Employee uniforms are an important part of many businesses. They make it clear who in a venue is an employee ready to assist and can even be used to differentiate one type of employee from another. They ensure that all of your staff look respectable, recognizable, and friendly no matter what their personal style is at home or out with friends. In many businesses, a company uniform also ensures that each employee is safely attired for the work environment with things like thick fabric or close-toed shoes.
While there are many types of employee uniforms out there, varying widely based on company and position, the key elements of a great uniform are all the same:
Comfortable and Sturdy
The first and most important design feature of any employee uniform is comfort and practicality for what your employees will be doing. If you’ve ever worn a work uniform, you know that the weight and breathability of the shirt fabric matter more than almost any other aspect of the uniform from the wearer’s point of view. Of course, the design of the uniform is also important for practicality’s sake. Ideally, your uniform pieces will be even better for working in than clothes brought from home.
Color is a powerful tool when choosing work uniforms. Most employer’s first inclination is to simply make their employee uniforms a combination of your brightest brand color and black pants, but there’s a better way. Not only do you want to be careful to choose a specific shade that looks good on most people (Yellows and greens are risky for some skin tones), but also consider the influence of subtle color variation between positions. If your managers wear light blue and your associates wear dark blue, or Gardening associates wear green while Sporting associates wear red, customers and employees alike will quickly learn to spot and flag down the person they need based on color identification at a distance.
Modest and Flattering
Both you and your employees want everyone on the team to look modest and professional at work, but not all uniforms make this possible. The reason certain shirt and pant designs have become staples of the average work uniform is because they look equally respectable on everyone. Make sure your uniforms are modest for every shape of employee and reasonably flattering no matter what body type your employees may have. This is one of the best ways to show respect to your employees by making sure they can feel comfortable and well-dressed at work.
One of the biggest (and funniest) challenges in uniform design is the fact that sometimes a customer will be mistaken for staff due to the color and design of your shirt. If your team all wear red polos, it is entirely possible that one customer will demand service from another customer also wearing a red polo. The best way to avoid this is simply to emblazon an obvious logo on the back, pocket, or both of your uniform shirts. This way, even if a mistake is made at a distance, it can quickly be cleared up without dispute.
Finally, if your team members tend to stay with you for more than a year’s time, you have every reason to reward them with a name embroidered or printed on their own uniform shirts. This is a great way to ensure that everyone is always ‘wearing their nametag’ and is a practical way to show employees that they are a valued and permanent member of the team.
Building perfect employee uniforms is a careful balance of comfort, practicality, style, brand identity, and employee identity. Whether you’re building a new uniform or updating an existing style that your employees and customers are already familiar with, we can help you find the right design for your business and team. For more apparel tips or to start planning your new employee uniform, contact us today!