LinkedIn is so widely used that it has essentially become necessary to join if you want to connect with IT recruiting companies and search for new IT jobs. If you’re not on LinkedIn, it will be much harder for IT staffing companies and potential employers to find you. (It also might suggest you don’t really embrace technology, which would obviously be a problem for IT professionals.) While there are plenty of LinkedIn tips for creating your profile, it’s also important to make sure your LinkedIn picture is done well. Here are some tips to taking a LinkedIn profile picture that will attract IT recruiters and potential employers.
Make sure the picture is clearly of you. IT staffing firms suggest you avoid using pictures of you and your family, friends, etc. Just use a picture that shows you. Your LinkedIn profile is meant to showcase your professional achievements and experience. Social pictures with your family or friends aren’t really relevant to this goal. Technical recruiters find that these kinds of pictures may even detract from the professionalism of your profile to certain, more conservative, employers.
Pick a picture where you’re dressed professionally. You don’t have to be in a full suit, but take a picture where you’re at least dressed in business casual clothing. Even if your goal is to work in a start-up environment where people wear a t-shirt and jeans to work, use a picture of you wearing at least business casual clothing. Think of a LinkedIn picture as similar to how you present yourself at a job interview. Your IT recruiting firms will always tell you to go to a job interview wearing at least business casual clothing, if not a suit. You should do the same in your LinkedIn profile picture.
Pay attention to what kind of picture it is. Don’t use an artsy shot or a full body shot. Aim for something that’s closer to a headshot. Again, think of your LinkedIn picture as similar to the impression you give in a job interview. Taking a picture from far away, at an odd angle, or with a special filter doesn’t help you present yourself in a straight-forward, professional way.