their credentials.

Drunken profile photos – Check!

Facebook profile photos – Check!

Cut off profile photos – Check!

Yes, even a profile photo of a lady in bikini applying to be a manager…. that’s a story for another time altogether.

Here are tips and tricks on how to have a professional looking photo on your resume without spending a bomb hiring a professional photographer to take a photo of you.


No Photos That Your Mother Won’t Approve Of

Don’t put drunken photos or you holding up a beer can in your photo or you bare chested/ bikini/ tube top. If the recruitment team happens to come across one on your Facebook page when they do a background check, fine. If and when we conduct a background check on a candidate, that means you are already in the running for the last round of interview or we are only one step away from hiring you. But never put that on your resume.

LinkedIn Photo Counts Too

LinkedIn is well known as a professional playground for job sourcing and networking in the same industry hence it will just come across as unprofessional if you upload a personal photo. Don’t blame us for thinking that you do not take yourself seriously if you don’t take your career profile seriously.

No Blurry Ones

You may have taken your profile photo with an iPhone with shaky hands. Don’t submit a blurred photo even that is the last one you have. If the requirements are to have a photo on your resume, it means the hiring team wants to see your face clearly. By providing a blurred photo, it may represent that you will produce shoddy work as well. Shoddy resume equals the image of producing shoddy work.

Copy From The Experts

Look at some of the famous CEO out there and check out their profile photos from business times or serious publications. Mirror their poses and their outfits.

Black And White Photos Are The Safest

If you can’t take good colour selfies, try taking it black and white. Be sure to wear a top of the opposite colour from your skin to make sure your neck and head stands out and not whitewash from the photos. That will provide you with a good contrast. A good lighting will help you tremendously as well.

Don’t Have Distractions

Your photo background should stay within two colours. The lesser distractions the better. If you are taking photos on your office desk as a background, make sure it is clutter-free. You don’t want people to be distracted from your face which is the important feature here.


Wear A Prim And Proper Top

I love shirts. The collar framed your face perfectly and highlighting your jawline, making your face look slimmer and sharper. For ladies, a wide collar works too, lengthening your shoulders and showing a hint of your collar bone. Try to have minimal accessories as possible to avoid distractions to your eyes and smile.


Finally, smile and let the laughter sparkle through your eyes. Conjuring happy thoughts will bring up bubbly emotions that light up your face. Remember, you are not taking a passport photo!

PS… Touch ups are nice but don’t over photoshop your face! We are looking for an employee, not a dating candidate!

Do you have better tips when taking a selfie to use as a professional photo? Come and share with us your secret!

Can’t get enough of MiddleMe? You can find me sharing my thoughts here as well: 
Instagram @kallymiddleme
Twitter  (MiddleMe_net)
FaceBook (

Best things in life are meant to be shared, start spreading MiddleMe around, after all, sharing is caring.


7 Comments Add yours

  1. Patty says:

    Fantastic advice, dear Kally. People seem to forget, potential new bosses are on social media too.
    Sending you a big hug again, and of course also for your little diva 😉

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Kally says:

      Awww… big hugs to you and blessings to your family and your hubby too!

      Liked by 1 person

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