Your clothing can tell people a lot about you, so it makes sense that what you wear to a job interview can affect your chances of getting the job.
If you have an interview coming up, or you’re hoping to get an interview in the future, these eight tips will help you find the perfect outfit to give you the best shot at employment!
Understand expectations: It’s important to understand what your prospective employers think is appropriate interview wear. For instance, it’s typical for IT professionals to not wear a suit to an interview, but an accountant would almost always dress in a suit, while someone in the fashion industry would expect a job seeker to have fashion flair.
Use your network: If possible, speak to people you know and trust who work in a particular industry, or for the employer you are interviewing for. You can use their insider knowledge to find out what the preferred dress standards for interviews are.
Check Glassdoor.com: Glassdoor.com is a site filled with comments from people who have interviewed at different companies. These comments include references to the dress code.
Check with HR and visit company websites: Consider reaching out to the company’s HR department to ask about interview dress guidelines. You can also visit the company’s websites and see if there are pictures, especially in news articles, of what people wear to work.
Too formal is better than too casual: If your research turns up nothing, a general rule of thumb is that it is better to dress more formal than casual.
Choose your colours carefully: according to research, employers prefer conservative colours like blue, gray and black, while the colour orange is often viewed as unprofessional.
Don’t overlook the details: Even the smallest details can make a big impression, so once you’ve picked out your outfit, try everything on to make sure it fits well. Make sure your clothes are cleaned and ironed the day before your interview. It is also advisable to clean your shoes and make sure you have matching socks.
Avoid revealing too much: It’s best to avoid revealing outfits. For women, it’s best to steer away from low cut blouses or short skirts, and for men, avoid anything that’s too tight or reveals a lot of skin (including shorts or sandals). You may also want to cover up any visible tattoos or piercings, because although body art has gained wider social acceptance in recent years, a neutral appearance is still your best bet for most jobs.
Interviews can be nerve-racking, but dressing for the part can help you to feel more confident, secure and able to put your best self forward. Spending an hour or two researching and organising your outfit can really make a big difference to not only how you feel going in, but how your potential employer views you. Read more on how to dress to impress here.