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Men's and Women's Workwear - US - July 2013

“Changing workplace dynamics have caused a shift in the market for traditional workwear. No longer is formal attire required in many offices and dress codes are becoming less common. Casual wear is not only acceptable, but has become the norm in many workplaces, resulting in decreased demand for traditional business attire. Retailers need to rethink the definition of workwear in order to encourage sales in this category.”

– Ali Lipson, Senior Retail & Apparel Analyst

Some questions answered in this report include:

  • What can encourage consumers to buy workwear?
  • Where do people buy work clothing?
  • Do consumers wear the same clothing for work and non-work?

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Table of contents

  1. Scope and Themes

    • What you need to know
      • Definition
        • Data sources
          • Consumer survey data
            • Advertising creative
              • Abbreviations and terms
                • Abbreviations
                  • Terms
                  • Executive Summary

                      • Market factors
                        • Employment levels in relation to the workwear market
                          • Figure 1: U.S. Unemployment and underemployment rates, January 2010- May 2013
                        • Changes in workplace environments impact the category
                          • The consumer
                            • Business casual most commonly worn by the employed
                              • Figure 2: Types of clothing most often worn to work, by gender, March 2013
                            • Work and non-work wardrobes kept separate
                              • Figure 3: Self-description of work wardrobe, March 2013
                            • Value department stores primary destination for workwear
                              • Figure 4: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes, March 2013
                            • Comfort most important when selecting workwear
                              • Figure 5: Key important attributes when shopping for work clothes, March 2013
                            • Sales and special offers appeal to shoppers when buying work clothes
                              • Figure 6: Attitudes to work clothes, March 2013
                            • What we think
                            • Issues and Insights

                                • Casualization of workplaces leaves little demand for formal business attire
                                  • The issues
                                    • The implications
                                      • What can encourage consumers to buy workwear?
                                        • The issues
                                          • The implications
                                            • Where do people buy work clothing?
                                              • The issues
                                                • The implications
                                                  • Do consumers wear the same clothing for work and non-work?
                                                    • The issues
                                                      • The implications
                                                      • Trend Application

                                                          • Inspire Trend: Many Mes
                                                            • Inspire Trend: Life – An Informal Affair
                                                              • Mintel Futures: Generation Next
                                                              • Market Drivers

                                                                • Key points
                                                                  • Employment levels impact the market for workwear
                                                                    • Figure 7: U.S. unemployment and underemployment rates, January 2010-May 2013
                                                                  • Shifts in workplace dynamics
                                                                    • Figure 8: Employed persons working at home, by full- and part-time status and gender, 2011 annual averages
                                                                  • Rise in online and mobile shopping makes buying workwear easier, more convenient
                                                                    • Impact of obesity
                                                                    • Retailer Overview

                                                                        • Specialty stores
                                                                          • Ann, Inc. – Ann Taylor and LOFT
                                                                            • Brooks Brothers
                                                                              • Express, Inc.
                                                                                • Gap Inc. – Gap, Banana Republic
                                                                                  • J. Crew
                                                                                    • Jos. A. Bank
                                                                                      • Lands’ End
                                                                                        • New York & Company
                                                                                          • The Limited
                                                                                            • Market threats and opportunities for specialty stores
                                                                                              • Department stores
                                                                                                • Macy’s, Inc. (incl. Bloomingdale’s)
                                                                                                  • Nordstrom
                                                                                                    • Kohl’s
                                                                                                      • JCPenney
                                                                                                        • Sears
                                                                                                          • Market threats and opportunities for department stores
                                                                                                            • Mass merchandisers
                                                                                                              • Walmart
                                                                                                                • Target
                                                                                                                  • Kmart
                                                                                                                    • Market threats and opportunities for mass merchandisers
                                                                                                                      • Discount stores
                                                                                                                        • TJX Companies – T.J. Maxx and Marshalls
                                                                                                                          • Market threats and opportunities for discount stores
                                                                                                                          • Innovations and Innovators

                                                                                                                            • Celebrity collections popping up in workwear
                                                                                                                              • Custom, tailored offerings
                                                                                                                                • FreshNeck rents accessories to men
                                                                                                                                • Marketing Strategies

                                                                                                                                  • Overview
                                                                                                                                    • Strategy: Focus on price
                                                                                                                                      • Jos A. Bank
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 9: Jos A. Bank TV ad, “Suit statement,” March 2013
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 10: Jos A. Bank TV ad, “Tie pants,” April 2013
                                                                                                                                      • The Limited
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 11: The Limited email ad, “50% off original ticket prices,” June 2013
                                                                                                                                      • Target
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 12: Target email ad, “increasing discounts”, June 2013
                                                                                                                                      • Banana Republic
                                                                                                                                        • Figure 13: Banana Republic email ad, “we love Wednesdays,” June 2013
                                                                                                                                      • Strategy: Focus on fashion
                                                                                                                                        • Banana Republic
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 14: Banana Republic Milly Collection Gilt City Chicago deal, June 2013
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 15: Banana Republic Milly Collection print ad as seen in InStyle Magazine, June 2013
                                                                                                                                        • Brooks Brothers
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 16: Brooks Brothers TV ad, “Sheep sing Jingle Bells,” December 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Express
                                                                                                                                          • Figure 17: Express TV ad, “New Styles,” September 2012
                                                                                                                                        • Strategy: Exclusive access
                                                                                                                                          • Ann Taylor
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 18: Ann Taylor email ad, “You’re on the list,” June 2013
                                                                                                                                          • Gap/Banana Republic
                                                                                                                                            • Figure 19: Banana Republic email ad for reserve in store service, June 2013
                                                                                                                                        • Primary Workplace Environment and Dress Code

                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                            • Women more likely than men to work in offices, more than half of all follow dress code
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 20: Primary workplace environment and presence of dress code, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                            • Full-time workers primarily employed in offices
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 21: Primary workplace environment and presence of dress code, by employment, March 2013
                                                                                                                                            • Those living in higher-income households likely to be corporate professionals
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 22: Primary workplace environment and presence of dress code, by age and household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                            • Not all offices enforce a dress code
                                                                                                                                              • Figure 23: Primary workplace environment by presence of dress code, March 2013
                                                                                                                                          • Type of Workwear Worn Most Often

                                                                                                                                            • Key points
                                                                                                                                              • Items worn
                                                                                                                                                • Business casual worn most often by employees
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 24: Types of clothing most often worn to work, by gender, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 25: Types of clothing most often worn to work, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                • Higher income households wear business casual attire most often
                                                                                                                                                  • Figure 26: Types of clothing most often worn to work, by household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                • Items purchased
                                                                                                                                                  • Older men most likely to purchase shirts, pants, and suits
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 27: Men's apparel purchases, by age, October 2011-November 2012
                                                                                                                                                  • Younger women more likely than older ladies to purchase dresses, skirts
                                                                                                                                                    • Figure 28: Women's apparel purchases, by age, October 2011-November 2012
                                                                                                                                                • Best Way to Describe Own Work Wardrobe

                                                                                                                                                  • Key points
                                                                                                                                                    • Work and non-work wardrobes kept separate
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 29: Self-description of work wardrobe, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                    • Highest income earners have two wardrobes – work and non-work
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 30: Self-description of work wardrobe, by household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                    • Millennials likely to have separate work and non-work clothing
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 31: Self-description of work wardrobe, Millennials vs. non-Millennials, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                    • Department stores shoppers likely to have separate wardrobes for work and non-work
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 32: Self-description of work wardrobe, by types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 33: Self-description of work wardrobe, by types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online, March 2013 (continued)
                                                                                                                                                  • Types of Retailers Shopped for Workwear

                                                                                                                                                    • Key points
                                                                                                                                                      • Most shop at value department stores for workwear
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 34: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes, in-store vs. online, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                      • Discount stores preferred by women, online retailers favored among young adults
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 35: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                      • Value department stores preferred by those in all household income groups
                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 36: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online, by household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                    • Importance of Key Clothing Attributes When Buying Work Clothing

                                                                                                                                                      • Key points
                                                                                                                                                        • Most seek comfort, younger adults seek style and fashion
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 37: Key attributes sought in work clothes, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                        • High-income households seek style, price more important to lower-income households
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 38: Key attributes sought in work clothes, by household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                        • Millennials want fashionable, stylish work clothes
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 39: Key attributes sought in work clothes, Millennials vs. non-Millennials, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                        • Upscale department store, specialty store shoppers seek quality clothing
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 40: Key attributes sought in work clothes, by types of retailers shopped for work clothes – in-store or online, March 2013(Part 1)
                                                                                                                                                          • Figure 41: Key attributes sought in work clothes, by Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – in-store or online, March 2013 (Part 2)
                                                                                                                                                      • Attitudes Toward Work Clothing

                                                                                                                                                        • Key points
                                                                                                                                                          • Sales and special offers appeal to shoppers when buying work clothes
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 42: Agreement with attitudes to work clothes, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                          • High-income earners update clothing frequently, those with lower household incomes accessorize for a fresh look
                                                                                                                                                            • Figure 43: Agreement with attitudes to work clothes, by household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                        • Impact of Race and Hispanic Origin

                                                                                                                                                          • Key points
                                                                                                                                                            • Most work in offices, Hispanics and blacks more likely to work in retail/hotel/restaurant/bar environments
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 44: Primary workplace environment and presence of dress code, by race/Hispanic origin, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                            • Hispanics more likely to wear casual attire, blacks wear uniforms when working
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 45: Types of clothing most often worn to work, by race/Hispanic origin, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                            • Hispanics have separate work and non-work clothing
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 46: Self-description of work wardrobe, by race/Hispanic origin, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                            • Value department stores favored by all, particularly Hispanics
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 47: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online, by race/Hispanic origin, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                            • Hispanics seek trendy, brand-name workwear
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 48: Key attributes sought in work clothes, Hispanic vs. non-Hispanic, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 49: Attitudes/opinions toward apparel, by race/Hispanic origin, October 2011-November 2012
                                                                                                                                                          • Cluster Analysis

                                                                                                                                                              • Figure 50: Target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                            • Stylish Shoppers
                                                                                                                                                              • Demographics
                                                                                                                                                                • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                                                  • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                                                    • Casual Dressers
                                                                                                                                                                      • Demographics
                                                                                                                                                                        • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                                                          • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                                                            • Dress to Impress
                                                                                                                                                                              • Demographics
                                                                                                                                                                                • Characteristics
                                                                                                                                                                                  • Opportunity
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Cluster characteristics tables
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 51: Primary workplace environment and presence of dress code, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 52: Types of clothing most often worn to work, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 53: Types of clothing also worn to work, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 54: Self-description of work wardrobe, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 55: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 56: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In store, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 57: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – Online, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 58: Key attributes sought in work clothes, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 59: Agreement with attitudes to work clothes, by target clusters, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Cluster demographics table
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Figure 60: Target clusters, by demographics, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Cluster methodology
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Other Useful Consumer Tables

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Primary workplace environment and dress code
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 61: Primary workplace environment and presence of dress code, by primary workplace environment, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 62: Presence of dress code, by primary workplace environment, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 63: Presence of dress code, by primary workplace environment, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Types of workwear worn most often
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 64: Types of clothing most often worn to work, by employment, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 65: Types of clothing most often worn to work, by generations, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Type of workwear also worn
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 66: Types of clothing also worn to work, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 67: Types of clothing also worn to work, by household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 68: Types of clothing also worn to work, by generation, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 69: Types of clothing also worn to work, by age and household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 70: Types of clothing also worn to work, by primary workplace environment, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 71: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online, by generation, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 72: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store or online, by self-description of work wardrobe, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 73: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 74: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – In-store, by household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 75: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – in-store, by generation, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – Online
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 76: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – Online, by gender and age, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 77: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – Online, by household income, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 78: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – Online, by Hispanic origin, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 79: Types of retailers shopped for work clothes – Online, by generation, March 2013
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Attitudes toward apparel
                                                                                                                                                                                        • Figure 80: Attitudes/opinions toward apparel, by gender and age, October 2011-November 2012
                                                                                                                                                                                    • Appendix – Trade Associations

                                                                                                                                                                                      Companies Covered

                                                                                                                                                                                      • Adidas (USA)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • American Apparel & Footwear Association (AAFA)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • AnnTaylor Inc
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Apple, Inc
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Banana Republic
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Bloomingdale's
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Burberry (USA)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Calvin Klein, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Gap (USA)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Giorgio Armani S.p.A.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Haggar Corp.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Hugo Boss
                                                                                                                                                                                      • J C Penney Company, Inc
                                                                                                                                                                                      • J. Crew Group, Inc
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Kenneth Cole Productions, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Kmart Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Kohl's Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Limited Brands Inc
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Liz Claiborne Inc
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Macy's, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Missoni S.p.A
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Mossimo, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Narciso Rodriguez
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Neiman Marcus (retail stores)
                                                                                                                                                                                      • New York & Company Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Nordstrom
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Old Navy
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Polo Ralph Lauren Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                      • SAM's Club
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Sears Holdings Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Skechers USA Inc
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Sun Capital Partners, Inc.
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Target Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Ted Baker
                                                                                                                                                                                      • The TJX Companies
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Timex Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Tommy Hilfiger Corporation
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Topman old
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Topshop old
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Vera Wang
                                                                                                                                                                                      • Walmart Stores (USA)

                                                                                                                                                                                      Men's and Women's Workwear - US - July 2013

                                                                                                                                                                                      £3,199.84 (Excl.Tax)