Costumes are the first impression that you have of the character before they open their mouth-it really does establish who they are ... Colleen Atwood

Whether you are a new graduate embarking on a career, a student applying for a part-time job or someone looking for the next big thing, getting ready for a job interview can be stressful because often times, the ideal look eludes us. And no matter how unfair you may think it is, your image “says” something about you even before you speak a word.

Like your resume, clothes make a strong statement about you. In fact, the first judgment an interviewer will make will be based on what you are wearing and then your resume.

Simply put, you must pay attention to your image during an employment interview because you want the hiring manager to get a good perception of you and not be distracted by what you are wearing. Let your talent and personality get noticed – not your clothes!

While dress code remains casual for certain industries in the Philippines, it is a totally different world out there. And it is always better to err on the side of conservatism and be dressed too formally than too casually. Moreover, though many companies have relaxed the dress code for their employees, interviews still follow the conservative trend.

Neither is there a need for you to buy a new wardrobe. One or two quality business suits should serve you well until you get your first pay check. Your friends or family will not fault you for wearing the same nice outfit for every interview. However if you need variety, you may want to consider just buying another shirt or blouse or other accessories without having to break out the piggy bank.

If you need a quick review of basic professional dress code, try these guidelines for a successful interview wardrobe:

In short, you should be pressed and polished for an interview. Research shows that 55% of someone’s overall impression of you is based on how you look. There is an upside to being well dressed as well. You project an air of confidence and being interested in the job. And that is something every interviewer will always be impressed about.

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