Moncton — A Hub City woman went to an employment interview today for a local IT firm wearing an oversized hoodie and pajama pants she purchased at Walmart eight years ago — and she landed the job.
Tamara Osborne, 31, said she normally wears her nice leggings when leaving her apartment, but this morning just “couldn’t be bothered with fashion.”
“My PJs were a bit damp on the bottom because I wore them out running errands on the weekend,” explained Osborne. “They had some wrinkles and caked-on mud but otherwise looked clean enough. I don’t think anyone’s expecting perfection.”
The head of human resources at CyberVate Digital said it’s not unusual for a candidate to turn up to a formal panel interview wearing flannel Winnie the Pooh pajamas, Looney Tunes crew-neck sweatshirts and even Crocs.
“We used to rule these people out right away,” said Linda MacKnight of HR. “Our thinking was, ‘If someone can’t dress professionally even for the initial interview, they won’t act professionally in the workplace,’ but as time went on, we realized we’d be missing out on some extremely qualified candidates if we judged them based on something as trivial as fashion.
“And besides, we hardly have anyone show up wearing real clothes anymore, so really, Tamara’s clothing choices make her a good fit for our company,” added MacKnight, who was herself wearing a pair of tribal-print leggings with a hole above one knee, a graphic tee with “YOLO” emblazoned across the chest and dangly plastic earrings from Claire’s. “It’s just not feasible to ask such a thing of Monctonians, I guess.”
The Manatee spoke with Walmart Canada, who said they are considering rolling out a line of “professional” pajamas and accessories.
“It’ll be for the Monctonian on the go, whose busy lifestyle doesn’t include time for washing, drying, folding, ironing or hanging up clothes,” explained a representative over the phone. “Accessories will include business-casual slippers, those eye-pillow things in muted colours appropriate for the office, and of course, terry-cloth bathrobes that flatter any figure — perfect for a high-powered meeting with company execs.”
Osborne starts her new job on Monday. “It’s nice because I’ll have a few days to update my wardrobe,” said the IT professional. “I’ve been meaning to check if Walmart has any cute nighties that I can wear on my first day, under whatever hoodie is the least food-stained. Lord knows I’m not putting a bra on.”