Having advertised a vacant role to recruit the best talent in your organization, and you’ve scaled through the hurdle of scanning through thousands of applications, screened the successful applicants, and picked the best.

You are about to kick back and relax, but hold up, your job as the Human Resource Manager or Team lead is not over.

There is one last duty to perform before you can relax. “Welcoming the new employee.”

As trivial as this may sound, it is a determining factor of the productivity of the new employee.

As a new employee, the first day on the job can be nerve-wracking.

New job, new workspace, unfamiliar faces can make you anxious.

We have all been there at some point, and you know how it affected you in the first week of the job.

Therefore, to ensure maximum delivery and a lasting first impression from your new employee, the best thing to do is to try as much as possible to make them feel welcome.

This is why we have made a working list of ways you can use to welcome a new employee.

These methods are tested and trusted as they are practiced here at Cleverlism when we have new hires on our team.

HERE ARE SOME THINGS TO DO BEFORE YOUR NEW EMPLOYEE RESUMES WORK

1. Go Onboarding!

This is the most crucial step in making your new employee feel welcome. Onboarding is usually done when your employees resume; however, it is best having a set up beforehand. So what is Onboarding?

It is the method of integrating new employees into a firm or organization. You do this in a bid to familiarize your employee with the team and your firm’s culture.

Consequently, the goals, values, and mission of your company are conveyed to them; hence, your employee will be knowledgeable.

Also, onboarding is a long term process to give your employees ample time to get acquainted with the dynamics of the organization.

A week or a month is not enough for the full process of onboarding, as it will still feel rushed. On average, the timeline for onboarding takes 90 days.

Source: Panopto.com

Fig 1: Length of corporate onboarding programs.  Source: Panopto.com

There are so many benefits your new employee gains from onboarding that collaterally, benefits you and your team. Some of them are:

  • Increased engagement
  • Improved productivity
  • Increased communication

Increased engagement: Poor onboarding process could lead to some misunderstanding of duties. Consequently, one who does not know his or her duties will keep doing the wrong thing, hence poor delivery. Additionally, this could lead to employees leaving their jobs because of constant clash. A complete onboarding process will help increase the engagement of the employee from the first day; thus, a specific connection between the employee, his job, and coworkers. A work environment like this will set a conducive work environment.

Improved productivity: Productivity levels of new employees are hardly set high as it is believed that they are still learning the ropes of the company. However, proper onboarding can increase the productivity of your new employee. Onboarding can only lead to increased productivity if it is cultural and operational. Operational, in the sense that it should be a gradual, practiced system.

Increased communication: We have all experienced that nerve-wracking first day of work when we can hardly ask questions or make observations. This can stall productivity, especially within the first two weeks; however, when involved in an onboarding program, it gives room for communication between colleagues and team leads as well. Onboarding may include group tasks that require interaction with other workers, hence, striking a conversation and eventual friendship. Additionally, communication helps one understand their job, thus, increasing productivity.

How to Create an Onboarding Plan

An onboarding document is the first thing to prepare before your new employee reports to the office. It is like a guide for the new employee and will help give them a sense of responsibility.

The document should contain:

  • Your goals for the employee’s first 30 days, 60 days, and 90 days.
  • A blueprint of tasks they are expected to undertake
  • Necessary documents they need that may contain the company’s annual calendar, passwords they’ll need, and other critical odd ends
  • Their meeting schedules for the first month
  • An up to date profiling of all the colleagues they will be working with.

Creating this document will answer most of the questions your employee might have on the first day, thus a conducive workspace.

Additionally, the team could prepare a complete blueprint of the tasks they are already working to bring the newbie up to speed.

This will help inform the new hire as well as involve the experienced workers in training the new employee.

Having created the onboarding plan, the next step is to attach an onboarding mentor to the new employee.

This could be the team lead or an experienced member. However, for a more productive result, you, as the Human Resource Manager or the Director, can stand as the onboarding mentor.

If you involve yourself with the employee at this stage of their work experience, they will undoubtedly be pushed to achieve more in a bid to impress you.

However, you should still encourage interaction with their team leads and members to increase communication.

2. Connect With Them

Before the new employees report to the company, it is advised that you connect with them via social media. This will give them a sense of belonging even before they resume. Also, this should be done on a professional platform like LinkedIn, using the company’s profile.

A sense of belonging will foster an eagerness to work as you have extended a hand of friendship beyond the workspace.

Additionally, it is best done when they have not resumed as it will be awkward, requesting them after weeks of working with them. When you connect with them, you can include a welcome note with lines like:

Hello (Name), I just wanted to welcome you to the company. We are excited to have you work with us, and we can’t wait to meet you again.

3. Send Them an Email

Communication is key to welcoming your new hire, and you can never overdo it.

The more a new employee hears from you, the more he/she anticipates the job.

Your email will go a long way in unburdening your new hire of the stress of their last professional role.

Your email is one that should convey your happiness about them joining your team; this will, in turn, make them prepared and excited about resuming.

Additionally, you could include, as a reminder, the date and time of resumption if the HR has not done this already.

Also, you can use the medium to inform them of the company’s dress code and practices, ask them to come along with some vital documents and also give them a schedule of their first day.

Also, give room for them to direct any questions they might have to you and assure them of an immediate answer. A workable template was provided by Society Insurance Human Resources:

“[First Name],

Welcome to [business name]! We are pleased you have decided to become a member of our team! Although starting a job with a new company may be intimidating, we’d like to ease some of those stresses by explaining what your first day will be like.

  • Begin explaining where the employee should park in the parking lot(s), which door they should enter, at what time, and who they will be greeted by.
  • Next, explain who else the employee will be meeting throughout the day. This may include Human Resources to complete a tour of the building and necessary paperwork. Don’t forget about additional individuals, like their buddy.
  • Attach documents that employees are expected to bring with them on day one.
  • Include information about what they might be able to expect out of their first few months at the company – goal setting, company events, specific meetings, etc.
  • Attach the dress-code policy to give employees an idea of what to wear.

Relax, enjoy yourself, and we will be seeing you on [date] at [time]!

Best,

[Name]”

4. Prepare Their Workspace

No one wants to get a new place and start scrambling to get their table, chair, and system in order.

This will destabilize anyone as he/she does not know where these will be found. Also, it gives a subtle message that their presence does not count.

Thus, another crucial thing to do is to set up their desk space before they report to the office. Get a suitable desk space and make sure it is cleaned out properly; your new hire would not feel comfortable looking for the janitor or the supply closet on the first day.

Additionally, ensure that the properties of the last employee who sat there are moved out completely.

Then, provide all the necessary equipment for them. A computer, keyboard, mouse, extension cord, cabinet, and other stationeries are things that should be at hand upon resumption. Also, you should get help from the IT team to set up anything technical to avoid them spending time to power up their computers.

You could also add something to make it feel more welcoming, like a snack or a welcome card signed by the team. All these inputs will make your new hire more comfortable and successful from the onset.

5. Send Relevant Documents

Sending documents to the new hires will allow them to review it efficiently before they resume. You can attach it to the welcome email or as an entirely different email.

It could be a company brochure indicating benefits attached to working there.

Also, it could be the onboarding document to prepare them before they report to the office.

Attached to the document should be your reason for sending the materials so they can be clear on the context and if there is anything to prepare ahead of time.

Additionally, ensure that these documents are updated to avoid misinforming them.

Also, these documents should be organized appropriately to avoid mixing things up. Your resources should also be easy to understand for someone who does not know the workings of your company or group.

6. Get an Office Mentor

As soon as your new hire resumes, it is best to attach a mentor to them.

This mentor should not only be on a professional basis but also a buddy in and outside the office.

A mentor should be there to hear the new hire’s fears and concerns, applaud their successes, and correct when necessary.

You could pair the new employee with someone in a different team in a bid to encourage the interrelationship and brainstorming between the old and new employees.

Consequently, the employee becomes confident enough to ask questions he wouldn’t ask the manager.

Also, this increases the bonding process between the employee and his colleague while learning the culture of the company.

Although third party contact yields result fast, you must choose mentors that are willing to work with the new hires and will present the company in a good light.

Also, pick a hardworking one that will motivate the new hire as opposed to a relaxed one.

The first contact in the company leaves a lasting impression on a person. It determines their attitude to work after the initial stage.

7. Set up One-on-One Meetings

Your job does not end after hiring a new employee. You still have to put them through and help them be the best. You can’t blame them for incompetency if you can’t train them.

Therefore, make out the time on your calendar to have personal meetings with the new hires to track their progress effectively.

These one-on-one meetings should extend beyond the first week or first month of employment. Additionally, you can opt for training sessions with the newbie and attend these sessions with them to have a bond of some sort with them.

Meet with them every opportunity you get and ensure that you have an open relationship with them where you can include a third party for more knowledge base.

8. Organize a Team Lunch or Dinner

A company or group that excels is one that has taken charge of its professional space as well as outside the work environment.

Organizing lunches, group sports, games, and dinners with your new hire and team members serve to create a great relationship amongst themselves.

By doing this, you create an avenue for team members to get to know the new employee outside the corporate space.

Bonding is one valid form of ensuring that a good working relationship is established — what better way to bond than over good food, excellent atmosphere, and some drinks.

Keep the conversation upbeat and not work-related but appropriate. This creates the best atmosphere for a good working relationship and will get rid of any awkwardness from the new hire.

9. Announce Their Arrival

As much as we feel like laying low in a unique gathering, we still want a mini spotlight. To this effect, when your new hires report to work, try as much as possible to announce their arrival.

This may sound trivial, but it is advisable to do so as no one wants to be wrongly addressed as a visitor instead of a new hire.

Even if you do this during a board meeting or just a short announcement while everyone is at their desk, the truth is that little hello or welcome someone tells a newbie goes a long way in making them comfortable enough to deliver.

Other ways to welcome a new employee when he/she arrives includes:

  • Personally, welcome the new hire as soon as they step in.
  • Take them on a guided tour of the office grounds while making introductions here and there.
  • After introductions, you can take out time maybe during the break for a proper introduction/bonding session.
  • Involve them in practical projects where you get to gauge their skills accurately.
  • Give them a task to handle, even if it’s a minor one, to keep them busy while they are undergoing training.

Beyond the first day of work,

You should conduct a follow-up with the new hire, checking his or her progress, and recording it to help with corrections where necessary.

Also, after the first week, meet with your new hire to ask how he enjoyed working with the team and what his challenges were. If he liked his workspace, his colleagues, and any suggestions he might have.

After the first week, you can check back with them intermittently, say, between the first and third months, to ask their challenges with the job and if there is anything to add to improve their working structure.

Such feedbacks will let the new hire know that his ideas are valued.

Source: Peopleworks

Fig 2: Processes of welcoming a new employee  Source: Peopleworks

CONCLUSION

After the stress of sorting through applications and picking the best, the next call of action is preparing for your new employee.

The above steps will help you with this task; however, a to-do list will make things a bit easier for you so as not to miss anything out.

While following your new employees up, it is vital to give them breathing space so as not to overwhelm them. Give way for friendly conversations and informal settings to build trust with them.

9 Ways to Welcome a New Employee to Your Team

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