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How to Dress for Your Interview at the Tech Firm

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Section: Dressing for the Occasion - Blog

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So they loved your CV, were intrigued by your cover letter, and you aced that brief phone interview with the recruiter. All that stands in your way now is the final interview with the person that calls the shots. But what are you supposed to wear?

Should you just turn up in jeans and a t-shirt? It’s good enough for Mark Zuckerburg, right?

The short answer is no, and here’s why.

Professionalism rules all

Yes, the tech industry does a great line in CEOs in polo shirts and the like, but that doesn’t mean that you can rock up to an interview in your favourite band merch shirt. You should always give off an air of professionalism at any interview and battered jeans just won’t do the trick.

They say it’s the skills that pay the bills but it’s the first impression that counts in an interview and dressing well is always the first step to giving that great first impression. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to don your three piece suit.

Do your homework

The chances are that the recruiter has already told you something along the lines of “smart casual is the norm, but whatever you’re comfortable in” which doesn’t really do you any favours at all.

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Check out the company’s website or better still their Instagram feed. You’ll most likely see quite a few photos of staff in various work related poses, and this is where you will take your inspiration from. If they’re all in t-shirts and jeans, then you can safely assume that the office is a very casual place.

Level up on formality

Whatever you find in your research, aim for a level above that on the dress code scale. So if it’s super casual, then wear smart casual with a button down shirt and some chinos. This shows that you have made an effort with regards to your appearance and lends you that air of professionalism we mentioned earlier.

Remember your position

Dress code in any tech company can vary greatly depending on a person’s role. If you are applying for a client facing position it might be a good idea to wear what you would expect to wear each day should you get the job. So if for example, you’re going to be wining and dining investors, then a suit jacket is a must.  

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Outfit tips

  • Don’t suit up – As much as it pains us to say this, a tech job interview will most likely never require a full suit. But by all means use the jacket or the trousers separately in a smart casual look.  
  • Press your clothes – Yes, it’s casual but you really don’t want wrinkles and creases down the front of your shirt now, do you?  
  • Forget sneakers – There is such a thing as too casual you know. 
  • Clean your shoes – We’ve said it before, and we’ll say it again, a scuffed shoe can destroy your carefully pieced together outfit. 
  • Avoid branded attire – We’re not sure why you would do this but please don’t wear anything with a brand emblazoned across it to an interview of any kind. It’s both distracting and unprofessional. 
  • Keep it simple – Plain block colours or simple patterns with only two colours are the best way to go.

Remember that whatever you wear, you want the interviewer to remember you and not your outfit. Overdress and they will remember you as the guy that wore a suit to a pyjama party while underdressing labels you as the guy who didn’t really care.

It’s a fine line to tread, but if you can achieve that understated professional look with a smart casual outfit, then you’re giving the interviewer more opportunity to focus on your skills and personality, which is exactly how you should play the interview game. If you're up for some customized advice on what to wear to nail the job, pop by our showroom or set an appointment with one of our expert tailors. 

 

Image Credits: © Sergii Gnatiuk | Dreamstime.com © Gstockstudio1 | Dreamstime.com

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