Someone’s carried out a brutally honest study and we don’t think it’s going to go down well.

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22 Jan Someone’s carried out a brutally honest study and we don’t think it’s going to go down well.

Scientists have found that the attractiveness of your Facebook profile photo can increase your chances of securing a job interview by up to 40%.

Researchers at Belgium’s Ghent University have carried out a study to prove there is a correlation between the attractiveness of a person’s Facebook profile photo and the likelihood of that person getting an interview.

When filling a position, it’s common knowledge that employers are keen to get their hands on any information possible. Stalking potential candidates on Social Media platforms is the obvious go-to. It’s easy, full of private details, and they get to put a face to a CV.

As part of their research, the team at Ghent University responded to genuine vacancies with bogus applications letters. For each job advert, a pair of male graduates with degrees in commerce, business administration, or applied economics were constructed.

The applications differed in detail, but were similar in levels of experience, productivity and education. The only significant difference was the candidate’s name.

Fictional Facebook accounts were also set up, and the profile photos were made accessible to the public. 195 independent reviewers ranked the photographs beforehand for attractiveness.

Professor Stijn Baert found that the profile photo’s played a huge part in the application process. He said:

The candidate with the most favourable Facebook profile photo received approximately 21 per cent more positive responses to his application in comparison to the candidate with the least favourable profile picture.

“The difference in the chance to be immediately invited to a job interview amounted to almost 40 per cent.

The results also show that highly educated applicants are more likely to be searched for on Facebook and other social media platforms than the less educated.

We can’t say we’re surprised, but we do think it’s unfair to assume that a person’s Facebook profile photo can provide an honest and accurate description of their work ethic, personality and intelligence.

It might be time to take down that photo of your former booze fueled University life and replace it with a black and white LinkedIn head-shot. Yawn.