Your first job role after University can come as a bit of a shock to the system. Gone are the days of sitting back in lectures in your oversized hoodie, putting off those essays until your deadlines are looming! All of a sudden you are thrown into a 9-5 (that’s if you’re lucky), having to suit up everyday and actually know what you are doing! Fear not, your graduate role is the first step to starting your career so read our 8 steps to settle into your graduate job to make sure you get off to the best possible start!
- Understand everyone’s role in the company / team
Obviously this is a difficult one if your company employs 1000 people, but try to learn the names and job roles of everyone you will be working with so you can gain an understanding of how you fit into the team. Picking up names doesn’t come easily to everyone so make sure you make plenty of notes to avoid the embarrassing situation of forgetting your colleagues name two weeks into the job!
- Understand your job description
You may have read the job description a million times in the run up to your job interview but do you really understand what you will be doing on a day to day basis? Make sure you read through your responsibilities and discuss with a manager throughout your training to ensure you are completing your tasks correctly and moving along the right path!
- Ask plenty of questions – but take notes!
Questions to your colleagues / manager are always welcome during your period of training, but make sure you are remembering the answers and not repeating yourself. You need to demonstrate that you are learning and taking a proactive approach to your job rather than constantly asking for help. The trusty notepad will help here, at the end of each day type up your notes to help you remember what you have learnt and so you can file any useful information away so it’s easy to find when you need it!
- Get to grips with the company culture
This is something you can’t always pick up at the research / interview phase. Try and find out how the company / colleagues operate in and out of the office so you can settle into the team easily. This can be anything from making sure you don’t use someone else’s mug for your coffee (a dangerous thing to do in any office environment) to going for beers after work on a Friday!
- Be on time and dress the part
Want to stick out like a sore thumb? Turn up late and look scruffy. Want to fit in and be liked by your boss and colleagues? Be at your desk ready at your contracted start time and make an effort with your appearance!
- Be sociable
You spend so much of your time in work (especially if you are a recruiter) so it is inevitable you will become friends with your colleagues. Don’t be afraid to speak up and get to know people in the office as well as participate in social outings to get to know people better!
- Set personal targets
More often than not you will be given a strict training regime in your graduate role, but if this isn’t the case try and structure your workload and set personal targets to ensure you stay on track with your new role.
- Catch up with your manager
Try and have regular catch ups with your manager so you can discuss how you are progressing, what areas you are unsure of within your job role and how you can improve. This will not only help you bed into the role quicker but it demonstrates to your boss that you are hardworking and keen to do well within the company!
Sophie Heaton (Digital Campaign Manager)