How to Choose the Right Photo for Your CV

how to choose the right photo for your cv

When it comes to looking for a job, first impressions are important.

Although it is not always compulsory to include a photograph with your CV, a good professional image can help you stand out in the eyes of recruiters and give them a sense of your personality and overall presentation.

When you are asked to provide a photograph with your CV, there are a few factors you might want to take into consideration to ensure you present yourself in the best possible light.

The right CV photos should be:


  • Professional

    Some people choose to have professional headshots taken, which can be a good idea to ensure that they are composed and lit correctly. You should be appropriately attired for the job you are applying for (no bikinis or board shorts) and look clean and presentable.

  • Headshots rather than full length

    Most professional photographs are of the head and a bit of the shoulders, rather than the entire body.

  • Smile

    Smiling in your photo can make you look more confident and approachable and looking directly at the camera makes you appear more trustworthy than if you are looking down or away.

  • Taken in a suitable location

    Make sure the background is appropriate. Photographs which are obviously taken at the bar will not present a professional image. It’s generally a good idea to use photos with a plain or neutral background.

The same rules for CV photos apply for social media profiles, particularly on work-based platforms like LinkedIn. Many recruiters these days look up candidates’ social media profiles so make sure yours presents the right image!

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Jill Wells

Jill Wells is the Managing Director of WellsGray Recruitment with over 30 years experience in the recruitment industry. Since 1998, Jill has built the reputation of WellsGray as one of Victoria’s leading specialist providers of temporary, contract and permanent staff, having proudly established long-term relationships with its clients and candidates.

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