So, you’ve made it all the way through the recruitment process and with the help of your recruitment agency you’ve found your perfect new team member. They match the role perfectly, their experience is ideal for your organisation and their soft-skills suggest they’ll fit into your team well.
But now it’s time to make sure they feel welcome and comfortable as they embark on the next step in their career. Integrating a new team member can be a challenge – you want to ensure they pick up their new responsibilities quickly whilst feeling at home amongst your existing team.
Making the process of managing a new employee run smoothly is a team effort in itself: the employer, HR department and manager all need to be involved.
We’ve put together some key advice to help you maximise the potential of your new employee whilst making them feel welcome and supported in their new place of work. At the end of the day, staff retention depends on a mix of factors including how well you integrate your new team member from the word go.
Employee Orientation: Make the most of it!
You’ve employed a new, talented employee and you’re eager to integrate them into your business – so you begin the employee orientation process. There’s a few ways you can make the process easy for you and for your new team member:
- Keep the process simple and fun: There’s a lot to be taking on board, so try to look at your employee orientation from your employee’s perspective. On their first day, provide them with a schedule for their first week and make sure they are familiar with all their new materials. An extensive FAQ on your website can do wonders not only for your customers, but for your new employees too.
- Be clear about the corporate family tree: This may not seem immediately necessary but it can be reassuring for your new employee to know who is who, especially in a larger corporation. On your staff intranet or in a communal area, have space for a meet the team section that puts names to faces.
- Make it personal: Each new employee will have been employed for different reasons – with a different set of strengths. It’s important that you don’t use a one-size fits-all approach to employee orientation. Choose a mentor for them that you think they will get along well with and make sure they get as much of the form-filling done before they start – that’s not an exciting task for the first day!
Benefits are only benefits if your employees know about them
The vast majority of employers will highlight the perks of their business when advertising their job vacancy – right at the beginning of the recruitment process.
For example, your new employees will know that a big perk at your organisation is the option to have work at home Fridays or flexible working throughout the week. On the other hand, it may have slipped under the radar that you also offer a generous healthcare package and holiday allowance.
As you integrate your new employee, make sure you (or their mentor) run through the benefits that apply to them and what they need to do to make the most of them. If there’s a certain process for applying for holiday, let them know so they can plan ahead for their upcoming year in your business.
If you also offer a bonus scheme, year-on-year wage increase or regular promotion opportunities make sure you’re clear about the requirements involved. Do you base it on performance? Or, and this is often popular for shift workers, is it based upon attendance? It’s always important to highlight if your scheme is based upon group performance or the individual.
And here’s what you definitely shouldn’t do.
There a few ways that employers can easily turn-off new employees – putting all of your hard work in HR to waste. Not to mention the investment you made in the recruitment process.
In a lot of ways, it’s important to manage expectations at interview level. Make sure you sell your organisation well, but be honest at the same time. Don’t over egg it.
When your new employee starts don’t simply leave them to meet others: introduce them to people and ensure someone offers to take them out to lunch on their first day.
And in a similar vein, make sure your employee has a place in your organisation. Have a desk ready and assigned to them from day one and make sure they have the opportunity to offer valuable contributions in their first week.
This blog post could go on for quite a while with dos and don’ts for integrating a new team member. But one of our best tips, here at ACR, is to make sure your new employee understands why you decided they were the perfect fit for your business. At the end of the day, you employed them for the soft skills as well as their qualifications and experience – so highlight why you know they are going succeed working with you.