What do I wear for an interview?
I've always wondered what is considered appropriate for an interview. I went with a short sleeve shirt to an interview, but I was then told that I had to wear a long sleeve.
Good question. Showing up for an interview can be stressful, and having to pick the right outfit is even more stressful. Despite the stress, I have learned a few things about how to properly dress for an interview from having interviewed for jobs at least 10 times.
For guys, suit and tie is the standard. It really depends on the job that you are applying for, but having a well fitted suit, nice tie, wrinkle free shirt, and shiny shoes is the standard that all guys should operate by when showing up to an interview. If you aren't working in an office or you are interviewing for a job that requires physical labor (i.e. farmer, fireman, forklift driver etc) then a suit/tie combination might me a little bit overkill. Guys, always remember to do your hair, shave, and brush your teeth; these little things make a huge difference when you are meeting your employer for the first time.
For girls (pardon my lack of familiarity as I am a man), a suit, nice dress, blouse+nice pants, and nice foot wear (think heels, nice flats, or wedges) are the standard. Every place has its own culture so you are going to have to judge for yourself what is the most appropriate to wear. Similar to the guys, little things go a long way so you likely do not want to show up with really messy hair. It is always better to play it safe and overdress than show up really under-dressed in tattered jeans and a T-shirt.
It's hard to say that you should "100% of the time wear X" as every employer has a different working culture and expectations. You will likely have to do some research and judge for yourself what is the proper attire to wear.
I hope this helps and I wish you the best of luck!!
In tech, especially US west-coast tech, showing up in a business suit is off-putting, and inappropriate. Showing up in a dirty hoodie and sandals with socks is probably equally poor form.
You can do a little recon to get an idea of what people wear in their day to day lives, to set your baseline: show up at a casual lunch spot in the neighborhood where you're applying for jobs, and look around. Find people who look professional, but not stuffy, and emulate them.
Your goal here is to dress in a way that is unsurprising, but pleasant. You don't want your fashion choices to be a part of the decision making process.
1. Match your clothes to the culture of the company - The most important thing to do is to pick up on the culture and vibe of where you are interviewing.
2. Dress nicer than normal - You will definitely want to dress a little bit nicer than the normal working day, but you don't wan to look so nice that you are out of place.
3. Pick a comfortable and confident outfit - You want to wear something that you are comfortable in and that won't be bugging you all day. For example, don't wear an itchy sweater (even if it's cute or looks nice) because it will distract you from the interview. If you're confident in your outfit, then it will show in small ways.
TL;DR: Blending in visually can help it look like you are already part of the team and fit in. I don't think it's something that people notice consciously, but it does make an impact.
The industry dress code to be followed for interviews is wearing the 'Business Professional aka Full Business aka Formal Business' attire. What it means is:
1) Clothes should be solid, dark or neutral colors
2) Light colors can be worn underneath
3) No stripes or bright colors or bright prints
4) The color of your suit/jacket (whichever you are using) should be the same as that of your pants/skirt (whichever you are using). This means that a black suit/jacket with black pants/skirt works.
5) Shoes should be closed-toe heel or dress shoes
P.S.: This dress code can be followed for career fairs, professional networking and presentation events, business meetings, formal celebratory occasions as well.
Hope this helps!!!
It is great to think ahead! I remember I applied for an externship and set up an interview for the next day; I was running around town trying to find something that worked!
I agree with a lot of the previous answers: knowing the culture of your potential employer is crucial. However, what I will say is it's always better to dress up than dress down in my experience. If you can't or don't feel comfortable asking a recruiter the dress code of the firm, going with a nice suit or blazer will always do the trick. First impressions are huge so don't wear an overwhelming perfume or an excessive amount of makeup that will draw away from you and your accomplishments.
All in all, confidence is the number one thing you need to bring to an interview. If you don't believe in yourself, why should an employer believe in you?
Hope that helps!
What you should wear to an interview varies quite a bit depending on your potential employer. It always good to ask the person / recruiter who contacted you to share the dress code for the environment. Some work places are more casual attire and others can be more polished requiring a suit and tie for example. I would focus on overall neatness, personal grooming, along with dressing for comfort are important regardless of what you're wearing. Don't assume what you should wear, take that extra step to find out and set yourself up for success ( first impressions make an impact ).
Clothes should be neat and clean, and appropriately cover private areas such as the chest, stomach, back, and upper thighs.
Always dress professionally regardless of an interviewer's dress code.
As a rule of thumb, professional services are smart, so a suit, or smart trousers/dress with a blazer. For companies that looks a bit more casual, maybe slacks and a shirt (preferable ironed) or a dress or Skirt and top. I wouldnt be too revealing or wear trainers. I would tend ot wear closed toe shoes and not flip flops or sandal's too.
Even for very relaxed companies I would avoid trainers and hoodies. But a smart pair of black jeans and an ironed, not wrinkly, top.
Check the weather, and take an umbrella if if might rain, sodden isnt a good look. but make sure you are comfortable, if you wear something that is itchy or too small etc you wont be comfortable and interviews are nerve-racking at the best of times!
Some basic ideas to start from:
- Less is more with accessories
- Your appearance should be the least interesting thing about you
- Good fit is more important than $$
Hope that helps!
What you wear to attend an interview highly depends on what type of job roles are you applying for.
For more traditional industries with stricter dress code,
for instance banking, finance, law etc, interviewers expect to see candidates wearing office attires.
Long sleeve shirts, suit jacket, minimal accessories and more subtle color tones.
However for newer industries such as tech, marketing, creatives etc,
you can dress in your own style that best depicts your personality while also showing respect to the occasion.
The main goal is to show your interviewer that you respect him/her and
treasure the occasion to meet and express why you would be the best fit for the job.
Looking clean, tidy and organized is #1 priority no matter which industry you can applying into.
Always have tidied hair, minimal make up (no bright red lipsticks or smoky eyes),
clean fingernails; remove any chunky accessories or refrain from wearing loud earrings.
Wearing a watch is always a good idea to show appreciation of time and punctuality.
Hope the above helps.
This is a great question. You have gotten quite a bit of feedback, but I wanted to reinforce one point - it varies by business sectors and various companies. Some companies will tell you dress code requirements on their sites or in the job description. I would recommend that you dress on level above dress code. So if it is casual, then dress business casual. It is also safer to dress and appear more conservatively. Avoid showing too much skin (arms, legs, back), make sure that your hair and clothes are neat and clean, wear clothing that makes you feel confident about yourself.
Good luck with your interviews,
Unfortunately, I don't know the female equivalent, maybe someone can respond to my advice.
For me it depends completely in the type of job and also on the company where you applying for. I always investigate the company before the interview to understand if, as a men I have to wear with suit and tie or if jeans, a formal shirt and a suit is enought.
I case of woman, black pants and a formarl shirt always work. For me a dress is too much.
Hope my answer can be usefull for you.
Luis | Cisco TAC
Hello, Reminder, you never get a second chance to make a first impression. Recommend the following for Interview dress
•No sleeveless shirts - in my experience short sleeve is permissible but really base that on the weather, temperature; comfortable shoes may have to walk around workspace, meet other Interviewers in different parts of building
• Have your clothes pressed
• Clothes should be comfortable
• avoid too tight, too short
• If have belt loops, wear a belt
• Jewelry – Minimal
• No perfume or aftershave
• Comb your hair
Catherine recommends the following next steps:
Wear a smile :) and you are ready for the day!
Must Do: Whatever you wear and your body should be extremely clean. Don't look shabby.
Having said that what are you comfortable in? You will have to wear something that ultimately gives you the confidence during an interview.
And is your prospective employer okay with the attire you choose to wear? You can find out the answer to these two questions by doing some research on the company or talking to the recruiter who has set up the meeting.
Now sometimes such interviews are held at coffee shops or over lunch and these days over zoom calls.
You should always try to dress for the job that you want. Not the job you have. It is never a bad idea to be over dressed but it can absolutely be a turn off for interviewers if you show up underdressed. It can give off a vibe of unprofessionalism or can say that you aren't taking the interview seriously.
<span style="color: rgba(0, 0, 0, 0.87);">In many traditional industries, like finance or account, business professional dress will be appropriate. For example, a conservative suit, shirt and tie if you're a man, or a conservative suit if you're a woman. I always find it helpful to try and match the clothing that the employees of the company wear :)</span>
What you should wear to an interview varies quite a bit depending on your potential employer and your industry. Focusing on overall neatness (no wrinkles, lints, stains), personal grooming, and dressing for comfort are important regardless of what you're wearing.
While you may feel embarrassed to ask (you shouldn't - it's always best to avoid assumptions), you can ask the person who contacted to you arrange the interview. Some companies even volunteer this information to job candidates in advance of their interview.
If the job you are interviewing for is not specifically management or a corporate position, then pants, shirt/sports jacket may be appropriate. Just make sure everything is clean, including your shoes. Remember, you want to put your best foot forward.
You should be mindful of your personal hygiene such as combing your hair, brushing teeth, too much make-up, etc. This sounds obvious but as a hiring manager I have seen a lot of people either overthink or forget the little things. If you are a guy wearing a suit, wear dress socks...not athletic socks or ankle socks so your legs show when you sit down. Polish your shoes, wear deodorant and coordinate your outfit as best as you can. You want to show that you put thought and care into your choice of apparel. That infers that you care about the opportunity. Iron your clothes before hand, do not show up with wrinkles. Attention to details matters! Girls, be mindful of how much makeup you use and what jewelry you wear. Lots of bracelets that jangle when you move your arms can be distracting. Wear something appropriate...you are not going to the club. For both guys and girls, use half of whatever cologne or perfume you were planning on using. Typically interviews happen in small spaces and smells can be overpowering.
Aside from your physical appearance, take time to practice your non verbal actions. Are you fidgety, do you rattle the keys/change in your pocket, do you shake your leg when you are thinking or nervous, do you keep eye contact or look away, etc. Best way to watch for these is to do a mock interview and video record your body while you speak or have someone complete a mock interview and video record it so you can see what you do. While you are doing the mock interview audio record yourself separately to hear your verbal queues. Do you say "um" before you answer, do you say "like" in between every other word, do you speak at an appropriate volume, do you mumble, are you articulate, do you ramble or get off topic, etc?
Interviewing is like anything else...PRACTICE PRACTICE PRACTICE. You don't have to wait until you blow the interview to work on your interviewing skill set.
Other things to prepare are:
ARRIVE 15 MINUTES EARLY (I turn away any applicant that is late. If you can't be on time to an interview I have zero confidence you will be on time for your job) - If there is an emergency and you have to reschedule or will be late - CALL the interviewer and make them understand how important this interview is for you and that you will make yourself available to meet whenever.
Work on your resume (look at online templates, watch videos, take workshops, etc)
Keep your resume to 1 page (I prefer a concise, well formatted design that highlights your accomplishments and background. I don't need every data point)
Always bring multiple copies of your resume (even if you are only meeting with 1 person, prepare in case more people sit in on the interview)
Print your resume on card stock - (this goes back to your image and personal brand)
Practice giving answers in the SMART format
Think back on your experience or life about situations that were challenging and how you overcame them
Tailor your answers to be relevant to the job you are applying for
Learn about the company you are applying for. Do a quick google search and get some talking points (was there a recent product release, is there a new leadership team, etc)
Look up your interviewer on LinkedIn or Facebook (Information is your friend, any data points that you can reference to build common ground will help you)
While in the interview take a deep breath and relax as much as possible. This is your opportunity to show the real you and what you bring to the table. Don't be afraid to humble-brag. You don't want to come off as arrogant and you know better than everyone else but you need to be able to confidently talk about your accomplishments and ambitions. Smile, be upbeat and positive and realize that eventually the right opportunity will come along.
1. Professional / Business Interview Attire
Generally, a job interview calls for you to wear professional, or business, attire.
For men, this might mean a suit jacket and slacks with a shirt and tie or a sweater and button-down. For women, a blouse and dress pants or a statement dress is appropriate.
You can also incorporate some modern style trends into your outfit. All interviewees should consider color when selecting an interview outfit and avoid wearing anything too bright or flashy that will distract the hiring manager.
2. Interview Outfits for Women
The more important thing to consider when you're dressing for a job interview is that you should look professional and polished regardless of the type of position you're seeking.
Even though your interview attire depends on the role you're applying for, no matter what the position, you should go to the interview looking neat, tidy, and well-dressed. Here's how to make the best impression at every interview you go on.
3. Interview Outfits for Men
It can be challenging to put a professional interview outfit together. Here are some basic tips for men on how to dress for an interview, including what colors to wear, whether to wear a tie (and what kind), and more.
4. Non-Professional / Business Casual Interview Attire
If you have a job interview in a more informal work environment, you might wear a business casual outfit. Business casual outfits are less formal than a suit, but they are also more professional and polished than, say, a T-shirt and shorts or a sundress and sandals.
Of course, make sure you know the dress code before you assume that business casual is acceptable. If you aren’t sure, call the office and ask the administrative coordinator, or contact the person who scheduled the interview and ask them for advice.
Always dress a bit more professionally than the average employee at the company. If everyone is wearing shorts and T-shirts, for example, you might wear khakis and a Polo shirt or button-down.
5.Casual Interview Attire
If you have an interview at a startup company, nix the head-to-toe formal business attire. You want to look appropriate and professional, but not too formal.
Rather than showing up in a black suit and dress shoes, opt for something that is relaxed but still presentable: relaxed-fit khakis, dark-wash jeans, and a nice top, for example.
6.College Job Interview Attire
Make sure to dress professionally when interviewing for a professional job or internship as a college student. It'll show that you'll know how to behave in a professional manner if you're hired.
Less formal attire is acceptable when interviewing for campus jobs and more informal workplace jobs. However, you still want to dress professionally for most positions, even if they are entry-level. Review these tips for college women and college men on what to wear to an interview, as well as what to wear for an interview for an internship.
When wearing accessories to an interview, less is more. Choose accessories that will enhance your interview attire, not overwhelm it. Like your hair, your makeup should not distract the interviewer. This is not the time for bold lipstick or a glittery eye shadow. Instead, keep makeup subtle and unobtrusive.
Great question - wear what you are comfortable in, it will make you feel more confident if you are wearing something that doesn't cause you to fidget! Different companies are more casual so it is important to check with them before the interview to get a sense of what they think is appropriate.
You want to look as professional as you can even for an internship. Believe it or not the first 10 seconds are critical in an interview because that's known as the first impression.
An interesting article about it is: https://www.careercloud.com/news/the-first-10-seconds-of-the-in
Don't overthink it, but be confident that what you are wearing is empowering you. I would aim for Smart Professional.
Hope this helps,
Basics: for men and women suits are acceptable. Women can opt into wearing a skirt suit or a pantsuit with a nice blouse or a dress with a blazer potentially. Men should wear a suit and a button-up shirt. Make sure your clothes fit you well and are an appropriate length, first impressions are everything! If you have trouble getting a suit for your interview I recommend looking at places like GoodWill or stores like TJ Maxx and Ross. If cost is a constraint there are a few organizations that can help provide you with a great outfit for your interview.
Tips: I always recommend wearing shoes that are stylish yet comfortable. You never know when you may be given a tour of an office building! I also like to bring about 4 copies of my resume in a portfolio (just in case I am interviewing with several leaders or peers).
Austin: Although the final selection of a job candidate are often eliminated because of inappropriate clothing. The facts are that the first impression of someone stays longer than the last impression. You make a statement when you walk through that door and it should be appropriate. Here are some of the inappropriate items that should not be worn:, forget jeans, and beach wear, or over dressing also can be inappropriate, along with too much make-up (for women) or too much jewelry, and for men (tattoos are sometimes not the best so maybe you should wear long sleeve shirt. A good rule to follow for dressing for an interview is dress for a position just above the one you are applying for. Keep in more on the conservative side unless you are applying for some type of fine arts job such as actor, designer, or others in the fine arts area. Men should wear conservative two piece suit, plain color shirt, and a nice silk tie with either plain or small stripe or dots, Wing tip or great for shoes. This is a basic corporate wardrobe, This shows that you are taking this interview seriously. Women should choose a professional looking dress or suit with low heeled shoes makes. This makes the best impression. This is also the corporate look maybe for baking or law etc. For lesser jobs not being corporate you might want to wear a pant suit with or without jacket (not as corporate). However, some hiring managers in creative industries like advertising or publishing, look for a more informal attire but stylish look that is a reflection of your individuality. Use your best judgment and wear whatever is professional and comfortable for you. With that said, personal grooming is even more important than finding the perfect outfit. Be sure that your clothes are ironed, clean, fit well and hair is neat and washed in a business manner. Both men and women should not have perfume or cologne that can be smelled by others, my secret is that body lotion can be better absorbed so that the smell does not affect others in a bad way. They could be allergic to some odors that you are wearing.
Carole recommends the following next steps:
Dressing for success is vital. However, you should also feel comfortable in the clothes you wear to an interview. A pair of slacks (can never go wrong with black) and a blouse/button down shirt (avoiding anything too bright or flashy) is okay, but you also want to feel comfortable in the clothes you wear. There was a time I attended an interview in a lovely blouse, but it felt a bit tight by my neck. I was uncomfortable and unable to concentrate on the conversation during the interview. The lesson I learned is to dress professionally but also feel comfortable.