Military Employment Guide: Purchasing Business Attire

Military Guide to Employment

Step by Step Guide to Employment: General Military Community – Purchase Business Attire

When it comes to finding a job after the military, the interview will be a big step to getting hired. You might need to go for more than one, depending on the company. And whether the interview is in person or virtual, you want to be dressed correctly for it.

What you wear to the interview matters. For most interviewers, you want to dress in appropriate business attire.

What is business attire?

Business attire is clothing that is appropriate for the workplace. This may differ slightly depending on the type of job or environment. You should research and be aware of what type of clothing is acceptable with this particular employer, and lean on the side of formal.

What does business attire look like?

  • Business Traditional is more formal. For men, this could include a formal suit or tie, an upscale sports jacket, and dress pants. For women, this could be a skirt suit, pantsuit, and formal blouse and stockings.
  • Smart Casual is a step down from business traditional. For men, this could include a sports jacket with a tie, dress pants, and a button-down shirt. For women, this could be a dressy sweater, dress pants or a skirt, a blouse, and a top.
  • Business Casual is even more casual than the other two. For men, this could include khakis, or dress pants, shirts with collars, and sweaters. For women, this could include nice pants, skirts, a blouse, or a top.

What you should think about when it comes to your interview outfit?

In addition to sticking with business attire, you also need to think about the comfort and fit of your outfit. The clothing might pass all the business attire tests but if you don’t feel comfortable with what you are wearing, that isn’t going to set you up for success. You don’t want to get distracted by your clothing when you should be focused on presenting yourself to a potential employer.

You want your clothing to fit well, and not be too baggy or too tight. You want to be able to walk around comfortably. Practice wearing your clothes and moving around in them before the actual interview.

You want your clothing choices to also make you feel confident. If your clothing makes you feel that way, you will be able to more easily show confidence at the interview.

What shouldn’t you wear to an interview?

There are certain items you shouldn’t wear to a job interview. You don’t want to wear anything too revealing, remember you aren’t dressing for a night out with friends. Think about the colors you are choosing, and try not to go with too bright of colors or extreme patterns. If in doubt, keep the clothing more conservative.

Stay away from words on your shirts. While the wording might not be inappropriate to you, you never know what might be for the company. This isn’t professional and could lead to not being taken as such or offending someone by the words, whatever they might be.

You should stay away from flip flops, sandals, ripped jeans, tank tops, halter tops, yoga pants, athletic gear, or athletic shoes. Also, watch for heavy cologne, and too much makeup. Remember, less is probably best.

What if you have a video interview?

If you have a video interview, treating it like an in-person interview is the best way to go. You want to make sure you get ready just like you would if you were going somewhere for the interview. You should be aware of clothing that looks good on camera and stick to more neutral colors.

First impressions go a long way when it comes to a job interview. Potential employers will be judging you from the minute you walk through that door. Your outfit and how you present yourself matters. You want your outfit to show you are confident and want the job. That you are taking this seriously and you are professional. Your outfit can make or break an interview.