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Thread: Professional dress in NZ

  1. #1
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    Sep 2012
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    Default Professional dress in NZ

    I have used the search function but could not find much about professional attire posted. I have read that life is more relaxed in New Zealand, and some anecdotes that kids don't wear shoes until they are of school age, but I am not clear about professional dress.

    I will be working as a doctor for one of the major city's District Health Boards. Can anyone give me a sense of what would be expected? ie: suit, shirt and tie, smart casual, shirt and tidy jeans, etc.

    Thanks in advance.

  2. #2
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    Mar 2007
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    I have met physicians at the local hospital that wear polo t shirts and smart jeans. I have been in NZ for eight years now and have not worn a tie since my very first week of work.

  3. #3
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    Sep 2006
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    Our Dr wears a button up shirt and slacks. He usually has his sleeves rolled up.
    Steve wears the same at work; he's an IT guy at an insurance company. He did wear a full suit and tie for interviews.

  4. #4
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    In IT, if a guy comes to work in a suit and tie, they'll get one of two questions. Either "prosecution or defence?" (meaning he looks like he's going to court and wants to make a good impression) or "when's the interview?" and a former colleague of mine did just that recently. He got the job, too!

    To a recent interview I wore a crushed velvet black dress that came above the knee (but showed zero cleavage) and knee-high black boots with black tights, and a crushed velvet long-sleeved purple overcoat. I got the job, too!

  5. #5
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    Oh, and my doc is always in a polo shirt and jeans.

  6. #6
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    May 2012
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    and what is the official dress code in corporate culture.. that is generally followed in NZ..

  7. #7
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    Aug 2010
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    Auckland, NZ
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    just my $0.02 worth but... irrespective of dress code when working my recommendation would always be suit at interview.

    regarding lucky's question about the official dress code in corporate culture, my experience is that it is very similar to the UK. Most of the time it is suit, no tie. I work as a consultant (management, not medical) and I wear a suit every day (even Friday) and tie when client facing unless they are a particularly informal organisation.

    It does not really matter what someone's doctor wears, or what the IT guy wears.... one of my GP's in the UK used to wear a poloshirt, tatoo and all, likewise I worked in IT and some people in the City (London) wore suits and tie. It is fairly easy to work out quickly what the "norm" is for your particular workplace - when you are in for an interview, have a look around, pretty easy to see if people tend to wear suit/tie or jeans/polo but at the end of the day, wear what is comfortable.

  8. #8
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    Sep 2012
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    Thanks to everyone for your feedback. My interview was by telephone and I think I was wearing pyjamas at the time. It's more the day to day stuff I was thinking about. I appreciate that comfort is important, and part of comfort is understanding convention. I'm not there to make a fashion statement. Cheers.

  9. #9
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    Jan 2012
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    Wellington, New Zealand
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    It is hard to judge isn't it. I had my interviews by telephone too so I've never met any of the people I will be working with or seen the office, so I don't really know. I'm moving from a charity where there is absolutely no dress code, to the civil service. I decided to smarten up my work wardrobe in advance of getting to NZ as I won't have much time when I land and don't want to spend my first weekend shopping. I've gone for smart office clothes that can be worn with a jacket or a cardigan. I did ask someone I know in the civil service in NZ and he said that it's just normal smart office attire, like the UK (he moved last year).

    I would say that the same as you wear here will be fine. Just make sure you've got a bit of flexibility in your wardrobe to be a bit smarter or a bit more casual depending on how it is when you start. Also, everyone looks smarter on their first day than they do the rest of the time.

  10. #10
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    Biz cas: decent pants and open collar dress shirt or polo.

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