Dress for Success: Interview Attire

Dress for SuccessIn the Bay Area, choosing the appropriate attire for an interview can be a tricky endeavor. You don’t want to arrive underdressed and appear unprofessional, and you don’t want to arrive overdressed (especially for an in-house interview) and indicate you aren’t a fit with the culture.

Here are some helpful guidelines:

  • Always wear a suit to interview at a large firm. If you are concerned that wearing a suit will alert your current firm that you are interviewing, tell your recruiter, who can confirm with the firm ahead of time that business casual will be acceptable with the interviewers given the circumstances.
  • Wear a suit to interview at most mid-size and small firms, though if meet with a firm that exclusively represents startup companies you may want to go more casual – the firm’s culture may be more in line with their clients and a suit could show you don’t understand the culture. Your recruiter should be able to give you insight.
  • If you interview with a financial institution, wear a suit.
  • For most non-tech companies, a suit is appropriate.
  • For technology companies and startups, business casual is usually your best bet. If you do wear a suit to interview at a technology company, a light color and less traditional pattern is a better option. If you aren’t sure, always confirm with your recruiter!