Business Casual Takes on a New Look

Business casual has taken on a new meaning since the pandemic started and, for some, every day feels like casual Friday. T-shirts, shorts and even the dreaded Crocs are making their way into the office more often as white-collar workers redefine “workwear.”

In total, 53% of business professionals said their work attire has become more relaxed in their office compared to what they wore pre-pandemic, a new Office Pulse study of 501 white-collar workers across North America found. While most are a bit lackadaisical with what they decide to throw on each day, some 5% of workers said people around their office have been dressing more formally compared to before the pandemic.

Who knows, Formal Fridays might become the new thing as professionals look for any reason to dress up and ditch their sweats and pajamas for good.

What have you seen people wearing more of around the office now compared to before the pandemic?

Jeans: 43%
T-Shirts: 28%
Shorts: 23%
Crocs/Flip-Flops/Sandals: 20%
Formal wear (ties, dresses): 17%
Athleisure Wear: 16%
Tank Tops: 8%
Sweatpants: 7%
Pajamas: 7%
Jorts: 5%

Senior leadership isn’t exempt from the lax lifestyle. The habitual casual attire is hitting C-suites, too, with executives seen wearing more jeans, t-shirts and other items around the office. And while still small, the odds of seeing your CMO in Crocs might’ve shot up a bit.

I’ve seen senior executives wearing more __ now compared to before the pandemic.

Jeans: 35%
Formal Wear (ties, dresses): 15%
T-Shirts: 14%
Athleisure Wear: 9%
Shorts: 9%
Crocs/Flip-Flops/Sandals: 6%
Sweatpants: 6%

Whether you’re relishing the sweet embrace of the necktie or reaching for your sweatpant security blanket, we’re wearing whatever makes us most comfortable in the office. In the end, as long as the work is getting done, that’s all that matters.

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