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If you're reading this, chances are you've applied for a number of graduate jobs, you've secured your ideal role - and now you're about to start your first day of work.
Before you start a new job, you'll probably experience an overwhelming range of emotions – from feeling nervous and self-doubting one minute to excited and confident the next. Common worries from candidates include things like:
If there’s one thing we can tell you for sure, it’s that these questions are completely normal, and that at some point everyone has felt the same before their first day of work.
Stepping into the unknown territory of a new job is always going to be daunting, but preparation is key to easing those nerves and helping you to breeze through your first day of work. So to find out how to get ready for a super-successful first day at your new graduate job, read our first day at work tips below.
If you’re worrying about your first day, that means that you’ve successfully made it through at least one round of interviews – so you’ll already know a bit about the company you’re going to be working for. Nonetheless, it’s still a great idea to do some further research around the business before the big day. We’d advise making use of the company’s online assets – so if they have a blog, ‘About Us’ or ‘Meet the Team’ pages, make sure to read through them so you’ve got a good understanding of who they are and what they do.
A major concern about starting a new job is the amount of people you’ll meet in your first week (and the number of names this will require you to remember!) It's a good idea to give yourself a head start by logging on to LinkedIn the night before you start, and looking up the employees of the company you’re going to be working for. Putting names to faces before you’ve even met your new colleagues will not only calm your nerves, but it’ll help you to get networking from the moment you step in the door.
The night before the big day, get together all documentation you need to bring – your National Insurance number, passport, bank account details, proof of your address (like a phone bill), and a P45 if you have one. We’d also recommend taking along a pen and notepad to work – but don’t weigh yourself down with other stationery items, as your work will likely have more than enough.
Pack a bag (optional) and pick out something to wear (compulsory). Choose something comfortable, smart (depending on how formal the dress code is), and weather-appropriate. Having an outfit pre-prepared will stop you wasting time in the morning, when you’re likely to be feeling jittery and the last thing you need is to be worrying about what to wear to a graduate job.
If your journey to work is a route you’ve taken before, double check that there aren’t any disruptions. If you haven’t had time to test-run your commute, don’t panic – check a mapping app like Citymapper or Google Maps, and leave yourself plenty of time in the morning to allow for any issues on the way to work.
On that note, set yourself an alarm for the morning. Of course, it’s important to leave yourself enough time to get up, get ready and get to your new graduate job, and we’d never advise arriving late. But you might be surprised to hear that we wouldn’t recommend being too early, either. If you’ve been told to arrive at 10am, the reason will likely be that your new employer wants to set up your desk and finalise your onboarding before you arrive. Turning up half an hour early won't actually be beneficial to the employer, so to be saf, aim to breeze through the door of your new work with 5-10 minutes to spare.
We all know that without your 8 hours of shut-eye your brain won’t be working at it’s full capacity, and the last thing you want is to be feeling sleepy before the day has even begun. After the stress of the graduate jobs application process, try to get a good night's sleep the night before you start work.
Rise and shine, it’s the first day of your new graduate job! When you wake up, follow your normal morning routine. Eat a big healthy breakfast, so you won’t be thinking about your rumbling stomach when you should be concentrating on your training. We’d recommend leaving your sandwiches at home, though – your new employers might take you for lunch or show you the best spot to pick up a bite to eat – and you wouldn’t want to miss out on valuable bonding time with your new work colleagues!
Although you’ll want to keep your phone on you, don’t risk embarrassment by getting a phone call and disturbing the office on your first day at work. Make sure it's on silent for when you arrive on your first day.
Before you step through the door of your new office, make sure you take a few deep breaths and remember why you’re here. You were hired for this job for a reason, so don’t overthink it and make sure to make the best impression you can!
Your first day of work can be stressful - and of course you'll want to make a good first impression. But if you're wondering what you should be doing on your first day of a new job, follow these first day of work tips to make it a breeze!
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