person wearing blue suit jacket

Pros and Cons of a Dress code in a Workplace

There are benefits as well as disadvantages of a dress code in a workplace. For some companies, dress code is a must, where in others it is not so necessary. Dress code can be either very strict or somewhat casual, where you only have one or two rules on what to wear.

In this post, we are going through the benefits of a dress code in a workplace and if you should apply dress code in your company. I will also have some examples on where dress code can be helpful and how strict it should be.

No need to decide what to wear in the morning

There are some examples of people who wear the same clothes every day for work. One of these being the CEO of Facebook. When you wear the same clothes to work every day, it removes the stress and variable of choice on what to wear. You can focus your energy on the more important tasks, when you don’t have to overthink what you will wear.

Of course, you have to wash those clothes, so having multiple pairs of jeans and T-shirts, for example, might be a good idea. For some, choosing what to wear for work might be one of the best parts of the day. If this is the case and you don’t have a dress code in your workplace, by all means, ignore me. If you however, don’t really care and want to make your life a little bit easier, you could try out the method I mentioned before.

Looks more professional and establishes a brand that way

For some companies, the way their employees dress is part of their brand. One option being a law firm. Most of the times, lawyers wear suits and such. If you went to a law firm looking for legal help, and they were dressed in hoodies and sneakers, would that build trust towards that firm for you? I don’t think so.

I am not saying the clothes make the employees professional. However, sometimes what your customers see is what they will think and make their opinion on. If they saw a lawyer with a hoodie, even if it was the best lawyer in the entire world, they might not have given them a chance.

Brand can be built without suits as well. You could have your employees wear just a T-shirt with your brand colors and logos on them and that way build a brand.

Removes the stress among worker on how to dress properly

When employees don’t have to think about what they wear, since they have strict rules for that, they have less to worry about. It can give them a sense of security, when going into events and meetings, when they know they are not under or overdressed.

It also removes the possibility of someone being picked on based on their clothing, or if not remove it, at least decreases the chance of it. This is one of the benefits of a dress code in schools, but I think it can apply to the business world as well.

Increases work efficiency

When everybody is looking professional, they also feel like so. It won’t distract them from their tasks, since they don’t need to spend time worrying about their clothing. Knowing that you look professional might give you some confidence boost and this way allows you to do your job more efficiently.

One business where there is somewhat of a dress code is construction workers. They wear the clothes they do to protect their own clothes as well as their safety. The work-wear construction workers wear also is more durable and has pockets and such for the tools they need. This way clothing can improve work efficiency as well.

How strict dress code should be?

Dress codes can vary. They can be very strict, meaning they decide everything, from colors to accessories. It can also be very casual, and the workplace will only tell you certain colors your shirt should be or make you wear their brand T-shirt, for example.

If the workplace requires employees to wear suits, that might be somewhere in between. There are different options among suits as well, even if it might sound very strict at first. Wearing a suit for work makes employees seem more professional overall.

Example of more casual dress code as well. That might be that employees have to wear their company’s shirt at work, but everything else is up to them. Wearing similar shirts at work might be a good idea in physical stores, for example. This way, customers can easily recognize who to ask for help if needed.

Disadvantages of a dress code

Even that there are many benefits on having a dress code in your company, there are disadvantages as well. The first one being, that it might for some employees be a big turn-off, when they are seeking a job. If your company is in a field of business, where having a dress code really is not that important, it might be a good idea to drop the idea of having it.

Another disadvantage is that it will limit the freedom your employees have. They might feel like you are not letting them be themselves. Again, if your field of business doesn’t require dress codes, it is not necessary.

The third con that dress codes bring is that you might have to offer those clothes to your employees. If you wear your company’s T-shirts, you have to print those for your employees. For some businesses, this can not be avoided, but if you can, this is a place where you can save some money and spend it on something better.

Should you apply dress code in your company?

If your field of business requires your employees to look professional and wear suits, they probably will expect it and won’t be upset about it. These might be law firms, as mentioned before. There are other businesses as well, where wearing suits is common.

Another case where you could want a dress code, is a physical store and you want to establish a brand and make your employees stand out from the crowd in case customers need any help.

The third reason to have a dress code is if you want to make a clear brand. If your branding requires your workers to dress in a certain way, and you have considered all the cons of the dress code and still think it is worth it, go ahead. The way your employees dress can give a very strong and professional image to your customers.

Final words

There are benefits as well as disadvantages on having a dress code in your business. It is really up to the line of business and you if you want to have a dress code in your company.

Hopefully this post can help you to choose if the dress code will help your business or if it’s not necessary. Have a nice day.

Other business-related posts can be found here.