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Question: We are thinking about making the workplace attire casual for the summer. What would be an appropriate appearance policy?

Answer: In the event that workplace attire changes, it is important to write a comprehensive dress policy so that employees are aware of what attire your company believes to be acceptable for the workplace. This way, if an employee needs to be counseled or disciplined for inappropriate attire, you have a policy upon which to rely. It's also important that you specify the dates that the dress policy change begins and ends. The policy change should be an addendum to your handbook, if you have one, and signed by each employee that they've received notice of the policy change and that they understand it.

Specifically, you'll want to include:

  • Summary statement of the policy change (who/what/where/why)
  • Effective dates of policy change, i.e., "...from (X date) until (X date), employees may wear casual attire during working hours."
  • Examples of acceptable and/or non-acceptable attire
  • Consequences for non-adherence to the policy

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