With recent headlines discussing the issue of what’s acceptable to wear in the office, workplace provider Regus surveyed its 3,000 strong UK customer base to find out what’s hot and what’s not when it comes to workplace attire.
Results reveal that established ideas are being well and truly challenged by today’s professionals.
The banking and finance industries have long been regarded as bastions of tradition. And indeed, when questioned, this sector offered the strongest resistance to the idea that a suit and tie is now too formal for the modern workplace. On average, 73% of UK professionals agreed with this statement, but this percentage dropped to just 54% amongst the banking sector.
A suit and tie is too formal for the modern workplace
UK workforce on average 73%
Banking and finance sector 54%
However, other results emerge that will cause old-school traditionalists to splutter into their morning papers. 54% of banking respondents believed that jeans are now acceptable in the office. This is lower than the average for UK professionals as a whole (65%) but still a step-removed from the banking image of old.
The survey also questions attitudes regarding footwear. Over a quarter (26%) of respondents in the banking sector believe sandals to be acceptable and more than one in ten (12%) wouldn’t flap over flip-flops.
Tracksuits were deemed the least acceptable office outfit amongst all sectors, although 16% of respondents in the media and marketing industry see nothing wrong in taking a sporty look into the office.
Richard Morris, UK CEO at Regus, comments: “Everything about the world of work is changing, from where we work to the hours we spend working to what we wear. This more relaxed attitude to workwear is a reflection of the fact that the ‘office’ environment is now a lot less formal in many cases – lifestyle and work are integrating.
“Working alongside people from other companies in co-working space results in a mingling of styles and attitudes and a loosening of the formality that prevailed in the traditional, permanent offices of old.
“Business leaders are learning fast about measuring on results rather than attendance and presentation. If a job’s done well, who cares if it’s achieved in flip-flops?”