Discussion Thread

  • 1.  Understanding the appropriate dress code for a job interview

    Posted 02-05-2020 08:43 AM
    I believe this post will help the students coming out of universities or colleges. I remember there were several career fairs at my university and the dress code was always suit and tie. I had a lot of friends that didn't like to dress up, especially using a tie. I even remember seeing one of my friends entering a career fair all dressed up and once inside the event, he was carrying his jacket and tie in his arm.

    As students move from the career fair phase to the interview phase, I noticed the suit and tie dress code is not the norm in most of the engineering firms. I know you don't want to show up overdressed or especially underdressed for an interview, but dressing in a way that makes you feel confident and really to take the job opportunity.

    So my question is what do you go by to understand the appropriate dress code for a job interview?



    ------------------------------
    Julian Valencia A.M.ASCE
    Project Engineer
    Houston, TX
    ------------------------------


  • 2.  RE: Understanding the appropriate dress code for a job interview

    Posted 02-06-2020 10:24 AM
    I was always told to dress business formal for a job interview. It is true that sometimes this isn't required. But I believe it is the responsibility of the interviewer to communicate this to you rather than you make the judgement yourself. I have showed up to an interview at a landfill site wearing a blazer and high heels. It was completely unnecessary and I should've worn more comfortable shoes, but the interviewer forgot to mention that fact and I didn't think it was okay for me to dress down on my own. I'd rather be overdressed for an interview or career fair rather than dressed down.

    ------------------------------
    Marina D'Souza S.M.ASCE
    Philadelphia PA
    ------------------------------



  • 3.  RE: Understanding the appropriate dress code for a job interview

    Posted 02-07-2020 04:08 AM
    I always ask the ones who setup the interview what their dress code is just to be sure.

    ------------------------------
    Tung Nguyen, MSc
    PhD Candidate
    Washington State University
    ------------------------------



  • 4.  RE: Understanding the appropriate dress code for a job interview

    Posted 02-07-2020 10:23 AM
    For job interviews, it is better to be overdressed than under-dressed in my experience. Even if the day-to-day dress code at the firm is fairly casual, you should always dress on the more formal end of the spectrum for an interview unless specifically told otherwise by the firm. Interview dress code and regular work dress code are two totally different things in my opinion. I agree with Marina, if there is a specific dress code, it is the company's responsibility to you that. Otherwise, wear the suit.

    ------------------------------
    Maegan Nunley P.E., M.ASCE
    President
    Luna Engineering
    Columbus OH
    ------------------------------



  • 5.  RE: Understanding the appropriate dress code for a job interview

    Posted 02-10-2020 10:54 AM
    I definitely agree with the other responses that it is better to be potentially overdressed. Our firm has a very relaxed in-office dress code. However, if you are headed to meetings, you are expected to dress a little nicer. If the company is interviewing for a project, you are expected to dress closer to business professional. Most interview candidates seeking employment dress somewhere between business casual and business professional.
    Unless the firm you are applying with makes people wear jackets and ties, as a general rule I think you should go to an interview dressed up more than would be required for a normal business day. You want your appearance to show that you are taking the interview seriously.

    Specifically for ladies:
    You shouldn't wear high heels unless you wear them regularly enough to walk in them confidently. The way you enter a room says something about you, and you don't want that to be overshadowed by seeming unsteady.

    ------------------------------
    Heidi Wallace EI, A.M.ASCE
    Engineer Intern
    Tulsa OK
    ------------------------------