Just because Mark Zuckerberg gets away with a hoodie and flip-flops doesn’t mean employers are OK with you dressing down for an interview.
Wearing inappropriate clothing is the biggest interview mistake young adults make, according to a new survey of hiring managers.
About 75 percent of the 501 hiring managers polled by Adecco, a human resources consulting company, said that Millennials, those born between 1981-2000, frequently fail to wear appropriate interview attire. Fashion gaffes were the most common mistake observed, followed by Millennials posting “compromising content” on social media channels like Facebook (70 percent of hiring managers saw this) and lack of research on the prospective position (62 percent saw this.)
Millennials can hardly afford to appear unprofessional. Hiring managers surveyed by Adecco said they were three times as likely to hire a mature worker, defined as age 50 or above, as they were to hire a Millennial. Recent employment data confirm that young Americans are getting left behind in the economic recovery as companies tap older workers to fill expanding payrolls.
Conversely, companies seeking young talent may want to lighten up on that whole dress code thing. According to a study released earlier this year by MTV, 79 percent of Millennials think they should be allowed to wear jeans to work at least sometimes, compared to 60 percent of Boomers who said the same.
Still, when heading to your next interview, it's probably best to err on the side of conservative dress. Most American workers frown upon racier attire, as a different Adecco survey revealed.
As for whether a company’s dress code has anything to do with its workers’ productivity after the interview process is long gone, the jury is still out on that one. For every study showing that formal dress improves productivity by creating a professional environment, there’s another showing that casual threads do the same by increasing employee morale.
So what do you think?