Author: Yukadon

[Blog] How to Take the Best ID Photo for Your Resume

For most Japanese companies, ID photo are required for resumes to be submitted when taking recruitment exams.

Did you know that this ID photo is very important?

The photograph of the resume is the person’s first impression and the impression will not change for a long time until the interviewer actually meets himself/herself  at the interview.

So this time, I will introduce details about the tips of how to take a good ID photos.

  1.   Importance of ID photos on resume

“It’s just a photo.” You may think so. However, when I talked to a personnel officer at a major company, he said that the following resume with ID photo is hesitant to recruit no matter how good content is written.

・  Fast photos or self-made photos
・  Low resolution, Bad color, Dark photos
・  Dark expression, ill-looking

The common point is that they are submitting pictures with poor quality with very little effort. By submitting a resume with such a photograph, it is possible that the applicant will be evaluated as having a low degree of desire, as well as being evaluated that “This person must have a low degree of completion of work.”

So, how do you take pictures to give a good impression? Let’s explain step by step.

  1.   4 rules on ID photos you want to know

No matter how good a picture is, it will cause bad impression if you do not keep the rules. As a basic matter, let’s first check the four rules related to ID photos.

Size: Vertical rectangle of 4 centimeters by 3 centimeters horizontally

Generally, it is good to have a size of 36~40 mm in length and 24~30 mm in width, but most of ID photo pasting frame is made with 40 mm × 30 mm. The photo should include the top of your shoulders with some space above your head, so that your face is large in the center.

You: Recent photo, no hats, looking straight forward

According to the rule of resume, the picture should be taken within 3 months of the submitting date. However, this is just the minimum rule. In the meantime, if your hairstyle has changed, or the impression of your face has changed, such as gaining or losing weight, it is the iron rule to take photos again. It’s also an iron rule that your eyes are looking at the camera.

Background: Blue or White

Recent ID photos now allow you to choose your favorite colors such as pink and green for the background color. However, considering submitting it to a company, the traditional and orthodox blue (light blue) or white / gray is the best. Blue can improve facial appearance and can highlight your features. White is simple and clean, but there are disadvantages of assimilating with a white shirt so, it may be better to choose a light gray in the range that does not make a dark impression.

Quality: Desirable to take at a photo studio

You cannot shoot with low quality cell phones or cameras. A photography studio is recommended since they can set up a background of blue and shoot with a high-quality professional camera. Photographers can also produce your nicest smile or best posture, and some even do retouch or color correction. Some photo studios take 2 to 3 days to develop, but there are places that can develop immediately as well (about 10 to 30 minutes).

Photo booths for taking ID photos can be found in various places, such as government buildings, train stations, or near convenience stores. These print almost instantly.

If you have a suitable background available somewhere with adequate lighting, you can use a smartphone to take the photo. Make sure it looks professional, there are not too many shadows, and that the photo is cropped to the right size.

Now that you understand the basic rules, let’s take a look at points to improve your photo.

  1.   Giving a good impression

Let’s check the following 10 items to judge whether the photo is appropriate one or not.

  1.    Bangs are not hanging on eyes or eyebrows
  2.    Face the front
  3.    Pull chin in
  4.    Look straight ahead
  5.    Smile a little or not at all
  6.    The forehead and nose are not shiny
  7.    Right and left shoulders are even
  8.    Shirt and hair are tidy
  9.    Jacket or blouse collar is not hidden with hair
  10.    Spine is straight

Common to the photograph that gives a favorable impression is a feeling of cleanliness, an atmosphere expressing a sense of security for others.

  1.   Clothes for ID photo

Except for some industries such as apparel business and beauty industry, suits are basic for ID photos of workers. It might be easier to understand if you think that it is the same as when going to an interview.

For men: A white plain shirt with a black or navy jacket, less flashy tie would be nice. 

For women: A black or navy jacket is standard. A white blouse or a simple design dress, with a neckline that is not too low, is recommended. Do not attach accessories such as necklaces, and if you have long hair tie or brush it back.

To Conclude

For employers, ID photos on the resume are an important factor in deciding whether to accept candidates for an interview. Make a good first impression to potential employers with a good ID photo.


By Yukadon
社内翻訳、通訳経験後、2年前に独立。現在は、特許翻訳、法廷通訳者の傍ら、Webライターとしても活動中。

Read other blogs: https://talenthub.jp/blog/?lang=en

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