Small Business News from 4imprint
Many businesses want to establish and maintain a sense of formality on their premises, as they believe it gets people in the right frame of mind to work hard. But in recent years, it’s fair to say there’s been a bit of a shift in attitudes, with the idea of wearing a suit to work increasingly being seen as old-fashioned, stuffy and uncomfortable. And you don’t just have to take our word for it.

A new study by Printerland has revealed that fewer than 1 in 5 people would wear a suit to work, which indicates a growing preference for comfier options such as t-shirts.

So should your organisation adopt a less formal approach to workwear, and how could you use this to your advantage?

Staff feel more comfortable
The study identified a very simple reason why wearing casual clothes at work can be a good thing – it makes people feel more comfortable and therefore enhances their productivity and creativity. As the company’s HR manager Catherine Bannan notes: “Being in clothes we find comfortable can spark our imagination.”

Opens up marketing possibilities
If any employees are in customer or client-facing roles, you could take advantage of their desire to wear casual clothes by providing them with stylish logo printed garments. In fact, there’s all sorts of clothing that can be personalised with a brand logo or slogan to push your message to a target audience, from polo shirts and performance t-shirts to fleeces and accessories such as caps.

Know where to draw the line
Having a relaxed dress code is one thing, but letting staff look unprofessional is quite another, so it’d be best you set your guidelines from the outset. This can be very important in a workspace, as the Printerland study revealed some people feel very strongly about what their colleagues wear. For instance, what would be your views regarding football or vest tops, shorts or flip flops?

Find out what your staff prefer
Interestingly, there seems to be some regional variations when it comes to office attire around the UK. 1 in 3 people in the north-west still wear formal clothing to work, while nearly half of those in the north-east have swapped a traditional suit for a t-shirt or polo shirt. This is perhaps a cue for businesses to find out what their staff would prefer, as well as what their customers and clients might demand or expect from a business they deal with.

Source / Further Reading
T-shirts now more popular office attire than suits
SmallBusiness.co.uk