When it comes to onboarding new employees, the majority of employers have a to-do list which focuses on paperwork, meeting the team, a tour of the office and other similar tasks. However, what is not included is a plan which focuses on making the new employee feel included and welcome. Your organisation only gets one chance at making a good first Impression and the first few days will have a lasting impression on your new hire. If you make your new employees feel welcome, high employee retention and loyalty will follow. There are a number of things an organisation can do to make new hires feel welcome and appreciated:
1 – Have a welcome strategy: Everybody from management down, who is directly involved with the new employee plays a part in making them feel welcome. Current employees who will be involved should be asked how they felt on their first day and if there was anything other employees could have done to make you feel more comfortable and accepted. Once you have these answers you can then brainstorm and come up with a detailed plan for welcoming the new employee. Ensure that the plan is written down it will remind the staff of its importance, it also emphasises that everyone has an important role to play
2 – Even executives need individual attention: Often managers assume that new hires at executive level can just figure things out by themselves. This way of thinking leaves new hires feeling unclear about key decisions, undervalued and unsure about how best to work with their manager. Therefore it is important to take time to speak with the new hire one on one, even if it is just a 5 minute walk to another floor. This builds rapport and shows the new hires how the company works.
3 – Have a collage of immediate staff: One of the main aspects of starting a new job which creates anxiety for the new employee is wondering how they are going to fit in with the team. On the first day you meet a lot of new people and find it hard to remember everybody’s names. Instead of just giving the new hire a standard organisation chart with an employee’s name and title, give them a collage which contains personal information of the employee and photos. This could include some personal information such as family or hobbies. This type of information takes the pressure off the new employee in relation to remembering faces and names and will also make them feel like they are joining a family.
4 – Mentor/buddy system: When a new employee is hired, another employee should be assigned to show them how everything works, spend time with them and offer support or guidance when it is needed. This could be one set employee who will take on every new started or could be rotated amongst staff who volunteer. Whilst the buddy would be mostly responsible for looking after the new starter, other employees should also be involved and do their bit to make the new employee feel welcome.
5 – New member = new team: When a new member joins a team, it can be very easy for existing members to carry on as usual and don’t really think about team dynamics. Team integration is not just the responsibility of the manager and new hire, it is also the responsibility of the existing team.
Ensuring that new hires are properly onboarded and feel welcome if hugely important and has a huge impact on retention. Get off to the best start possible by being aware of this and following our steps to ensure your new hires feels included in the team and company as a whole from the outset.
Deutschendorf, H (2014) 5 Ways To Make New Employees Feel Welcome [online] https://www.fastcompany.com/3039232/5-ways-to-welcome-your-new-employee-to-the-workplace
Nawaz, S. (2019) How to Make Sure a New Hire Feels Included from Day One [online] https://hbr.org/2019/02/how-to-make-sure-a-new-hire-feels-included-from-day-one