Why Onboarding And Orientation Matter

I have worked at places where onboarding is little more than filling out a stack of paperwork. New hire training and orientation are a matter of being thrown in the midst of things and trying to figure out what to do. Such a welcome to a new job can leave an employee feeling like their new employer cares little for their success. Regardless of the size of your company, creating a plan for onboarding and new employee orientation is important to employee retention.

Use Orientation To Review Policies And Company Culture

Onboarding includes everything from new hire paperwork to orientation and training. Orientation is more than simply having a new employee read your handbook. It should include a thorough review of important policies, benefits, expectations and company culture. Do not just read policies to new employees. Include examples of how those policies apply to the workplace, and make it interactive to keep people interested. I like to include a quiz with prizes at the end as a fun way to review important points.

Large companies typically have enough new hires to justify weekly orientation or even a monthly orientation that employees attend within their first few weeks. Small businesses can take a different approach. Consider a one-on-one meeting where a manager or another employee sits down with the new hire to go over important policies and to answer questions. This can be followed up by a quarterly orientation for everyone hired within the span of a few months.

Have A Plan For An Employee’s First Few Weeks

Start with the first day. Have all new hire paperwork ready to go when the new employee shows up. Designate the manager or someone else to give the employee a tour of the workspace and introduce them to their new coworkers. Plan lunch with the new employee and several people from their department as a way to welcome them to the team.

Develop a plan for an employee’s first few weeks on the job. Create a training checklist that shows what the employee should learn, and determine who will be responsible for training the employee. Use the training checklist as a way to measure progress and to determine what areas the employee may need additional training on.

We shortchange our new employees when we do not provide the training necessary to do their jobs. Set clear goals and communicate those to employees. Make time to check in regularly with your new employee to ensure that they are comfortable in their new job.

Lay The Foundation For A Good Employee

Taking the time to plan out the first few days of employment lays the foundation for a good relationship with an employee. It is not enough to throw a new hire into the deep end and expect that they will learn to swim through the corporate sea without training that has been well thought out. Good communication is the key to a successful relationship with an employee, and the onboarding process is an excellent way to create that from the beginning.

 

Image: bigstockphoto.com

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