This anonymous interview is with an Academic librarian who has been a hiring manager and a member of a hiring or search committee. This librarian works at a library with 10-50 staff members in a Suburban area in the Midwestern US.
What Candidates Should Wear
Should the candidate wear a suit to the interview?
√ Probably not (but it’s ok if the candidate does wear one)
An outfit with a coordinated blazer and trousers:
√ I do not know and/or care
Bare arms are inappropriate in an interview, even in the summer.
If a woman wears a skirt to an interview, should she also wear pantyhose?
√ No, but it’s not a dealbreaker
Women should wear make-up to an interview:
√ Other: I don’t care, but if it is distracting people will be looking at it rather than listening to the candidate.
Is there anything a candidate might wear that would cause them to be instantly out of the running? If you have any funny stories about horrifying interview outfits, we’d love to hear them.
I think there should be a certain level of professionalism. No ratty jeans, no t-shirts, no guys pants that show off their boxers, but I haven’t seen any of these in interviews here.
Do you expect different levels of formality of dress, depending on the position you’re hiring for?
Which jewelry may candidates wear:
√ Single, simple necklace, bracelet, and/or ring
√ A few simple necklaces, bracelets, and/or rings
√ All of the simple necklaces, bracelets, and rings he or she can load on
√ Arty or more elaborate necklaces, bracelets, or rings
√ Nose Ring (nostril)
√ Eyebrow Ring, Monroe piercing, septum piercing, or other face piercing
√ Multiple Ear Piercings
√ Large gauge ear jewelry (stretched ears)
Which hair colors are acceptable for candidates:
√ All of them, even pink
The way a candidate dresses should:
√ I don’t really care how a candidate dresses
How does what a candidate wears affect your hiring decision?
If what they wear is too distracting, it can cause people to ignore what the candidate is saying. Also, whatever you wear, be confident and comfortable in it. Playing with jewelry and clothes during the interview is definitely problematic.
What This Library Wears
How do you dress when you are going to conduct an interview?
Nice slacks and a dress blouse or a suit.
On a scale of one (too dressed up for my workplace) to five (too casual), khakis and a polo shirt are:
What’s the dress code at your library/organization?
√ Other: We don’t have one
Librarians at your organization wear: (Please check all that apply)
√ Other: Name tags for special occasions such as new student orientation.
This survey was co-authored by Jill of Librarian Hire Fashion – submit your interview outfit to her blog!
Photo: me in my interview clothes by Flickr user antmoose via Creative Commons License