Dressing the Part: What to Wear to Your Job Interview

people having a meeting

Making a good first impression at your job interview is easier said than done. There are a lot of factors at play; from how you introduce yourself to how you answer their questions. There’s also the ‘looks’ element of it. When you enter the room, the interviewer will likely give you a once over to see if you fit their idea of what an employee of theirs looks like.  If your outfit doesn’t meet their standards, you might just miss out on a job opportunity.

Dress for the job you want to impress your future employers. Find out how to pick out an outfit for your next interview.

Know the Dress Code

Dress codes are different for every company. These are often based on their industry and the specificities of their job. A bank, for example, will likely have their employees dress more formally than those working in a tech start-up. Know the dress code of the company you’re interviewing for before picking out an outfit.

Corporate Dress Code

When the company is leaning towards a more corporate setting, they will expect you in more formal corporate clothing. For men, this often means a well-pressed suit with a neat tie. Choose a solid colour, like navy or dark grey, and match your tie to it. For women, corporate clothing often comes in the form of a pantsuit or a blouse and skirt combo. Much like for men, choose solid colours and complete your outfit with tasteful jewellery.

Casual Dress Code

Casual dress codes can be split into two categories: business casual and start-up casual. Knowing the differences between the two will keep you from wearing something inappropriate to your job interview.

Business Casual

Business casual combines corporate clothing with casual accessories. Rather than a suit and tie or pantsuit, this dress code opts for something less formal. For men, this means neatly pressed khaki pants, a button-down shirt and a sports jacket or knit cardigan. For women, business casual is marked by cotton pants or a pencil skirt and a linen blouse or a professional dress.

Man managing business

Start-up Casual

Start-ups are less worried about what you wear and more concerned with what you have to offer the business. But this doesn’t give you an excuse to look sloppy at your interview. Although you can wear jeans for this dress code, you should dress it up with a nice shirt and a tailored jacket.

No Dress Code

Modern company culture is more flexible when it comes to their dress code. If you find yourself preparing for an interview at one of these companies, consider these styling tips.

  • Dress up a bit even though they don’t have a dress code. Go for a business casual look so you don’t look out of place in their office.
  • Make sure everything is clean and well-pressed.
  • Don’t go overboard with the accessories. Select one or two simple accessories to personalise your outfit.
  • Select an outfit that makes you feel confident. Job interviews can be intimidating; when you feel confident in what you’re wearing, it shows in your demeanour.

Remember, preparation is the key to making a good and lasting first impression on your job interview.

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