How To Ace Your First Day At A New Job

You've got your dream gig, now here's how to make a deadly first impression.

First day at a new job

You did it! You aced your CV, wowed at the interview and cinched your dream job. You go girl! Now there’s just one little hurdle to overcome and it’s the daunting first day in your new role. Nervous? You shouldn’t be. We spoke to Careers Consultant Carmel Morrissey to find out how you can make the best first impression.

Be on time

It may sound like a fairly obvious piece of advice, but if you aren’t careful running late on your first day can be surprisingly easy. “Practice the route to the office a couple of times in rush hour traffic,” suggests Carmel. “While you may have already been to the office on various occasions during the interview process it may not have been during peak times. Ensure that you know how long you need to get there and that you have a contingency plan if public transport is delayed. Set your alarm for a little earlier than usual too so you have plenty of time to get ready without rushing and aim to arrive around 10 minutes early.” Roger that.

Come prepared

It’s likely that you’ll need more than a winning smile and a firm handshake on day one. “Do your research in advance,” says Carmel. “What documents do HR need you to bring with you to set you up on the system for ID purposes and payroll etc. Do you need to bring Passport photos, ID, do you know your PPS number? What is the dress code?” she asks. A notepad and pen won’t go amiss either.

Don’t be shy

Stepping into a new environment with lots of new faces can be intimidating but it’s important to take the initiative and say hello. “Introduce yourself when the opportunities arise,” Carmel advises. “Be aware that your new colleagues may ask you about your previous employment and try to project enthusiasm and positivity.” Been invited to lunch? Don’t turn down that invitation; “building rapport early on is important,” reminds Carmel.

Be professional

Carmel’s top tip? Bring a note pad and pen with you as you’re likely to experience information overload on day one. “Write notes, jot down passwords and colleagues names,” she suggests. “This will prevent you having to ask for this information a second time. It will also help you build working relationships quickly and effectively.”

Don’t stay late

Sure it’s mighty tempting to stay passed the 9-5; you want to make a good impression after all, but Carmel says on your first day working late is a no-no. “Go home and take some time to absorb and reflect on your first day,” she recommends. “Don’t panic about any steep learning curves ahead; remember it can take up to 90 days to become competent in a new role.”

Our advice? Take each day as it comes and you’ll be a pro in your new job in no time. Best of luck!