Organising & planning corporate #clothing #procurement

The team that is directly involved in the rolling out of corporate uniforms across an organisation ought to be kept as small as possible. Ideally, each section of the business should be represented by one individual. It must also be remembered that contractors or other third party organisations involved in service delivery may additionally be affected by the implementation or changing of the company staff uniforms. In such circumstances, these outside agencies will need representation. The implementation team would probably decide on an individual such as project manager who would be responsible for coordinating the whole corporate clothing effort. Overall, a team that is responsible for planning and organising corporate clothing would need to consider the following questions:

  • How much funding is available?
  • Why is the dress code being implemented in the first place?
  • What is the expected timescale for completion?
  • Which employees are going to affected?

The last point requires further explanation and its importance and scope will depend on what is occurring within the business.

The Extent of The Policy

This refers to which employees will be required to wear the corporate uniforms. It needs to address whether not employees of different grades or responsibilities have to wear the same staff uniforms or not. From here, the number of workers who need the proverbial variation on a theme, in terms of what is both practical, safe and comfortable can be ascertained. It would be the responsibility of the planning team to report back to the project manager any unforeseen issues, which can then be relayed to the executive and employee representatives. Furthermore, if the staff clothing is to be manufactured and procured externally, then regular communication with corporate clothing suppliers must be maintained. As a corollary, any seasonal variations in both numbers of employees and the conditions in which they are working have to be integrated into the business wear policy. For example, will seasonal or temporary workers need to purchase their work wear or do they assume responsibility for it and only pay for the clothing if it is damaged or lost. Perhaps the workplace is a shop floor, in which case it needs to be determined at the outset if there is to be a winter and summer staff uniform, or not.

Assessing the Variables

Within the above context (which itself will vary according to circumstances), it is crucial to ascertain how many corporate uniforms are to be allocated to each employee. An ideal for a given time of year could be three sets of clothing, where one is being worn, one is cleaned and ready for wearing and the other is being laundered. Intertwined with this may be a necessity for a pool of specific workwear items such as heavy duty coats or safety boots, which are held on company premises and signed for as required by employees. Here it would be necessary to have a track and trace system in place. Finally, the expected life span of each garment would need to be assessed and from here employees would reasonably expect that if the equipment was unsafe that it would be replaced by the employer.

Clearly, there is no one size fits all when it comes to developing a corporate uniform policy. It would be expected that different employees would wear different forms of acceptable business wear depending on their responsibilities within the organisation.