The idea of employing someone might seem simple, but the pressure to get it right is immense. A bad hire can not only waste your time and theirs, it’ll impact finances too; the employee will likely end up leaving after you’ve invested in their development, and you’ll be required to replace them immediately after. Nobody wins.
Of course, the first step to avoiding this situation is to pick the right candidates, but the work shouldn’t stop there – you’ve also got a responsibility to make sure they integrate well, socially and professionally.
With that in mind, here are five of our most useful onboarding tricks. Use them to ensure your next hire hits the ground running!
Make an early introduction /
The onboarding process shouldn’t begin the day your new starter arrives at the office – you need to lay some foundations beforehand.
Start by making everybody aware that you’re about to welcome someone new to the team. Send an email explaining a little bit about them, their role and what they bring to the company. Be friendly about it, too – it doesn’t need to be a formal process!
To go one step further, try and arrange a situation in which the new starter can meet their immediate workmates – the ones they’ll be working closest with day-to-day – before they’re dropped into a professional situation. You could go for lunch, for example.
Prioritise preparation /
The first few days of a new job are always difficult – there’s so much to take in, from computer passwords and dress-codes to first-aid procedures and even people’s names. The last thing your new team member needs is unnecessary stress because things haven’t been set up properly.
Take the time in the weeks building up to the big day to arrange new log-in credentials, collect the relevant paperwork and prepare a clean workspace. Make sure whoever’s in charge of payroll has the information they need too.
Make them feel involved /
An employee won’t produce their best work until they feel completely comfortable in their surroundings, so make an effort to involve them from the very start. In-jokes are what will keep your team going when the strains of work life start to impact morale, so the sooner your starter is up to speed, the better. It may also help to ease any anxieties they have about communicating with their new colleagues – all of whom are likely to be complete strangers.
Get rid of the jargon /
Whatever industry you operate in, your company is bound to have its own language – all organisations do. There’ll be jargon terms relating to proprietary software, and taken-for-granted acronyms that nobody thinks twice about using anymore. Utter these in front of a new starter, however, and you might as well be speaking in Klingon.
Try instead to limit the use of words and phrases that won’t mean anything outside of the office walls, and when there’s no other option, offer a quick explanation.
It could take a while for your new recruit to work out what all of the strange words and phrases mean, but you could speed up the process by putting together a ‘things you might hear’ glossary. They can refer back to it if they’re ever confused and don’t have a chance to ask for clarification.
Don’t forget the fun /
Last but certainly not least, keep things light-hearted wherever possible. Yes, your new recruit is here to help the business, but they need to be happy if they’re to be effective. If on the first day they’re thrown straight from induction paperwork to a client meeting, without any chance to socialise with their new co-workers, they’re unlikely to feel excited about their decision to join.
What we’re trying to say is ease them in! Give them plenty of opportunities to smile and become comfortable in their new surroundings. Their quick development into a happy and hardworking employee will pay dividends for you as an employer.
If you are currently recruiting, please contact us on 0845 613 5199 to see how SF can help you secure the best talent for your business. Or alternatively, if you’re and experienced recruitment consultant looking to work for a business within the Sunday Times top 100 businesses to work for drop us an email: firstname.lastname@example.org.