Does dress-down Friday improve employee engagement?

Does dress-down Friday improve employee engagement?

May 9, 2014

Dress-down Fridays have been hailed for improving employee engagement, but do they work?

More employers are aiming to keep their workforce productive by allowing – if only for one day – more relaxed attire.

Dress-down days – where colleagues are encouraged to don their casual clothes usually as the weekend is looming – are a popular perk in many corporate offices.

Why? Employees feel more valued and have a greater output, according to Fidessa HR Director Wayne Coomey.

Fidessa is a UK-based company that provides trading, investment and information solutions in the financial services sector, and introduced a dress-down day on the back of colleague feedback.

Wayne told Headlines: “People like to be listened to and are more likely to go above and beyond for a company they respect.

Wayne Coomey
Wayne Coomey

“We provide a comfortable, happy environment and as colleagues provide commitment and dedication to our organisation – it’s a win-win.”

“We value the excellent people we have and we know that our business would not be a successful market leader without them. As a result, we do everything we can to ensure people are invested in, developed and looked after.”

That’s not to say the Donald Drapers of this world need to hang up their ties just yet, though.

Nicholas Bennett, Chairman and Chief Executive of Ledborough Associates – personal and organisational psychologists, said: “The dress code of a company reflects the type of work that the typical employee does.

“Someone working for companies such as Waitrose, Halfords and B&Q, plus many Chinese and Indian restaurants, have to wear corporate or traditional clothes as a marketing and identifying-tool for customers and clients.”

Companies that are willing to invest in treats to make their employees happy and feel valued can go above and beyond a simple dress-down day.

Nicholas, a chartered occupational psychologist and a member of the Association for Business Psychologists, added: “Other gifts such as free fruit, free vending machines for drinks and food, even a lie-in day for the employee of the month are seen as good motivators by most employers – and worth the cost as the benefits outweigh the costs.”