Whilst it can feel like the most important thing to prepare for during your job application is your psychometric tests and your interview answers, it’s important to remember that over 50% of communication is non-verbal. It’s, therefore, essential that the way you present yourself is authentic, so you can be comfortable and confident, but also in keeping with the role that you’re aspiring to secure.
Check the brief – first things first, make sure that you look for a dress code in the invitation to the interview. There may not be one specified, but is there is you’ll fall at the first hurdle if you failed to follow instructions!
Check out the company website – you can get a strong sense of how formal a company is from the website, recruitment materials and social media channel. If everyone is in jeans, you might not want to turn up in your smartest suit!
Air on the smart side – your interview is your opportunity to present the best version of you, so even if it is a creative office where everyone is very dressed down steer clear of ripped jeans, messy hair or muddy shoes. After all, if you can’t smarten up for the interview there’s not much hope of you smartening up once you start!
Be comfortable – you need to be feeling confident and positive in your interview, so best to stick to an outfit you feel really good in rather than trying to be something you’re not. That being said, without knowing the environment really well yet, avoid your most fashion forward trends – you need to be able to demonstrate you can fit into this new environment so don’t take big risks with visible tattoos and jewellery unless you’re really sure that’s what they’re after. Same goes for being physically comfortable – you won’t feel as confident if you’re fiddling with an awkward hem or hobbling in painful heels.
Think about it – prepare an outfit the night before so you don’t have to risk panic on the morning of the interview. Arrive feeling calm and collected – and confident!
If it doubt dress slightly smarter – it’s better to look slightly too smart than underdressed. If you’re interviewing for one of the Big 4 you’ll notice from pictures on their websites that many staff don’t wear ties but if you’re interviewing at the big 4 it’s advisable to wear one.
What colours should I wear? – If in doubt a white shirt is a sensible thing to wear. It’s clean crisp and neutral. If you think you need to wear a tie avoid comical ties a red or blue tie with a simple pattern on it would be an ideal professional look.
Clean your shoes – this might sound obvious but it’s essential you turn up to the interview with clean / polished shoes. This is a detail that many interviewers will notice.
Finally don’t forget your psychometric tests – it’s common for hiring managers to retest candidates at their assessment centre day or at interview. They are most likely to retest your numerical reasoning and verbal reasoning tests so keep practicing them until you have secured your job offer.