Ready to trade in your high heels and sport coats for something a little more comfy? If the last two years are any indication, it’s likely you’ll get to. More employers are embracing casual workplace attire, and that’s expected to continue in 2018.
Take corporate giant JPMorgan Chase, for example. Chase executives circulated a memo to their more than 200,000 employees in 2016, introducing business casual as the new daily dress code. It was a drastic change in Wall Street culture, where suits have been the norm for decades. They joined other large companies like General Electric and IBM in adopting a more relaxed environment.
Why the trend shift to casual dress?
Younger employees, for one, and a competitive job market. As millennials and members of Generation Z make their entrance into the workforce, they are looking for employers who provide increased flexibility — flexibility to work remotely and dress casually — and who represent their values and beliefs.
The technology era has also contributed to the trend. Employers that aspire to be on the leading edge of technology find they too have to adapt to a younger, more hip audience.
But that doesn’t mean young employees are the only ones looking for more comfort at work. A recent OfficeTeam study showed that 58 percent of individuals — baby boomers and gen-Xers included — prefer a business casual or casual dress code.
What are the benefits?
Many of you may already have a relaxed dress code at the office, so high five for that. At WorkPlacePro, we wear jeans and tees with the best of them. It’s a great way to promote our products, and it creates an enjoyable, creative, inspired — and still professional — environment for employees.
If you’re considering making changes in your work environment so employees can feel a bit more comfortable, but you aren’t sure of the value, keep these positives in mind: casual dress can increase morale, ease financial strain for employees, and make employees feel like they are appreciated and free to express themselves.
How to get started
If your employees are used to dressing up every day, then you might want to start slow. Ease into the culture change in order for everyone — including your customers — to get used to it. Make one or two days a week the casual dress days, and increase from there as you see fit. Establish or update an official dress code policy, so that employees are clear on what is allowed. And encourage them to continue to dress in business attire for important meetings, presentations or interviews when appropriate.
Workplace apparel can build group unity for your business, and can help support and raise money for a cause. Check out our inventory to find attire that best suits your cause or your organization!