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How to pass your probation period at work

How to pass your probation period at work

You’ve done the hard part and landed yourself a new job. But now you’ve realised you’ve got to conquer the probation period. The term ‘probation period’ sounds a little scary, right? Well, a probation period can either make or break your job. So they’re pretty important if you ask us!

If you’re just starting a new job, use these tips to make sure you pass your probation period with flying colours!

What is a probation period?

A probation period can be seen as a ‘trial’ period when you start a new job. During this period, your boss gets to test you out and see if you’re actually fit for the job. If they decide you’re not right for the role they can dismiss you at any time during this period without giving notice. The length of the probation period will vary depending on the company. But probation periods typically last anywhere from 4 weeks to 6 months.

Can you quit during your probation?

If you realise the job isn’t right for you, you can absolutely quit during your probation period. Check the terms of your contract. But often you’ll only need to provide 1 week’s notice (if any at all).

How to pass your probation with flying colours

Understand what’s expected of you

The first step in passing your probation period is knowing exactly what’s expected of you. How can you score a goal without knowing where the goalposts are? Your manager will have certain expectations of you and things they’re assessing. So if you have any targets, make sure you’re clear on these. 

Keep up a strong work ethic

You need to show your manager you have a great work ethic during your probation. This means having determination to achieve your goals. Don’t be a time waster or a clock watcher! It also means getting your head down to finish the job at hand – no procrastinating! So avoid too much idle chatter or using your mobile phone during office hours.

Be positive

It’s not just about how well you do the job. But also about the attitude you do it with! So having a positive attitude and strong interpersonal skills are key to passing probation. You need to show your manager you have a ‘can-do’ attitude. And if they offer you any feedback, always take this on board gracefully. 

Don’t be afraid to ask questions

Asking questions is key to your growth. You’re bound to have questions as you learn. Don’t feel like you should know it all. Your manager expects you to ask questions. If you hold back on your questions, you’ll miss out on important bits of information that could be key to passing your probation.

Keep up your attendance

Your managers monitor your attendance during your probation period. If your attendance is poor or you turn up late for work, they may extend your probation period or dismiss you from the role. So always turn up 10 minutes early and avoid calling in sick unless absolutely necessary.

Is it bad if your probation gets extended?

There’s no legal limit to how long your probation period can last. So, your boss can extend your probation period. If they do this, it usually means they need more time to assess your skills. If this happens, don’t get disheartened. You still have the opportunity to impress your boss. You should speak with your manager to understand what you could do better. They should give you feedback and let you know what they hope to see from you.

Ready to shine?

Are you looking for your next role? Use the SonicJobs app to find a new job in record time. 

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