So you’ve spent hours sourcing, interviewing and negotiating in order to find the perfect employee for your organisation; you probably think that the hard part is over, right? Not quite. The first week or two in the job is an incredibly important time for your new employee, so it is essential that you ensure they get off on a good note and feel happy and engaged in their new role. If you fail to effectively onboard your employees, they will form a negative first impression of the company and you are at risk of losing them at an early stage.

Employees want to be thoroughly initiated when they start in a new role, and it’s to your benefit too if they can learn the ropes as quickly as possible.

In order to get your new employee off on the right foot, here’s how you can onboard them effectively:

1) Introductions and tour

On your employee’s first day you want them to feel welcome and help them get settled quickly. You can start by properly introducing them to the team and giving them a tour of the office, so they can familiarise themselves with the different departments and facilities.

By getting your whole team involved in making them feel at ease, they will soon integrate into the business and form relationships with colleagues. Encourage other employees to involve them social activities, such as inviting them out for lunch with them or for drinks after work, so they have the chance to get to know people a bit more.

2) Describe the company’s values

Although you have probably touched on the topic of your company’s values and vision in the interview, it’s always a good idea to refresh your new employees memory and go into a bit more detail about your future goals for the business and how they will fit into your plans. Provide them with information about the company’s mission, strategy, goals, customers and operational structure, to ensure that they feel involved and know how their particular role adds value to the running of the business.

3) Explain responsibilities

You’d hope that by this point they would have a pretty good understanding of what their new role involves, however different companies do things in different ways, so it is still important to provide them with some guidance about how you would like things to be done, who they will be reporting to and working alongside, etc. It is also essential that you bring them up to speed with any ongoing projects that they will be involved in and introduce them to clients/customers.

4) Set goals

It is important to let them know your expectations of them early on and provide them with information about how their performance will be assessed. You don’t want to give your employee too much work, too soon, as this can be overwhelming; however by setting a few goals for them to work towards in their first few months at the company, it will provide them with a focus and ensure they are engaged from day one.

5) Ensure they have all the required resources

Ahead of your employee’s first day you must make sure that you have collated all the necessary resources and tools ready for their arrival. This includes access to an employee handbook outlining company policies, procedures and other important information, tech equipment set up for them, the required software installed and log-in details provided.

6) On the job training

Providing on the job training will help your employee to get up to speed with software and tools and helps them to develop new skills in order to meet the needs and expectations of the company. Providing hands on training will help new employees to adjust and settle into their roles much quicker than if they are provided with a manual or left to teach themselves.

7) Provide them with an mentor

It’s likely that your new employee will have a lot of questions in their first couple of weeks in the job, so it’s important that they have someone to go to for help. By providing them with a mentor they will feel like they have the support they need and it’s a huge comfort to know they have a go-to person to talk to about any concerns or queries they may have.

8) Ask for feedback

Once your employee has been with your company for a few months ask them for a bit of feedback about their experience and thoughts on your onboarding process. From this you can evaluate how effective it is, pinpointing what works well and what needs to be improved for future hires.

[Image Credit: Shutterstock]

About Sophie Deering

You can follow Sophie at @SophieDeering.

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