Transitioning into the workforce

Taking your first steps into the workforce can be frightening. As a young professional, you want to make a great first impression and leave your mark. There are many ways that you can make a seamless transition into the real world. Creating a relationship with your company’s Human Resources department is a great way to ensure your career will stay on track. Let’s discuss some of the best ways to enter the workforce with confidence, and some of the techniques HR can use to aid you along the way.

1. Establish Your Brand

Establishing your brand is an essential part of becoming successful. Your reputation defines you, so be sure to have a good one! It is imperative that you meet deadlines and deliver on your commitments. Besides strengthening your reputation, being a dependable colleague can also eventually lead to promotions.

2. Be a Lifelong Learner

Never pass up chances to learn. Seminars, summits, and industry conferences are excellent ways to increase your knowledge, as is seeking out new information in less-formal ways. If an opportunity arises, always take it! It might also benefit you to find a colleague to shadow who has experience to share; if you make a good connection, you could even ask him or her to serve as your official mentor.

3. Maintain Work-Life Balance

According to an article on, “There is an irrefutable correlation between personal and professional lives. Stress in one area bleeds out to stress in other parts of life. A study from Oregon University found that a happy home life begets happiness and productivity in the workplace as well. If you want to be a happy person, you need happiness in all areas of your life. This happiness stems from living a work-life balance that aligns your values and priorities appropriately.”

4. Expand Your External and Internal Networks

Networking is a crucial part of being a successful professional. It is very important to maintain contacts outside of work. This could be friends, alumni groups, recreational sports teams, or nonprofit groups. If you ever find yourself without a job, your next job will likely come from one of your contacts, so be sure to keep those relationships alive!

Your company’s Human Resources department can also support your career growth by assisting employees with networking within the company. Employees who aren’t connected with anyone else at their job might feel disengaged—and disengaged employees tends to underperform, so it’s important for HR to help foster connections between people in the workplace.

5. Plan for Your Future

Not only should you be considering how to be successful in your job, but you should also think about retirement and begin planning for it as soon as possible. The earlier you can start saving towards retirement, the better off you’ll be. Using an automatic savings tool is a great way to make sure you are setting aside money to secure your financial future. You should also sit down with your Human Resources department and discuss 401k-matching contributions, if your company offers this perk.

6. Remember to Utilize HR

The Human Resources department can play a vital role in your career success. In addition to filling many other job functions, Human Resources also has the crucial role of lining up employees’ skills and abilities with appropriate roles within the company. Finding positions that correctly align with employees’ skills can play a critical role in their success going forward. As needed, Human Resources can assist you in creating an updated resume. This might sound counterintuitive, since HR would want you to remain within the company. However, most people who are applying for promotions still need to provide a cover letter and an updated resume. You can rely on HR to help you update your resume and cover letter to ensure you have the best chance of receiving your desired promotion.

HR can also assist you with alleviating stress and creating better work-life balance, which was mentioned above. Personal problems can affect your work in a very serious way, so HR will want to lend a hand. HR will listen to your issue and can often recommend resources that can help you overcome your personal challenges. In addition, HR can often create a short-term accommodation for you that can help alleviate some of your stress in the workplace.

According to Totaljobs, “Achieving that elusive work-life balance is a struggle for most of us. However, most bosses recognise that there is a ‘you’ beyond the four walls of the office, and understand that it’s in their best interest to have a healthy, happy workforce. As such, most companies have policies in place to help you achieve a healthy balance and can advise you on childcare and flexible working schemes. Some companies actively promote a healthy attitude to work, too, with leisure activities planned outside of 9-5 and deals with local gyms and healthcare providers. Some also have concession schemes with local shops, discounts on food, travel and even mobile phones and computers.”

Following the 6 Tips outlined above can make your transition into the workforce much easier. And remember, whether you are struggling or simply looking for advice, HR is there to assist you with your career planning and your future within the company. They are there to support you! Be sure to take advantage of your company’s HR department whenever you need.



Content written by Guest Author: Kristen Baker

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Guest Author
This post was submitted by a CMOE Guest Author. CMOE guest authors are carefully selected industry experts, researchers, writers, and editors with an extensive experience and a deep passion for leadership development, human capital performance, and other specialty areas. Each guest author is uniquely selected for the topic or skills areas that they are focused on. All posts are peer reviewed by CMOE.

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