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Making the Most of Your First 90 Days

Tuesday, 19 February 2019

Setting yourself up for success during your first three months in a new role can be challenging but crucial. If you’re starting a new role soon, here is our advice on how you can quickly find your feet.

Starting a new role can be incredibly exciting. It can often mean a fresh set of colleagues to get to know, a different workplace culture to adapt to, and a lot of new information to take in. But it can also be equally challenging as it is exciting. 

Your first 90 days in a new permanent job can define how successful your journey with your new employer will be, and although New Zealand law will be changing in May 2019 and will prevent large businesses from using the 90-day trial period, you should still carefully plan out your first 3 months in a new role to set yourself up for a very successful start.

To help you do just that, here is our guide on how to make the most of your first 90 days in a new role. 

Get Familiar with Your New Employer

Although you likely researched your new employer before attending your interviews, returning to that research and expanding on it can really provide you with some useful insight into your next work environment.

Adapting to a new team environment can be challenging and when you’re the newest Payroll Specialist on the block, meeting new people can be tough and even harder if you’re not a practised networker. However, start by observing how your team communicates and how decisions are made. Although you’ll be in a good position to put your fresh perspective and ideas forward, you should wait until adequate time has passed and you’ve built rapport with your team before making any suggestions.

On the other hand, you’re also going to want to make connections outside of your immediate team as well. Understanding who the key company stakeholders are can really help you settle in and excel in your new role. A great place to start is with the company’s Meet the Team web page but if your new employer doesn’t have one then you should head over to LinkedIn.

Searching for your new business on LinkedIn can provide you with a map of your employer and its key stakeholders. Once you have a few people you’d like to meet, go and introduce yourself and ask people about their roles and find out how or if you’ll be able to help each other. Don’t forget to create great relationships with the company’s Personal and Executive Assistants too as these professionals are often some of the most well-connected people in the business.

Get to Know Your New Role

If you are fortunate enough to have a handover period then make sure you use it effectively. A handover period will not only enable you to understand your role better but it will also help you absorb important information about the company, its culture and employees from your predecessor.

Taking notes during the handover period is extremely beneficial as this will serve as a guide should you become stuck later, especially if you’re going to be working autonomously. You should also ask your predecessor if they had any pain points during this role and whether they had any ideas on how to solve them.

Not only will your transcripts enhance performance, in the long run, they will also give the impression that you are taking the role seriously, are focused and keen to learn. Once you have learnt the processes and have a better understanding of the role, make sure you stay focused on your job as this will work concurrently with your overall job performance and ability to find your feet.

Build Rapport with Your New Manager

An integral part of being successful in your new role is understanding what exactly is expected of you in the weeks and months to come. After starting your job, your first meeting with your manager will be the best time to identify and note down these expectations but don’t be afraid to ask for clarity and advice on how to reach these targets.

Regular meetings with your manager will also help you get a quick understanding of their preferred management style but also make sure you’re open with them on how you prefer to be managed. For example, if your manager is keen to give you autonomy in your role and hasn’t set you any goals yet, but you prefer to have targets to work towards, then create these goals yourself and ask your manager to go through them together. This will help ensure you are both on the same page and will create the impression that you want success for both the business and yourself.

Ask Lots of Questions

Even with a wealth of accounting knowledge in your field, getting to grips with a new role can be challenging. You’re not expected to have all of the answers and asking questions about your new role will show that you are devoted and eager to learn. Make sure you listen attentively to all of the information given to you and don’t be afraid to ask for clarity if necessary. Asking questions on how things should be done correctly will reduce the margin for error and in turn set you up for success in a more productive workplace. 


Starting a new role can be daunting but we hope this article has provided you with some tips on how to set yourself up for success during your first 90 days and beyond! If you haven’t found your next role yet, then keep an eye on our job board if you’re looking for work in accounting, finance or business support roles. Good luck! 

Look for more great job searching and career advice? Check out our blog and follow us on LinkedIn.



Making the Most of Your First 90 Days

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