Should you add a photo to your CV? NO!!!! End of article…only kidding.
Seriously, though, should you add a photo to your CV? I am seeing an upsurge in photos on CVs, and (pulling an exasperated face) an increasing number of employers asking for one, which is very naughty indeed. The answer is still no, but let me give you a few reasons why.
Even if you are stunning and have the cheekbones of a super model, including a snapshot of your smiling face does not mean that you can do the job better than anyone else, and you could be opening the doors to discrimination. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder (of the pay cheque), so even if you are drop dead gorgeous, that in itself may put off a potential employer.
Many job roles at this time of year, particularly on the South Coast, ask for photographs to accompany applications for promotional or customer facing positions, such as bar staff, life guards, nightclub workers and vacancies in tourism. Why? Because they want to hire a good looking bunch of staff to pull in and keep the punters. This is wrong on a large scale.
But, it's not just about a symmetrical visage. What if the employer discriminates against you due to your age, race, colour or perceived nationality? Yes, yes, I know that they aren't allowed to – it's against the law – I know, I know, BUT it's not a peachy world out there and some employers WILL discriminate whether they are doing it consciously or subconsciously.
The Race Relations Act (1976) prohibits employers to discriminate on the grounds of race, colour or nationality and the Employment Equality (Age) Regulations Act (2006) was passed to prevent age discrimination in the recruitment process. Great! However, it still happens. Whether you can prove it or not, is an entirely different matter.
You should be recruited based on your ability to do the job, and not solely on what you look like.
Of course, there are exceptions to the rule, for example, a theatre director can stipulate the looks required for an audition of a character part, but this is an exception and largely, common sense.
So if you are asking yourself “Should you add a photo to your CV?”, then my answer is still a big, “No” and if an employer is asking to see what you look like or stating that you have to look a certain way as a prerequisite of the role, you may like to ask yourself if you would really want to work for such a person.
For more information on discrimination and an article I have written for All UK Jobsites on Questions An Interviewer Should Not Ask, click here.
To find out how to get the employer to like you as a person, read my blog post here.