One of the key elements in retaining quality employees is to provide excellent onboarding from day one. One report showed that 1 in 25 employees leave their new jobs because of bad onboarding experiences
Imagine turning up for your first day of work to find the person who employed you is not due in the office for another hour, you have no desk or computer, and nobody knows who you are or what you are supposed to be doing!
How long do you think you will want to stay with such a disorganised and thoughtless employer?
The Interview Process
Successful onboarding begins during the interviewing process by providing a clear job description and collecting proof of qualifications. Information from the application stage can be transferred to your employee’s Human Resources information system.
Once the Job Offer is Accepted
Paperwork like completion of personal and bank details can be requested before the start date so that their income payments and tax details are set up for day one. The employment agreement can be sent out along with any employee handbook.
The week before the New Employee Start Date
IT provisioning like having a computer for the new employee connected to the local network and an email address and account all set up at their desk can enable an office worker to start their core work duties from day one. Their computer should be loaded with all software required for use in the role.
Other items that should be ready on that first day can include:
- business cards (including phone number and email address),
- mobile phone,
- ID badge,
- building access fob,
- Uniform (if required)
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On the new employee’s first day, to ensure they will feel comfortable, have somebody given the responsibility of greeting them when they arrive. Arrange a tour of the workplace so they get their bearings of the whole business operation and arrange a morning tea or lunch with all staff on the same work team.
Also schedule an onboarding meeting with an HR representative who can explain issues like employee benefits, company holidays and policies, parking and public transport, how to complete timesheets, company structure, team culture, and your company’s vision, mission, and values. The immediate Team Leader/Supervisor should also schedule a meeting to fully discuss job duties.
A further item to supply on their first day could be a Welcome kit. This could include:
- A welcome letter.
- Additional hire paperwork and HR documents.
- Technology setup instructions.
- Any promotional company material like a notebook, T-shirt, mug, etc.
- Pens, highlighters, paperclips, etc.
- A copy of your office map.
- A copy of your company organizational chart.
- A copy of their first week’s work schedule
- A copy of a book relevant to your team culture.
During the New Employees First Week
This is where the immediate supervisor meets with the new employee to discuss goals and performance objectives for the first 3 months, 6 months, and year. Any key projects over the next three months should be explained, and immediate work tasks can begin. Daily meetings will ensure immediate feedback and uncover any issues or queries that can be addressed as soon as possible.
Introductory meetings with heads of other departments enable the new employee to meet others they may deal with from time to time, and to better understand the workings of the entire business.
During the New Employees First 3 Months
The immediate Supervisor should schedule regular meetings to monitor progress and at the end of the 3 months review overall progress.
Beyond 3 Months
Ideally, the new employee continues to be monitored for up to a year. This makes them feel valued and in year two they can be integrated into your regular staff appraisal program.
There are many variations on what a best practice onboarding process should look like. The most important factor is to have a process and do much more than just pay lip service to it. A strong onboarding process will lead to satisfied employees that stay with their employer for many years.