Tattoos In The Workplace: Yay Or Nay?

A hot topic circulating the web these days is the acceptance of tattoos in the workplace. Certain professions, mostly those which embody personal expression, have moved into a complete acceptance of tattoos.

However, more traditional business such as law and government tend to stand with their older values and views, making it difficult to acquire a position with large scale, noticeable body art. These different outlooks seem to stem from a demographic separation between the Baby Boomer Generations and the Generation X era.

There seems to be two direct points of view for this controversy currently floating about.?The first group is the?younger generation that has grown up with more focus on personal expression.?The second group is the older generation that has a more conservative background. The younger generations currently seeking employment argue that their tattoos are a personal expression of art and that they do not represent their work ethic or abilities. A 30-something, tattooed, anonymous professional stated during an interview:

I don’t think that people should be judged on their appearance. If they are qualified for the job then that should be the deciding factor.

The ever growing assembly of people who are in support of work place tattoos find it unjust and discriminatory to be judged based off tattoos they choose to have. There is currently no federal regulation toward this type of discrimination.

Those born during the Baby Boomer generation, alongside those working in more conservative roles, find tattoos in the workplace to be inappropriate and unprofessional. Even for those working in these positions, with unbiased views on the issue, often find themselves constrained when hiring due to company policy that has not been reworked in decades. These regulations and thoughts on tattoos also influence the possibility of moving up in careers as well. A survey conducted by CareerBuilder shows that those with tattoos are 31 percent less likely to receive a promotion in a company.?From a customer service standpoint these companies are required to appeal to all ages and types of people, leaving them no choice but to keep their employees in a more conservative visual standpoint.

As time goes by and our younger generations grow into the larger, managerial positions; the stigmas associated with tattoos will begin to fade. Overtime we will see more and more companies opening their positions to those with visible body art, but for now HR departments suggest covering up tattoos and removing piercings when interviewing for a position.

edited by Kyla B.

I am a 30 something writer passionate about politics, the environment, human rights and pretty much everything that effects our everyday life. To stay on top of the topics I discuss, like and follow me at and .


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