All Aboard! How to Keep New Hires Chugging Along in the Onboarding Process

Posted on July 1, 2019 by Rick Rossignol

Business owners know that like fashion trends, their staff members can easily come and go. Quick turnovers happen for a variety of reasons – perhaps both the employer and employee made unrealistic promises, the job expectations weren’t made clear, or a more extreme cause; the new hire found the organization to be a toxic environment.

 

That’s why it’s critical to execute a smooth onboarding process with new employees. First impressions are incredibly important, especially in the workplace. RTR Consulting offers the following five solutions to optimize your onboarding practices:

 

Maintain a Balancing Act

 

In college, professors will often dedicate the first day of the semester to reading the class syllabus and going over other housekeeping items. Many companies choose to adopt a similar routine by having new hires complete all their hiring paperwork on their first day.

 

There are certainly forms that should be filled out straight away, but you don’t want to mislead your employee into thinking that he or she won’t be completing any ‘real’ work on day one. You must maintain a balance between overworking your employee and overflowing their desk with documents. You can always schedule the paperwork portion of the onboarding process to be completed in digestible segments over the course of the week.

 

It’s also important to prepare for the new hire’s arrival in advance. Before the first day comes, make sure you’ve obtained their computer password, ID badge, and HR forms and created plans to introduce the rest of your staff to the new team member.

 

Communicate Expectations

 

Telling hires that your organization “expects excellence” is a vague expectation to communicate. You must be clear and specific about the results you want. If you work in sales, you might have a daily quota you need to reach. If you are in the advertising industry, your goal may be to share your product with X number of prospective clients.

 

You can also have less numerical expectations, such as learning specific types of software and systems by a certain date. Whatever your expectations are, they should be tied to your company’s overall values – which should also be clearly communicated to your new hire.

 

Set a Schedule

 

There shouldn’t be any long gaps of downtime in your employee’s schedule, lest it be thought that your company is disorganized or worse, that the job is boring. Create meaningful tasks that will get the employee hitting the ground running.

 

Bonus points if you use scheduling and task management tools to guide your staff. Eventually, your newest team member will be able to structure the schedule to fit their preferred working style.

 

Cross Training

 

There’s no need to have one person perform all the training duties. The new staffer will greatly benefit from a comprehensive overview of how your business works and who is responsible for what tasks. Not only will this give each of your veteran employees ample time to train and work on their own projects; the rest of your team will be able to provide additional insight and have the chance to work closely with their new colleague.

 

Feedback is a Two-Way Street

 

Feedback is a crucial element of any job setting and more so when a person is learning a whole host of new systems and procedures. This will be a prime time for you to let your new hire what they’re doing well and what needs improvement.

 

Likewise, your hire should have the same chance to let you know of any concerns or suggestions on their mind. This may open the door for you to improve any processes or expectations and identify any signs that this candidate may not be the right fit for your company culture.

 

RTR Consulting has more than 20 years devoted to developing effective and efficient human resources policies, procedures, and best practices for small, start-ups, and medium-sized businesses. Contact us today if you need help keeping your business running smoothly.

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