Fail safe organisation of your company headshots
Are you the person responsible for organising the company headshots? Whether you are in the marketing department or are an executive assistant, there is more to this than just hiring a photographer.
Firstly you have to determine your budget. It goes without saying that you will use a professional photographer who will charge you for their time, expertise and any necessary equipment. Plus travel expenses and retouching. This is usually given as one figure with the optional extra perhaps being the inclusion of an assistant. You want these photographs to look great and to last. But don’t spend your entire budget on one photoshoot as inevitably, not all staff will make the photoshoot day. And new staff join each year. Perhaps save a bit of budget for a shorter photoshoot day for the staff who were unavailable for the main shoot date.
Next have a think about timing. Good company headshot photographers get booked up weeks if not months in advance. So you want to make sure you are able to secure the right professional for the job. And it might be best to avoid school holidays, the Christmas and Easter periods and Summer if it is likely that your staff will be on leave.
Will you work with a creative agency? Some companies outsource the design of all company communications to a creative agency. The agency will come up with concepts of how the company headshots should look. It’s entirely up to you and depends on what internal resource you have as to whether you wish to do this. And what budget.
And once that’s sorted…
Decide on your location (this may also have some impact on the photographer you choose). Do you want to have the photoshoot on site in your offices (which is easier for a number of reasons). Or do you require it to happen offsite at the photographer’s studio? And if you choose to have the shoot in your office, think carefully about where that will happen. It’s a good idea to have a meeting on site with your photographer when planning you shoot. They will help you choose the best location and it will also allow them to judge the light and their equipment needs.
Find the right photographer. I’ve written another whole blog on this subject so click here to read this. Then you have to prepare a good photography brief. Be sure to include information of the type of background, the type of light (natural or artificial). And be sure to consider which if any group shots will be required. Having this sorted and briefed in advance will ensure things run smoothly on the day.
One thing to consider is how you will select the final image for each employee. It might be a good idea to get your photographer to run through the images and allow the sitter to choose after the sitting. Which can be much easier that sending the images out to each individual sitter afterwards. And having to chase them for their choices.
Finally, planning the shoot day. Using software such as doodle poll or similar to ping a schedule around for everyone to fill out is a great way to keep scheduling simple. And it will allow you to print out a schedule for your photographer so they have the correct sitter’s name in the correct order. It’s not a bad idea to get the photographer to send a little introductory paragraph to introduce them to the staff. And the photographer can perhaps share a few words of advice on shoot prep or how things will run on the day. Allow water and snacks for your photographer and don’t forget to schedule time for lunch and comfort breaks. It might also be a good idea to provide a mirror for the room where the shoot will take place.
Lastly, If the shoot in in the boardroom or C-Suite, then just be sure to book it out for the day. If however it is in the office where people will be passing please make sure that the area is marked off and kept as clear as possible to avoid distraction to the photographer and self consciousness for the sitter.