Starting a new job in the pandemic as a young person – what I’ve learned

Starting a new role during the pandemic may feel exciting and challenging. These tips from our wonderful Volunteer Youth Ambassador Alina can help.

It is often nerve-wracking to start a new job – especially if you have been out of work for some time or you are beginning employment for the first time. Starting a new job in the pandemic is even more so! I’d like to share my own experience from a young person’s perspective. It could help you to hear how expectations and daily tasks may differ due to remote working and the increased use of online meetings for communication.

Build a feeling of connection with your team

As your manager and other team members may be remote working or placed in a socially distanced environment, your team’s introductions can take longer to build due to access or clashes within their schedule. However, this should not stop you from being visible to your team.

Make sure to introduce yourself to your team and take some time during break or lunch to familiarise yourself with your department’s members and what your team may do on a day-to-day basis. It is vital to be proactive in team meetings as this can help you find opportunities to network and build confidence in your role.

Ask questions

Asking questions is an integral part of starting your work, especially to get payroll or IT issues in time. Asking insightful and probing questions can also help you understand your role and the daily operations within your department and identify the issues within your sector, which can help you build solutions in the future.

Additionally, you can also ask your line manager questions, which can help to understand your role from a more holistic perspective and what types of challenges you may face within your position.

It’s also important to ask questions about the changes to the COVID-19 guidelines, as this can affect your working location arrangements or other technical operations within your role.

Upskill your digital skills

It is vital to refresh your digital skills, especially when using video calling software such as Zoom or Microsoft Teams and other forms of specialist software required by your company for daily use, especially when remote working. If your company provides a training session dedicated to digital skills, I would highly recommend that you take these sessions as this will allow you to become accustomed to the software packages. Additionally, this will help you understand why there are used and how to resolve any technical issues you may encounter during your work.

Get familiar with your role

It is crucial to familiarise yourself with your new role as you know what your day-to-day expectations and work may look like. This is especially important if you are entering the workforce for the first time after leaving school, college or university. This can involve revisiting your job description and matching it with your day-to-day role. However, there will be differences as your position may be adapted due to COVID-19, which may mean that customer-facing or client-facing operations may be done virtually or over the phone. Other procedures may require the use of software or timing adjustments.

Good luck in your new role!

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For more information, please email info@youthemployment.org.uk or call 01536 513388.

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