Have you been there? You just started a new job, but everyone is too busy to show you what to do and nothing is set up when you arrive. In order to look busy, you set about studying the employee handbook that has been plopped in front as if you are preparing for the LSTAT exams.
Onboarding, when done correctly, is the process that ensures a positive first impression for the new employee and starts the employment relationship off on the right foot. It can be done well if you are properly prepared. And when there is a standard onboarding process, SHRM reports that there is 50% greater productivity amongst new hires!
Being prepared for the arrival of a new employee demonstrates to them that you are professional workplace and it makes them feel welcomed at their new job. Below are some tasks that should be completed before the employee steps foot at their new job:
- Communicate with the new employee on issues that will make their first day smoother:
- what time they will start on their first day,
- where to park,
- where to go when they arrive, and
- who to ask for when they arrive.
- What is the dress code – Is it business casual or do most people wear jeans?
- Think through the start day and start time. What is going on in the workplace that day?
- Will key business partners be available to meet with the new hire?
- Is it month end?
- Is there a major conference?
- Is there a big shipment coming in and all hands-on deck are needed?
- Plan the employee’s first day so that they are not wondering what to do
- Plan to have them meet with various key departments that they will be working with.
- Educate the employee with how the business works. This can be done through meetings with brand managers, product managers or operations personnel depending on the industry.
- Make sure that IT requirements are set up and working prior to the arrival of the new employee. This includes:
- e-mail address,
- access to the building,
- parking permit,
- phone and
- access to job specific software
- Get the members of the new employee’s team to sign a card welcoming them to the company.
- Send out an e-mail to the organization announcing the arrival of the new employee or include the announcement in the company newsletter. Include the job title and a brief introduction about the employee.
Including some fun touches to the new employee’s first day shows the culture of the company. These small gestures go a long way and are the things that the employee will remember to tell their friends and family about.
- Give them swag. Everyone loves free stuff and it makes the employee feel connected to the organization.
- Give them a tour of the workplace. Show them the small but important things such as the coffee machine, lunchroom, supply room and first aid kit. Let them know which photocopier to use and which one always gets jammed.
- The first lunch can be intimidating with flashbacks of high school anxiety about who you will eat lunch with. Plan to take the employee out for lunch with the department or have everyone eat together in the lunchroom. This is a fun way for the employee to get to know their new team members in a relaxed social environment.
The difference that a good employee onboarding system makes is measured. OC Tanner reports that 20% of employee turnover happens in the first 45 days. The Society for HR Management measured that if an employee has a great onboarding experience, they are 69% more likely to stay with a company for at least 3 years. Reducing employee turnover and increasing productivity are two powerful outcomes of having your HR systems and programs ready and implemented.
If you are looking for a comprehensive onboarding program tailored to your workplace, contact us today!