News: March 2011
Employee induction programmes
We’ve all been there before – first day in a new job. You’re not sure what to expect. Everything is unfamiliar and you are apprehensive about proving yourself to your new colleagues.
To engage new recruits, employers need to think about each part of the process from application, interview and job offer to the first day – and beyond. Yet too often the induction process is not thought to start until the first day on the job. That is a mistake – and a missed opportunity. If you engage with your employees they more likely to stay longer, they are also productive and better at building good customer relationships from the start.
A good induction programme is the first strand of the employee engagement programme and needs to start early. A few simple steps will help your new recruit to take the early days in their stride. The period after an applicant has accepted a position and before they join is critical so ensure you keep in touch to alleviate concerns and respond to queries.
- Send an employment pack of relevant information with the offer letter and phone them a few days before they start to run through any questions.
- Ensure reception is expecting them on day one and knows where to take them – and brief the team. It’s important that everyone in the office (or at least in the relevant department) knows the new recruit’s name.
- Arrange a guided tour and introductions to other members of the office.
- Identify an office buddy for the new recruit to go to with questions. Whether this is a line manager or a colleague depends on the individual situation.
- Make the tone positive and keep written manuals and other paperwork to a minimum – good impressions work both ways.
- Ask the recruit to report back to you at the end of day one and follow up with the buddy or line manager – address any issues quickly.
- Offer constructive advice and assistance and give plenty of positive feedback and encouragement in the early days.
- Create a positive future vision by discussing development plans early on.
- Finally, don’t forget to complete a Probationary Period Assessment form. This works both ways – it allows the firm to establish that they have hired the right candidate for the job and it acts as a feedback channel for the new recruit and lets them know how they are doing in their new role.