Congratulations, you’ve secured an interview! If you’ve prepared well, researched the company and read up on your CV for when they question you about it, then you’re on the right track. However, it can all be undone by attending an interview in unsuitable attire. It can be difficult to know what to wear, especially if it’s your first time, so here’s how to plan your outfit.
Do your research
Just like researching the company and what they’re about, you should try and find out what the interviewers will be wearing. Most often this will be quite formal, and as a rule of thumb you should dress formally too. However, if the company you are going to have a very relaxed dress code, then turning up suited and booted might make you feel a little out of place – and they might think you don’t understand their company culture. Research the website, LinkedIn profiles and ask the recruiter what the best dress code will be.
When you’re in the spotlight and being grilled, you need to feel as comfortable as possible. If you’re waring clothes that are not the right size, too itchy or just not comfortable, then you’re going to be on the backfoot. Wear clothes that you have worn before if possible. If you need to buy an outfit beforehand, try it on before your interview day to make sure it fits as you want.
Iron out the creases
As with your preparation, you should iron out any creases in your clothes before you attend. Again, it sounds obvious, but an unironed shirt or blouse just looks unprofessional and scruffy. Your whole outfit should look great. Similarly, you should make sure your shoes are clean and polished.
Also, you should remember that personal grooming is just as important. Guys, remember to have a shave, or if you’re going to keep your beard, make sure it’s clean and well-trimmed! If you’re wearing makeup, try and keep it quite low-key.
Don’t go in cold
You might not think about it, but the interview room might not be heated, so it could be really cold in there! Take layers, take a blazer, jacket or a smart coat for when your outside, but you could also wear and smart-looking jumper, as it would be reasonable for you to keep it on if you’re cold inside. Similarly, when it’s warm, don’t overdo it so that you’re absolutely boiling!
Once you’ve planned your interview and stepped into the interview room, stop thinking about your outfit. You can’t change it now, and this is the time to sell yourself.