Is it your first day at the office and you’re not sure what to wear? Don’t worry because even people who have been working for years encounter this problem. The first thing that you need to do is to find out what dress code policy your company implements. Office dress codes are basic guidelines that you should stick to when choosing what to wear for work.
Depending on the dress code, there could be limited options available at your disposal. There are typically four types of dress codes: business formal, business professional, business casual, and casual. Below are some guidelines that will help you decide what to wear for every dress code in the office:
This dress code is usually being adhered to by high-ranking executives, people in sales, people in law firms, and people in similar working environments. In comparison with the other office dress codes, business formal is considered to be the highest level of professional wear.
If you are required to dress business formal, the best choice would be a well-cut pantsuit. Alternatively, you could choose to wear a skirt suit. They need to be in conservative neutral shades like black and navy. Beneath that should be a white button-up shirt with a collar.
As for shoes, closed-toe heels in neutral colors are preferred. It should go together with dark-colored tights. If you should wear an accessory, then choose something conservative like studs rather than dangling earrings.
Business professional is a bit more relaxed compared to business formal although it is still considered conservative and neat. It allows a bit more options when it comes to patterns and colors. It is also known as traditional business.
Instead of wearing a pantsuit or a skirt suit, you can wear a skirt, a shirt with a blazer or jacket on top. Your skirt and jacket should always be in conservative colors. On the other hand, you can choose any solid color for your shirt.
As for shoes, closed-toe pumps are your best choice. Then pair it with hosiery in dark or nude-colored tones. As for accessories, you are allowed a bit more freedom to choose what to wear. However, remember to keep it moderate and wear only high-quality pieces of jewelry. For example, you can wear a big watch or a chunky scarf.
Generally, business casual allows you to inject your personality into your office wear while also maintaining your professional look. Unlike the two previously mentioned dress codes, it gives you more leeway in terms of color and accessories. However, it can be interpreted differently at different companies. So, you should check with Human Resources and avoid making an assumption.
In business casual, you are allowed to wear business separates instead of a full suit. For instance, you can wear a dress with a cardigan or jacket on top. Colored shirts and blouses are also allowed. However, you should choose solid colors or muted patterns. Slacks and khakis are also allowed.
As for shoes, there are a lot more options available for you. You can wear flats and loafers in addition to pumps. Your shoes can be in any color; however, they should still be closed-toe. As for accessories, you can wear large pieces of jewelry. It doesn’t have to be high-quality ones. Also, you can also wear a scarf.
Casual dress code offers the most freedom when choosing what to wear for work. Nonetheless, you should still make it a point to dress appropriately and neatly. They say that employees are judged by the way that they dress. So, always remember to dress for success.
Instead of wearing conservative tops, you are free to wear well-fitted tops and blouse. Pants or skirts with comfortable fabrics like cotton are also allowed. Some companies allow denim, while some don’t. So, it’s best if you ask Human Resources about this. If they do, opt for more decent denim cut instead of casual cuts such as flare jeans or cutoffs.
Unlike the three other dress codes, you can wear open-toed shoes. However, you should avoid wearing casual footwear such as flip-flops. As for accessories, you are allowed to wear large rings and bracelets, as well as any type of earrings and necklaces.
It’s pretty easy to determine what clothes would be perfect for a certain dress code now that you’ve read about these tips and some advice. Although some companies have different perceptions of dress codes, it is quite easy to play it safe by dressing more formally.