According to a recent survey by SEEK, almost half of Australia’s employees who don’t wear a uniform to work report feeling stressed about unfair expectations surrounding their clothing choices.
Currently, four-in-ten Australians wear a uniform for work, with those in health care, retail and consumer products most likely to wear a uniform or company-branded clothing.
For those who don’t wear a uniform, roughly half indicate experiencing difficulty in choosing what to wear each day (49 per cent).
Women are more likely to be stressed than men over what to wear to work and 45 per cent of those surveyed think there are unfair expectations placed on how females look and dress at work.
71 per cent of women reported it was difficult to know what to wear to work each day compared with a third of men.
6 in 10 also agree that colleagues subconsciously judge each other based on what they’re wearing.
Commenting on SEEK’s own workplace attire, Kathleen McCudden, Group HR Director at SEEK said the research shows that many Australians do experience stress when choosing what to wear each day.
“The research indicates this is more pronounced for women than men. Some people also believe that being confined to a dress code could impact on their job prospects, either in relation to career progression or how they are perceived by their colleagues.
“That’s one of the reasons we have a relaxed approach with the dress code at SEEK. We encourage employees to come to work dressed how they feel most comfortable, whilst also keeping in mind the tone of our culture which is relaxed, collaborative and inclusive.”
McCudden suggests it’s more important to value an employees skills than their appearance.
“We value the skills of our employees and what they contribute to the business. We definitely don’t want people to feel limited or disadvantaged by what their wardrobe looks like. We are more interested in the skills, experience and ideas which people can bring to our organisation.”