Try and keep the first day simple. The first day should be about the employee having a great experience, going home and telling their significant other or family.
This means providing “critical” information such as where to park, where to find the coffee bar, and where the restrooms are located. This is a simple day after which the employee can walk away saying, ‘I have everything I need to get back here tomorrow’.
An industry overview is critically important. You want your employees to understand what the company does and how you’re different from the competition.
Assign a “mentor” to take the new employee under their wing. It could be someone who is in the same position as them or someone who started out in the new hire’s position. Let them know they can come to this person with any concerns, for guidance, or just to have a friendly conversation. If you aren’t able to assign a mentor, for whatever the reason, then it should be you.
And never let them eat lunch alone. Often times, the new employee is worried about what they will be doing during the lunch hour. This is the company’s time to learn more about them as a person. Make it a Team event and make it fun.
Plan their first small successes. If you can help your new employees have some small wins early on, it will accelerate the process of them becoming a strong contributor to your company and a part of your competitive advantage. Quick successes also give them the confidence needed to excel in a new role and help them earn respect from their colleagues. Make it a high priority to discuss their initial goals on the first day, asking them what they think it will take to accomplish them.
THE FIRST WEEK
It can be tempting to try to provide a lot of information to a new employee on his or her first day, but it’s a good idea to stretch it out into a longer period of time. The reality is that for a lot of new hires, too much information will be overwhelming and tough to retain.
If there’s a lot of work to be done at your company, you may be tempted to have your new hires start fighting fires with you as soon as they walk through the door. But helping them take a slow, deep dive into your organization through lots of quality face time with managers and colleagues makes for more engaged employees. And helping new hires strategically plan for early success will encourage engagement even more, helping them become high-performing, loyal contributors to your team.
Design the first week to provide the basics, such as time spent shadowing others. Most importantly they should understand objectives and what is expected of them. And make sure they understand the larger mission. ‘Give the employee a look at the company through the customers’ eyes.
You definitely want to do an even deeper dive into the who, what, where, when, and why of the company. Communicate high-level information about the organization’s history, structure, and culture. Get into the core mission of the new hire’s team or department, including who they will be working with and how to interact with coworkers.
Finally, make sure the employee understands the organizational chart. Who will play a role in their performance? Who those key people are and how a new hire can reach out? For example, who do they call about payroll or how do they reach IT for a computer question.
THE FIRST 90 DAYS
The most crucial part of a successful onboarding process is checking in with the new employee regularly. Managers may schedule formal, daily meetings, or they can simply stop by the employee’s workspace to part of a successful onboarding process is checking in with the new employee regularly.
Ask candid questions: Do you feel you understand your job description? Is what you’re doing what you feel you were hired to do?
You should create 30-, 60- and 90-day plans. The manager should go over expectations and provide touch points. These should be a formal sit-down meetings, with the new hire’s overall objectives broken down into digestible chunks.
Communication and support keep employees engaged. Engaged employees will buy-in to your culture and will produce far better results.