Congratulations on your new role. Your CV was ace and you obviously nailed the interview. Your financial situation is suddenly looking up and the future appears bright (is that a socially distant shopping spree we see on the horizon?).

But, dear reader, are you on top of the admin? We’re talking about #Adulting. Whether it’s updating your Revenue account or signing a copy of your new contract, there are five things you ought to do when starting a new job

  1. Sort things with the tax man, AKA ‘Revenue’

Most workers in Ireland pay tax through the PAYE (Pay As You Earn) system. This means your employer takes tax out of your wages and gives it directly to Revenue (the tax man) on your behalf.

To make sure you are taxed correctly, and to avoid paying Emergency Tax, you must:

  • Give your employer your PPS number as soon as possible (ideally before your first day)
  • Register your details online using Revenue’s ‘myAccount’ service

Confused? That’s okay. Understanding your tax situation can be confusing. If you need help, call or email your local Citizens Information Centre  for guidance.

2. Get a copy of your contract and read it.

Raise your hand if you’ve ever ticked the “I have read and accept the terms and conditions” box, despite never reading so much as the opening line…

It’s fine, we all do it.

But, we do recommend that you read your new contract of employment from top to bottom (ideally before you sign on the dotted line).

Some employers have strict rules when it comes to dress code, while others do not allow you to take up additional work with other companies. Always read the fine print and know exactly what’s expected from you. By reading your contract carefully, you can avoid uncomfortable (or even disciplinary) issues down the line.

3. Check your break entitlements 

As an employee, you’re entitled to rest periods to eat and re-energise. Your breaks will depend on how long you’ve worked on a particular day, as well as the type of job you have.

In general, you should get a 15-minute break when you work for 4 ½ hours. Or, if you work more than 6 hours, you’re entitled to a 30-minute break. Your employer does not have to pay you for these breaks as they are not considered ‘working time’.

You also have a right to disconnect from work. This means you do not have to answer work-related calls, messages or emails outside of your normal working hours. #DoNotDisturb.

You can learn more about your break entitlements on the Citizens Information website.

4. Understand your entitlements to annual leave and public holidays

Holiday mode, activated.

Most people get 4 weeks of paid annual leave each year. You might get more, depending on your employer.

On top of this, all full-time employees get 9 public holidays a year, including St Patrick’s Day and Christmas Day. If you must work on a public holiday, you’re entitled to get either:

  • A paid day off within a month of the public holiday
  • An extra day’s annual leave
  • An extra day’s pay

Need a hand figuring out your holidays? Call the Citizens Information Phone Service for help on 0761 07 4000 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm). Or, fill in this call-back form and a member of the team will ring you within 2 working days.

5. Start saving small amounts (regularly!)

If possible,open a savings account at your local bank or credit union. Or, set up a savings vault with Revolut. Every cent counts and will stand to you in the long run.

  • Put aside €1 each week and you’ll save €52 within the year
  • Put aside €5 a week and you’ll save €260 within the year

By starting a saving habit early, you can strengthen your position when applying for loans (or even a mortgage) in the future. Your lender will see that you’re financially responsible, plus you’ll have a decent deposit to boot.

If you need help understanding any issues relating to employment, money or tax, call the Citizens Information Phone Service on 0761 07 4000 (Monday to Friday, 9am to 8pm). Alternatively, request a callback by filling in this callback form.

You can also contact your local Citizens Information Centre by phone or email.

Follow @citizensinfo on Twitter and @citizensinformation on Facebook for all the latest updates.

Citizens Information Services are funded and supported by the Citizens Information Board.