Ok, here we go: after stockpiling loads of career advice books and checking continuously on well-established job pages, you don’t cast a doubt on the quality of your own CV’s layout. Or its adjusted structure to the industry’s standards. At least that’s how I feel – if 20 job hunters tell me that they instantly trash CVs with other colors than shades of grey, black and white, then my beautiful emerald frames are the first thing I dismiss. That is how I am – I trust experts, because in the end they are the ones who judge my letters. Call me a slave of the system if you want. But so far, I must say that I’ve made good experiences with that decision; during a career fair an HR advisor (from, don’t laugh, the CV clinic!) recommended me to adjust this or that, and like a miracle, after I implemented his suggestions the interview invitations flew in. Go with the flow – at least in terms of application-preparations this worked out better for me, than experimenting with personalized layouts. On the other hand: I will never know if my older layout was crap or I just send it to the wrong people, really tricky question.
By hook or by crook: there are a few well-known rules that each industry has, regarding the structure of applications that they get, and it’s an open secret that the easier it is for them to classify your (amazing) CV, the more likely it is get an interview invitation.
Clinical support for your CV
But now Forbes magazine raises questions, and asks: Is it smart that we just accept the no-photo-policy, without even demanding scientific proof for the success of this rule? And are no-photo-CVs even in keeping with the times, while we anyways offer every possible information, including pictures of ourselves, on various Social Media platforms, not to mention Linkedin? Everyone in HR, who finds our CV interesting enough to check upon us on the web, will be able to get enough information through the professional’s platform Linkedin, picture included (because it does appear suspicious to NOT add a photo to your Linkedin profile! What do you have to hide, hu?).
The most important argument for not sending along also your picture together with the resume is, that without a photo there can not be any form of discrimination in terms of gender or ethnic background. But then, on the other hand one has to ask himself – if there is no problem for some institutions to get insights in my most private online conversations, in my whole digital self – will it even be the slightest obstacle for HR people to dig a bit in the web in order to get some basic knowledge about myself? To key in my name and wait for results? To look for me on Facebook or Linkedin? And the answer is no. It is not difficult at all, and surely, most of the personnel managers will do exactly that, to find out more about you, to see if it “clicks” when they find pictures of you, and to add a face to the list of achievements. Rob Ashgar, author of the Forbes magazine, compares the absurdity of the no-photo-rule with ignoring the digital age.
If someone really wants to find your face, they do it anyways! Speaking from his own experience he also adds, that he got better feedback on CVs with a photo, than without. Although he stresses that his suggestions are not of scientific value since they are personal and the sample would be too small, he recommends the reader to make the test themselves and and figure out what’s the appropriate way for them.
Ashgar also adds, that it is probably more discriminating to get no invitation at all with a CV with photo, than getting a “no” after the first interview round (this man’s got a point!).
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