We asked you which outfits would be permitted in the workplace:
1 - T-shirt and Bermuda shorts
2 - Crop-top and jeans
3 - T-shirt and trousers
4 - Shirt and trousers (Female)
5 - Shirt and trousers, no tie
6 - Smart jacket, top and skirt
7 - Suit and tie
What did you choose?
- I think there is a strong case for having an office dress code. People need to know how they must 'look', as many are not automatically aware of what's expected.
We all adopt a work and a home persona - it's important to distinguish between the two. If you have a defined and sensible dress code at work, it helps you to work more professionally, and it can also engender respect. Many jobs require post-holders to convey an air of authority - and you cannot possibly do that in a pair of Bermuda shorts!
Our housing association, like many, is a pretty relaxed place, but we need to strike the right note dress-wise to be respected by the tenant, without intimidating them. I'd consider numbers 4, 6 and 7 to be acceptable, although I believe that a sports jacket and shirt without a tie could also work in the right circumstances.
Some of our staff would be very happy to wear a uniform (a la Easyjet), but we're not there yet.
Head of Corporate Service, South Somerset Homes
- I was interested to read your article on casual clothing in the workplace. I was amazed that policing is actually becoming more strict, as my organisation appears to be bucking the trend.
Of the examples given, number 2 would probably be the one that would not be accepted in our workplace.
When I joined the organisation in May 2003, I was issued with a strict dress code - told how long my skirts could be, what sort of earrings and shoes I could wear, etc. We used to have a very traditional culture, and we have done a lot of work to move away from this - one of the changes being the abolishment of the dress code. This occurred within a few weeks of me starting, with the only stipulation being that the branch and reception staff should still wear a uniform. The rest of the workforce has been left to their own devices, with an expectation that we will decide what is appropriate for the circumstances.
As a result, the office environment is a mixture of casual right through to formal attire, depending on the department and the individual's working day. Initially, we found som