Standards of Dress

TO: All ITECS Employees
FROM: Keith Boswell, Director of ITECS
SUBJECT: Standards of Dress for ITECS

ITECS is first and foremost a customer service-oriented organization. Members of ITECS interact with faculty, staff and students on a daily basis. Many of these interactions come at a time of stress for our customers. When dealing with these stressed-out customers a professional demeanor, both in action and in appearance, helps to increase the customer’s confidence that they are being helped by someone who knows what they are doing. Image is a small part of the total ITECS employee “package” but it is an important component of the overall effort of establishing and maintaining ITECS as an organization of professionals in the minds of our customers. To that end this memo establishes a set of minimum standards of dress for ITECS employees.

These standards apply to EPA and SPA employees occupying a position that appears in the ITECS organization chart as well as biweekly and student employees who are hired and supervised by other ITECS employees. They are in effect as of July 1, 2006.

The following paragraphs outline the minimum standards that I expect each ITECS employee to adhere to.

  1. The basic rule of thumb is that dress should be appropriate for the environment in which we work. For all of ITECS that environment can be defined as an indoor, climate-controlled, office environment.
  2. In general, athletic attire, T-shirts, shorts, flip-flops, etc. are not appropriate for our environment. Exceptions should be made for persons going to or coming back from working out or actively participating in athletic events. During the period between spring graduation day and the first day of fall classes, shorts will be allowed. Shorts should be of casual style (Bermuda or similar) and not athletic or running shorts.
  3. Clothing with logos or slogans should be in good taste, professional in appearance and not offensive to the general public or coworkers. Any item that creates a distraction or impairs one’s ability to carry out his or her job functions is inappropriate.
  4. Clothing should be clean and free from rips, tears and holes.
  5. Our work environment often includes working on computers and other electronic devices and carrying moderately heavy items. If your position requires you to work on or carry such equipment you should choose clothing, accessories and shoes that do not contribute to the creation of a safety hazard.

Managers are responsible for enforcing these standards and are expected and encouraged to apply common sense to such enforcement. For example, if employees are to be engaged in manual labor such as unloading and setting up an entire lab’s worth of computers, the wearing of shorts and T-shirts may be entirely appropriate during that activity. Employees who know they will be engaged in work such as cleaning out a storeroom or crawling under desks to run cable may want to wear clothing they don’t mind getting dirty. In cases such as these the manager must make the decision and let everyone know that such exceptions are allowed and encouraged.

Employees who are inappropriately dressed may be asked to change clothing and any time consumed in doing so must be accounted for as time away from work.

Anyone with concerns or questions about these standards is encouraged to talk to their manager or to me about them.