How you dress for a job interview matters

Dressing for success is an idea that is commonly known in the business world. A business professional may only have one chance to impress a potential client; he or she cannot afford to present a negative image by dressing poorly. The same goes for a job interview.

job interviewHow a job candidate dresses for an interview matters. Get it right and the chances of being hired go way up; get it wrong and there will be no job waiting, even using permanent makeup can increase your chances of getting the job if done correctly.

The need to dress appropriately for a job interview is underscored by three common perceptions of the business world:

  1. Wearing business attire makes one more productive.
  2. Senior managers should always be dressed better than their employees.
  3. Those who dress casually in the workplace do not work as hard.

Whether or not these perceptions translate to fact is irrelevant in terms of a job interview. It only takes one HR staff member who has these perceptions to bring an abrupt and unsuccessful end to an interview. With that in mind, candidates should give a good deal of thought to how they dress and how they look for an interview using the guidelines below.

Guidelines for men

Men are expected to project a particular kind of image that says they care about their personal appearance as much as they do about getting the job. This starts with grooming. Hair should be trimmed and neatly combed; men should choose either a clean-shaven look or a well-groomed beard/moustache; fingernails should be clean and trimmed.

In terms of attire, a properly fitting business suit is the bare minimum. The suit, shirt, and tie should be clean and neatly pressed; no stains or other imperfections should be allowed. Lastly, shoes should be polished and clean. The salary the position offers should reflect the spend on the suit worn, management level inner city workers would have an expectation of high quality suit.

Guidelines for women

Women are already generally regarded as taking pride in their personal appearance. The image one wants to project in the job interview is one of confidence and business focus. As with their male counterparts, women should pay attention to grooming. This includes trimmed and well-done hair, clean and groomed fingernails and modestly applied makeup.

Business suits are a wise choice for creating a good impression in the job interview. Suits should be clean and pressed, without stains or other imperfections. Jewellery should be kept to a minimum, perfume should not be overpowering, and shoes should be attractive but functional.

A watch is beneficial

Silver watch strap or black strap with silver facing examples can be seen at Both men and women will benefit by wearing a wristwatch to an interview. A watch creates the impression that the candidate is concerned about making wise use of time for maximum productivity. However, stay away from flashy or ostentatious watches. Stick with something classic and refined so as not to distract from your overall presentation.

Dressing appropriately for an interview is a crucial part of landing the job. How you dress tells the interviewer a lot about who you really are.

Leave a Reply