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Five Steps to Facilitate the Transition from University Student to Young Professional

Five Steps to Facilitate the Transition from University Student to Young Professional

Posted on 27/05/2021 by Tully Matthews

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Making the transition from university studies to the professional working world is an exciting but often daunting experience. Last year, I completed my Bachelor’s Degree in Business & Human Resource Management, and concluded working in the hospitality industry after 8 years. In the months leading up to my final exams, I started feeling overwhelmed with the pressure of seeking graduate employment and did not know how to approach taking the first step into the HR professional world. I knew it was time to start seeking professional development opportunities to provide me with the support and guidance I needed to navigate my career pathway. 

In March 2021, I began my first Permanent full-time role with Entrée Recruitment as Team Administrator and was recently promoted to Recruitment Administrator. I recognised five key steps that were crucial in facilitating my transition from university into the professional world and this incredible workplace.

1. Set achievable career goals

Setting clear career goals was my very first step on my journey. This is where I developed ‘SMART’ goals. Write them down and work on strategies in which to achieve these goals. My initial short-term goal was to ‘find work in Business Administration’ and I focused all my efforts to seeking employment within this scope. Now working in my role at Entrée Recruitment as Recruitment Administrator, I am on track to meet my career goals.

Learn more about ‘SMART’ goals here.

2. Be proactive

Don’t just expect work or professional development opportunities to fall into your lap. Be proactive and participate in a Mentor Program. It is an excellent way to directly connect and build a relationship with working professionals to gain a realistic insight into the real world of work and build industry knowledge. 

3. Get out of your comfort zone

I commenced my first full-time role in the home-building industry. Although it was not my industry of choice, I embraced the opportunity to develop essential administration skills. Coming into an industry with no knowledge or experience, I was quickly overwhelmed with new information and unfamiliar concepts. Although it was unfamiliar at first, I was adaptable and embraced the opportunity.

4. Find your routine

When commencing full-time work, the switch from studying late nights to working early mornings Monday to Friday proved very difficult. It took a good few months to wake up without feeling tired. Finding a groove and having a morning routine can help you to spring out of bed and start the day on a positive note. Every day when I wake up, I listen to a short news podcast called ‘The Briefing’ and have a cup of tea as I do my makeup.

5. Reach out

If there is a business you'd love to work for, email or call them. Reach out to people or businesses that you admire for work-experience or just for some advice. There are a lot of great opportunities that come from just putting yourself in front of the right people. I was referred onto Entrée’s General Manager, Megan Nicholson, by another industry professional. I reached out to Megan who happily accepted an invitation to meet for coffee to discuss the Recruitment Industry and the current jobs market. Once I had gained some admin experience, an opportunity was presented to me to join the team at Entrée and I was welcomed with open arms.