5 Top Tips Before Starting Your Apprenticeship
So you’ve applied and been successful for the apprenticeship scheme you went for, but it doesn't stop there. What can you do to prepare for the programme itself? How can you make sure you feel fully ready in advance?
Read our top tips to get yourself prepared for your apprenticeship.
1. Get Organised
You’re about to progress into a full-time job role simultaneously with a full-time qualification, and it can be demanding. Therefore, you need to be ready for it; so get organised!
Firstly, learn how to manage your time. Start thinking of ways that have worked for you in the past perhaps when you have balanced school with a part-time job or hobby. Think about some methods you might use when you start the role, such as to-do lists or the Eisenhower Matrix.
Secondly, organise your study equipment. Just like starting a new year at school, you’re starting a new period of time studying. Find or purchase the relevant stationary, books, folders, pens and papers that you require for the qualification you are studying.
For example, if you are doing a degree apprenticeship, you might know that you will have two modules per semester, requiring two folders. Contact your education provider to ask about what software you might need, such as Microsoft Word or certain internet browsers, and download them too. You could also ask them for some recommended reading that you could do ahead of time to save time later. This not only saves time, but also shows a lot of initiative too.
Finally, organise anything you might need for work, such as stationary, a new bag, a laptop with any required software. A lot of things are provided in the modern workplace so double check with your line manager what you need to bring on your first day.
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2. Go Shopping
As well as going out to the shops for some new study and work equipment, you might like to also treat yourself, as a reward for your success with the apprenticeship. Buy a new outfit for your first day, and if you’re working in a corporate environment, buy the correct attire. This is another thing you can check over with your line manager prior to the start date. First impressions count for a lot, and although you’ve already made an impression on your manager, you need to consider the rest of the team too, so make sure you look the part!
3. Do Some Research
You might be thinking that you’ve spent the whole application process researching and now you’re all researched out! This research now is not compulsory but will really help you out when it comes to the job role itself and what you’ll be getting up to as part of it. You should research two things:
The job role - find out what you are going to be doing on a day-to-day basis and start to have a read around about how you can immediately show success in these areas. Chances are, this is your first professional role, so don’t be too worried about being an expert, but try to make an impression that you have a high standards and aims. Therefore, you could look online or on LinkedIn at people that initially started at the same level you are about to enter into and see what they have done with their career.
The company - as well as researching what you will be doing and the impact that you could have personally on the business, you should look into the company itself and the types of things that might influence you, such as: Culture, Values, Typical behaviour or Career progression opportunities.
Researching is really going to help you to see the wider perspective of the job role itself and what contribution this has to the wider company and its values.
4. Travel Considerations
How are you going to get to work every day? How are you going to get to your training provider every day? Whether you are driving, walking, cycling or taking some form of public transport, you need to consider both the logistics of how you’ll get there every day and the cost that is incurred. If you are getting the train every day, what discounts can you get? Is it cheaper to purchase the tickets daily or get an annual pass? These are all the questions you need to ask yourself before you start the job.
As well as the how and the how much, you need to consider the time and how early you’ll need to leave every morning to ensure that you make it to work on time. Again, ask what your working hours will be and then work backwards from there.
5. Financial Management
Finally, something that you may have never done before, but something that you’ll definitely have to do is manage your finances. You will now know what your salary/ wage is and can therefore work out what you will ‘take home’ after tax deductions. Once you have this amount, you need to consider what expenses you will have along with this new role. For example, lunch money and travel costs, as well as any other costs you currently have such as petrol, car insurance and memberships or subscriptions, like the gym or Spotify.
Once you have your inflows and outflows, you can create a simple budget on a piece of paper or a spreadsheet, to work out what you have left over. You can then either save it or spend it, that’s your money!
Congratulations on your success with the apprenticeship programme and take on these tips to ensure you’re fully prepared.