Making an employee’s first day their best first day ever doesn’t come easily. In fact, for every company that excels at it, there are five more who are doing it oh-so-wrong (or not at all!) So much time is spent on candidate experience from the sourcing, application and interviewing process, that onboarding often gets lost in the shuffle. If you don’t have time to overhaul your entire onboarding process with a comprehensive system like Click Boarding, at least make sure you know the following Onboarding DOs and don’ts:
1) DO Make sure you’re ready for your new hire before their first day.
Have a clean, uncluttered space already set up and ready for your new hire. Get their computer, monitor, and any other necessary materials ready and available. Go the extra mile and add a personal touch such as a welcome note or a company branded gift.
2) DON’T keep your new employee in the dark about their schedule or team.
Nearly 4% of new employees leave their new jobs after a disastrous first day. Make sure your new hires know what is coming and are ready for their first day. Even after the first day, new employees will need some guidance and direction to learn the company’s schedule, team dynamics, and work processes. If they don’t get acclimated or feel included, they won’t be around long – 46% of new hires fail within the first 18 months, while 25% leave the company within the first year.
3) DO make new hires feel welcome by eliminating pesky paperwork.
Ensure that your onboarding processes are paper and hassle free – it will be a relief both to you and your new hire. No one wants to spend the first day of their new job filling out forms and documents. And no manager wants to deal with keeping the piles of paperwork organized and properly filed. Onboarding is complicated enough already without all the paper, so make it easy on yourself and go paperless.
4) DON’T throw your new hire into the deep end without giving them proper introductions to their teammates and new colleagues.
74% of Millennials ranked collaborative work environment as an important workplace characteristic. Introduce your new employees to their new colleagues and let them ease their way into the team. Growth Everywhere observes, “It may be difficult for new hires to integrate themselves into the culture. They may feel the need to stand in the shadows and understand how everyone interacts before joining in on conversations.” So let your new hires in on company jokes and traditions rather than watching them awkwardly laugh along with everyone else, all the while having no idea what’s funny.
5) DO create a special onboarding ritual unique to your company.
Many companies have distinct and fun traditions to help new hires feel welcome. Some teams use trivia games or other icebreakers to get to know new employees. Zazzle has an in-office scavenger hunt to help newcomers familiarize themselves with various departments. Polyvore gives new employees a $100 gift card to their website. However it is done, new employees need to be welcomed – they’ll decide within the first 30 days whether they feel welcome in the organization, and that feeling can determine the longevity of the employee at your company.
6) DO create a space just for your new hire so they’re comfortable from day one.
If the new employee has a space to “own,” they will own their role and responsibilities for the company. They will feel free to be themselves and invest in their work. Give them a desk or workspace their first day, allow them to personalize their area, and let them thrive.
7) DON’T leave your newest employee alone to “figure it out.”
60% of employees feel that necessary skills will be learned on the job. New hires need structure and a plan to follow. To be successful in their new position, they need to know what they need to know. So create a checklist for onboarding your new employee. Write it out clearly and cross certain training tasks off as you go. Reference it until every task is checked off. By the end of the list, your new employee will be efficiently and effectively trained.
8) DO offer a mentor or buddy for the first day or week.
The newcomer will feel more comfortable if you have a designated employee or “buddy” for them on their first day. The “buddy” or mentor can be a valuable source of reassurance and guidance. It will help employees understand the intricacies of the company and allow them to feel confident enough to speak up and integrate themselves into the culture.“Think of how often a team can get derailed by just one new addition who doesn’t understand the norms and values that support the foundation of that team’s success!” says Michael Kerr, a writer for the Humor at Work Blog. A little explanation goes a long way.
9) DO set goals with your new hire and use the first week to set expectations.
Use goals and expectations to give new employees direction and motivation. Jeff Haden, a LinkedIn ghostwriter, explains, “Your eventual goal is to train comprehensively by breaking large processes down into manageable chunks. That way new employees can immediately see how their role directly connects to creating value for your company, and you get great opportunities to provide immediate, constructive feedback.” Point your new employees in the right direction, train them right, and watch them run.
10) DON’T leave onboarding to chance.
Make it easy on yourself and your new hires. Have a reliable plan, and follow it. Click Boarding’s new employee onboarding software makes it easy to get onboarding right, so you can spend your time planning the fun rituals, games and swag you’ll wow your new employees with!
What would you add to this list? Do you have an onboarding secret to share? Ping us on Facebook or leave it in the comments!