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Leaving school and entering the workplace

Leaving school or university and starting a job can be daunting.

We’ve created some useful tips to help you enter the workplace for the first time confidently. Keep an eye out for our events and resources that will also help.

Think about what job you want

Get support from your university, school or college – they can help you know where to start, how to write your first CV, and interview techniques. Think about what type of job would fit your unique skill set. Use career advice services to get information and guidance, such as the National Careers Service

Finding your first job

There are some great employment agencies around. They can find you an employer who will be a great fit for you. They work with organisations who are truly neuroinclusive. Take a look at:

Starting your first job

If you get a job working in an office, your organisation must conduct a Display Screen Equipment (DSE) assessment. The check ensures that your working environment is good. Why is this important? It can check if your desk and chair set up are right for you so that you can work comfortably. It also checks if your computer and accessories suit your needs, and it checks if your working environment is healthy.

Navigating meetings

Most jobs will have at least some meetings. These can seem strange if you have not been involved in a professional meeting before.

Good practice is to schedule meetings for 45-50 minutes instead of an hour. This ensures you have time to decompress from the previous meeting and take a comfort break.

  • If you’re making the meeting, set an agenda and send it out ahead of time. If you’re attending a meeting, request an agenda ahead of time
  • Block out time in your schedule to do other tasks, focus, or take breaks. This way, you won't be stuck in meetings all day.
  • For long meetings, be sure to break often. Use the time to stretch, walk, get a drink, or use the bathroom.
  • Stick to your meeting finish times. Protect those time blockers between them. You can always schedule a follow-up meeting if you didn’t cover everything.

Understand Access to Work and how to access it

Access to Work can help you get or stay in work if you have a physical or mental health condition or disability. Dyspraxia is an eligible disability, because it is a developmental disorder.

The good news is you do not need a diagnosis to apply!

The support you get will depend on your needs. Through Access to Work, you can apply for:

  • a grant to help pay for practical support with your work
  • support with managing your mental health at work
  • money to pay for communication support at job interviews

Practical support with your work (even if your workplace is your home) through a grant to help pay for things like:

  • specialist equipment and assistive software
  • support workers, a job coach or a travel buddy
  • costs of travelling to work, if you cannot use public transport
  • adaptations to your vehicle so you can get to work
  • physical changes to your workplace

To apply, check you’re eligible and then apply for an Access to Work grant.

Mental health support to manage your mental health at work, which might include:

  • a tailored plan to help you get or stay in work
  • one-to-one sessions with a mental health professional

To apply, check you’re eligible and then apply directly to either Able Futures or Maximus.

Dyspraxia and employment

Once you’ve got your first job, we have lots more tips to help you in your workplace. Take a look at our dyspraxia and employment pages.


Find out about the Dyspraxia Foundation and our mission.

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Help & Support

Find all the different ways the Dyspraxia Foundation can help and support you, from our helpline service, local groups and FAQs.

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News & Events

Find all the latest news from the dyspraxic community here, as well as upcoming events.

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