In the tech industry dress codes can range from suited and booted to Bermuda shorts and colourful T-shirts, so what should you wear for your interview?
Remember that old cliché:
You never get a second chance to make a first impression.
The interview is your first impression and it’s wise to err on the side of smartness!
If you’re being interviewed for a position in a bank, accountancy practice or any other professional organisation they will expect you to wear a suit, shirt and tie if you’re a man and smart business attire if you’re a woman, no short, short skirts or low cut tops! This is just common sense and although you may find that ties are optional in the workplace, it’s best to be smarter than required than look like your dress code won’t fit in.
If you’re being interviewed for a more creative environment the lines can appear blurred. It may well be that you know someone who has worked for the organisation in the past and assures you that shorts and flip-flops are totally acceptable – but don’t turn up for an interview dressed like this.
We advise that smart clothes are still a good move, it shows respect for the organisation and that you are aware of your image. Even creative people have to dress up to impress their clients sometimes.
Curve balls in the wardrobe department
Don’t be tempted to add a cartoon tie or anything with amusing graphics, you want the interviewers to be focused on your skills, not your attire.
If you have piercings, other than discreet earrings, we’d advise you to remove them for the interview.
Tattoos are no longer unusual, but it’s probably a good idea to ensure they’re covered by your clothing as far as possible for interview. Again, you want people to focus on you and your suitability for the role, not be trying to work out what the bit of a tattoo peeping out of your sleeve is.
Shoes should be cleaned and smart. It’s surprising how many people wear a really nice suit and then forget to clean their shoes. There is another old adage that says ‘You are not well-dressed without clean shoes’. There’s a subliminal message about attention to detail – and you really don’t want people to doubt you in relation to that if they’re looking for a coder.
Check your hands look tidy – there’s nothing worse than broken or dirty nails or rough hands (you will be shaking hands). Nice looking hands are not just for women, they are equally important for men.
Tip: It’s good practice to stick to low-key colours, but there’s nothing wrong with a colourful tie or scarf to add a bit of interest. It’s also a good way to help the interviewer(s) to remember you – in a positive way.
If you're not sure your agency will almost certainly know the client well enough to give you advice.