What Should You Wear To A Virtual Interview?

Interview Tips

July 01, 2021

In the age of a global pandemic, virtual interviews are becoming increasingly normal. While interviewing from the comfort of your home brings a certain element of ease, there is still a level of professionalism that must be maintained. 

The rule of thumb to follow is simple: replicate what you’d normally wear to an in-person interview. After all, you wouldn’t meet the hiring manager in a baseball t-shirt and pyjama pants, right? Common sense is your friend here. Having said that, if you are still stuck for inspiration, here are a few more tips to help you decide what to wear to your next virtual meeting. 

Clothes that mean business

Wear business professional or business casual clothing. Opt for a business casual button-down or a blouse that you feel most comfortable in. Depending on the position and company culture, your shirt colour can be more muted and neutral or you can opt for a funky pattern or bright colour to showcase your personality. More often than not, what we wear is a reflection of who we are and it is important to make a good first impression. 

If you don’t know, ask somebody

If you’re working with a recruiter, go ahead and ask what they suggest you wear to the interview. Most recruiters know exactly what the employers expect and will guide you accordingly. If you don’t have a recruiter, you can also reach out to a current employee of the company and see if they have any suggestions. And finally, reach out to your own network. Perhaps you have friends or colleagues or even a mentor with virtual interview experience and can provide some fashion guidance! 

Look up the employer online

We live in a digital age, so why not make use of it? Several employers have their “About Us” pages or even careers pages on their website as well on social media (for example, KPMG Careers UK, or Mazars Life UK), where they post photographs that give you a peek into what the office looks like. Many companies have posted online about their pivot to remote work & shared visuals (in the form of screenshots) to go with it. You can get a fair idea of what the office culture & general environment is like. Focus on what the employees are wearing behind the screen. 

Dress head-to-toe

You might be tempted to focus on the waist up because the camera does, but you should dress up head-to-toe like you would for an in-person interview. Why? For one, if you do end up needing to get up or if the laptop moves from its position, you don’t want to reveal joggers underneath a formal business shirt. Secondly, research has hinted that your clothes have a direct, positive impact on your mood, confidence, attention, focus, and productivity. 

Overall virtual interviews are less formal than in-person interviews, which allows you some lee-way to dress more comfortably. However, you should always look dignified and demonstrate that you’ve put in an effort to dress accordingly even if you’re just sitting on your couch or at your dining room table. Like it’s said, dress for the job you want!

Written by Lubna bin Zayyad
Lubna bin Zayyad is an international student from Canada studying at the University of Westminster. 

Photo by Julia M Cameron from Pexels

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