What to Wear to a Job Interview?

dress-for-successPreparing for job interviews includes dressing for success. Read on for tips on men and women's professional attire to wear to a job interview.

Boost confidence when attending a job interview by dressing for success. From the minute of arrival, it is likely you will be under scrutiny by a potential employer. Read on for tips on making a good impression and what to wear (and not wear) to an interview.

Tips on Dressing for Success

According to Julie-Ann Amos in her book "Be Prepared! Pass That Job Interview" making a first impression depends on many of the following things:

  • Dress;
  • Physical appearance;
  • Neatness;
  • Grooming and personal hygiene.

All of the above are subjective so it is helpful to know what the company dress policy is in advance. Be sure to dress a little smarter than the current staff. Ensure that the chosen outfit is clean and pressed for a professional appearance. Pay attention to details such as buttons, socks and accessories such as bags.
Ideas of What to Wear to an Interview

Color makes a strong statement so choose a businesslike shade. Neutral colors are safest while a little individuality can be achieved with a brighter tie or scarf. While it is important to choose an attractive outfit don't sacrifice personal comfort as this may be noticed by the interviewer. Here are some suggestions for formal interview-wear:

Dressing for Success

  • A grey skirt suit with a light shirt in white
  • A pinstriped trouser suit with a plain shirt (men should wear a tie)
  • A black dress with a white shirt underneath

Less formal options include a collared shirt and smart trousers or a linen suit. Women can opt for simple printed blouses with a plain skirt or trousers.

What Not to Wear at a Job Interview

There are a number of things to avoid wearing to the interview process. Do not take a backpack; a briefcase or portfolio is preferable. Here are some attire not advised for interviews, though some companies will have different policies:

  • Keep jewelry to a minimum (a wedding ring, stud earrings and a watch are acceptable)
  • Facial piercings and tongue jewelry should be removed
  • Shorts and miniskirts are not appropriate for interviews
  • Women must avoid low-cut and revealing clothes such as sheer fabrics
  • Men should avoid short-sleeved shirts, especially with a tie
  • Ill-fitting clothes look unprofessional so try to have a tailored outfit
  • Mismatched socks show a lack of attention for detail
  • Tennis shoes or sneakers are too casual footwear for any interview
  • Stilettos and open-toed shoes are also not suitable in formal situations

Also do not wear strong perfumes or aftershaves as it can be overpowering in close proximity. Aim to be clean and go for a crisp, professional look.

Use the above tips to make a great first impression. Interview success can depend on how you present yourself; so wearing the appropriate clothes can help to boost your chances of getting the job.