Casual dress can boost productivity

Aug 03 2004 by Brian Amble Print This Article

Firms that allow their staff to wear casual clothes can benefit from increased productivity, new research suggests.

A survey of 500 employers by employment law firm Peninsula has found that the number of firms 'going casual' has increased over the past two years.

Two thirds now say that they are happy for workers to dress down at least one day a week, up from half two years ago.

A third of firms allow workers to wear casual clothes all the time, with technology and IT firms the most relaxed about office attire.

The findings are in direct contradiction to a survey carried out earlier this year by executive communications consultancy The Aziz Corporation which claimed that dressing down had become a victim of a post- dotcom backlash against casual dress.

The Aziz research found that fewer than a third of UK bosses let their staff dress casually at all times, a fall of ten per cent on 2003.

But Peninsula's MD Peter Done, is clearly not one of these and said that wearing casual clothes provided motivation without harming business.

"It is good to see that employers are a lot more flexible than any other time. Over the last five years we have seen casual Friday increase substantially from just a small percentage of employers to a more significant number."