Onboarding new employees isn’t just a task to check off the To-Do list – the impression you leave on a new hire can significantly influence their investment in your organization. A poorly planned onboarding not only prevents employees from starting off strong, it can even contribute to higher turnover rates. Be strategic with these tips on how to create a better onboarding experience for new hires:
Provide Information Ahead of Time
Don’t wait until your new hire’s first day to give them the employee handbook. Once they have officially accepted your job offer and have a set start date, provide any information you can ahead of time. This will allow them to review it and feel more prepared to tackle their first day with less uncertainty.
Celebrate Their Arrival
Starting a new job is a big deal for your employee, so they can feel dismayed if they show up on their first day and no one seems to be expecting them. Celebrate their arrival by planning ahead. Make sure their workspace is ready, give their coworkers a heads up, and have a small token (such as a signed card and company swag) to give.
Offer a Personnel Cheat Sheet
The sheer amount of introductions can be so overwhelming on a new hire’s first day, and it is unlikely they will be able to remember everyone’s names, faces, and titles for everyone they met. Make it easier for them to remember who is who by offering a personnel cheat sheet, such as a printed directory or intranet of photos, contact information, and other key information your new hire will need.
Prioritize Connection Building
New employee onboarding tends to be solely focused on job-related information and minimizes a major contributing factor to success: feeling like part of the team. Prioritize connection building by scheduling interpersonal activities during onboarding, such as fun conversation ice breakers, pairing them with a “buddy” or a current employee who will act as a mentor and a team lunch.
Offer a “Quick Win”
After the paperwork is completed, the employee handbook is ready, and introductions are made, your new employee may be feeling a bit anxious about what is expected of them work-wise and how quickly. On day one, as part of the onboarding process, make it a point to offer a “quick win” – an easy assignment that will help them gain confidence and give them something tangible to do. This can be a great way to transition into a discussion about their goals for the first 30 days.
Cover the Day-to-Day
Bigger picture topics like company policies and goals for the position are certainly important to cover during onboarding, but it’s likely the smaller day-to-day happenings that your new hires are most concerned about knowing. Often new employees stumble through learning about a company culture through trial and error, so save them the stress and cover the day-to-day during onboarding. Let them know about things like how lunch breaks are handled, where people usually eat, how strict/lax you are on punctuality, etc., and answer any questions they have.
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