A new hire’s first day on the job can be the beginning of a long, productive career, or the beginning of the end. According to research, 15 percent of new hires contemplate quitting on their first day. Here are six simple, low-cost things you can do to create a first day worth writing home about.
It’s the Little Things
Greet your employee: It so often happens that a new employee arrives only to be greeted by a receptionist, a fellow coworker or no one at all. The hiring manager should always be there to greet the new employee and show them around. If the hiring manager is too busy to even acknowledge the arrival of a new employee, how will that employee expect that manager will react if they need help later on?
Arrange meetings with colleagues: In a big office you may need to do this all in one go, but if you have a smaller office allow the employee to interact with each of their colleagues individually. This will teach your new employee how everyone’s roles fit together and who does what.
Start a little later: Rather than starting first thing in the morning, it can be more efficient to have them come in later. This will give you some time to settle and prepare for their arrival and give them a little extra time to get ready and find the workplace.
Stock the desk: There’s nothing more welcoming than a freshly stocked desk. Conversely, arriving to a desk with no supplies leaves the impression that no one’s been thinking about them. Apple uses this technique paired with an inspirational note that says: “There’s work and there’s your life’s work. The kind of work that has your fingerprints all over it. The kind of work that you’d never compromise on. That you’d sacrifice a weekend for. You can do that kind of work at Apple. People don’t come here to play it safe. They come here to swim in the deep end. They want their work to add up to something. Something big. Something that couldn’t happen anywhere else. Welcome to Apple.”
Assign a buddy: Johnson and Johnson Canada provides their executives with a senior mentor who has no direct working relationship to the new hire to provide guidance on both official and unofficial rules in the workplace. This can help employees get to know the workplace better.
Create a map of the onboarding experience: Almost everyone can agree that uncertainty isn’t fun. Help your employee visualize their experience by asking for their input in drawing up the timeline for their onboarding process. The company Percolate does this through task management system Asana where each onboarding task must be marked complete. Make sure among the tasks is a list of all key stakeholders the new hire should meet.
What do you do to make your new employees’ first day special?