Happy Holidays and Bah Humbug. While it is the most wonderful time of the year, January is also the most popular time for your employees to find a new position. And as you recover from the post-holiday haze to realize your receptionist ran away with Santa Claus or you need some extra help due to a surprisingly superb 2017, be aware you will likely be hiring new employees. We adamantly believe that the expectations you set and process you use to onboard your new employees make a huge impact on the employee’s overall happiness, motivation, and retention. Read on for our step by step guide to proper employee onboarding during their first two weeks…
Properly Onboarding New Employees – and so it begins…
Before They Start:
- Make sure to get their security, parking, or building badges if necessary.
- Activate and set-up their email.
- Prepare their computer, loaded with basic programs like email, Word, medical software, and anything else the employee will need to do their job on a day to day basis.
- Order business cards to arrive by their first day on the job.
- Have a list ready for them with all of the logins they will need.
- Do a quick survey of their work area to ensure it is clean and tidy. Provide gratis a notebook, pen, and piece of swag to take home after their first day.
- All paperwork should be prepared and printed (I9, W4, Application, Payroll and Direct Deposit Forms, Employee Handbook, Non-solicitation agreement, non-compete agreement, HIPPA Presentation, etc.).
- Ensure compensation was prepared in advance, agreed to, and there are no loose ends.
- Let other staff members know about the new addition to the team. Give them some background information and build up the new hire so the rest of the team is excited about working with them.
- Set expectations with current employees that they should be on their finest behavior at least for the first few weeks in order to set a proper example.
- First things first… get all the paperwork signed and out of the way before doing anything else.
- Take them on a tour of your office pointing out any important stops like the kitchen and bathroom, while also introducing them to each employee. Ensure you build up the current employee during the introduction, explaining the awesome things they add to the office. Keep it genuine, but positive.
- Have the new employee shadow current employees to learn the basics of their new position.
- Buy lunch on day one and sit with the new employee to start building a relationship.
- End every day with, “What questions do you have? How can I make you more comfortable here as you ramp up?”
Set the Following Expectations Clearly Within the First Two Days:
- What time does work start/end?
- How do they clock in/out?
- How is overtime handled?
- Benefits/retirement/medical/vacation process to request time off?
- How do I get fired? (stealing, lack of ethics, not showing up, being late etc. )
- How do I get promoted?
- How do I get a pay raise?
- Who do I complain to? (should always be up the chain, never down)
- Who is my boss and who reports to me?
- What are the current problems in the office you are aware of and working to fix?
- What are the strengths/core values of the office to reinforce?
Finalize Before the End of the Fortnight:
- Keep in mind during a new employee’s first month or so they are in Stage 1 of Situational Leadership. Early on they need low support, but high directive behavior: tell them what to do, give them the tools to do it, explain how to do it, and who to ask if they are unsure. Give less blind praise. Since they haven’t actually done anything yet it can come across as disingenuous.
- Assign a “light side” mentor – a person who is sipping the Kool-Aid, positive and pro-ownership — to take them under their wing and keep them away from the “dark side,” which is that one negative person with a bad attitude.
- Have a 1-on-1 review at the end of week 1 and week 2 to address any issues coming up for either of you.
Following these steps will set clear expectations for their position and the office values, ultimately helping new employees reach their full potential. First impressions go a long way, so work to keep it a positive one. For more tips on staffing, training, and management check out www.yellowtelescope.com or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.