These days, many business owners understand the importance of their employees projecting a professional image to customers, particularly at the first point of contact. By creating a good first impression by being welcoming and friendly is a very good customer service skill to have and use in any business situation. However, if the employee who conveys that message is wearing inappropriate or unkempt, smelly clothing that does not fit in with the culture or office environment then it can create a bad impression and project a poor image for the business in the eyes of customers. An exception to this rule will of course be in a factory or workshop situation that may not have the resources or requirement for a front office person.
In back-of-house areas, it is accepted that employees will generally wear more casual and flexible attire, however when dealing with customers in reception and front counter areas, most employers would expect a higher dress standard, although again this will depend on what the work role demands.
For example, many large and small businesses can outfit their employees in modern uniforms that are designed and made in the company’s colors or branded with a smart business logo to convey a professional look. However, wearing a company uniform can place an element of responsibility on the wearer to project a good impression at all times both on and off-duty while wearing the company uniform. For example, conveying a bad impression or displaying poor customer service skills can effectively damage the reputation of a business that will inevitably over time lead to loss of sales and bottom-line profits. Alternatively, providing good customer service skills while wearing the company uniform can lead to increased sales volumes and continual customer loyalty.
Nowadays, although good customer service is a vital ingredient in any corporate type role, dress codes have become more relaxed and casual with employees being encouraged to display their personal tastes by wearing fashionable clothing and having slick trendy hair styles. In general, an employee who has a clean, fresh, well groomed look allows an approaching customer to focus their attention on what the employee has to say without looking at what condition clothing is or how dirty shoes are.