Employee retention begins on the first day of employment, and how you orient and train a new employee will affect their ongoing success. Employers should have a process for welcoming new hires to ensure their experience is positive and motivating. This will encourage them in a positive direction by being enthusiastic about performing an optimal job for your firm.
Send them a welcome letter as well as an employee introduction letter to create a positive onboarding experience.
Employees who are valued as a key part of their company's success will most likely remain with the same company. They will find their job rewarding if they are provided with new challenges and opportunities for growth.
How to Retain Employees
To ensure new employees have a positive experience on their first day of employment, create an efficient, welcoming process that includes the following:
- Prepare the work space: Set up a work area that has all of the equipment and comfort items the new employee may need to become productive on their first day.
- Determine the best start date: Schedule the new employee to start on the manager's least busy day. Arrange for the new employee to spend several hours with their manager meeting coworkers and learning about their job. Make certain that a new employee orientation schedule is developed.
- Alert and prepare the front desk for the new employee's arrival: Have front desk employees welcome the new employee in an informed, supportive way. Front desk personnel should be prepared to direct the new employee according to the manager's instructions.
- Arrange meet-and-greet lunches: Schedule lunches for the new employee for the first few days so the employee has a chance to meet people.
- Send paperwork and the handbook prior to the start date: Ask the employee to complete any paperwork and review the handbook before their first day. Schedule time at work for the employee to ask questions and get clarification on company information such as benefits, payroll, or rules and regulations.
- Assimilate the new employee into the company: Assign a mentor and schedule meetings with friendly interested coworkers who can build relationships with the new employee.
- Arrange proper guidance: Schedule regular meetings to ensure a long, fruitful relationship with your employee. Understand the time commitment involved in mentoring a new employee and assign the appropriate person who has the time and knowledge.
- Plan a first assignment: Have the employee work on a core component of their job on the first day. New employees thrive when they feel immediately valued and productive.
Contact the new employee prior to their start date with all of the benefits paperwork and the employee handbook sent in advance so the employee can read the paperwork and fill it all out prior to their first day of employment. You can also give the new employee access to your online portal to learn about the company. Use the first day to welcome your new employee and orient them to their department and their team.
While your work is important to meeting company goals, it's equally important to properly invest the time and effort in bringing on a new employee to contribute to your company's success.
Mistakes to Avoid
When onboarding a new employee, it's important to make them feel welcomed and valued as a new team member. You want to prepare them as well as your team for their arrival to ensure the employee's smooth transition into the company. You also want to represent your company in the best way possible to reassure the employee that they made the right decision to join your firm. Therefore, if you are bringing on a new hire, you will want to avoid these mistakes.
Upon the employee's arrival, don't keep them waiting in the reception area for a half-hour. Make sure reception is aware of their arrival. Reception staff should not have to figure out what to do with the employee and who is expecting them. This indicates poor communication among staff and lets the employee know they are not important.
Also, do not schedule a new employee's first day while their manager is on vacation or away at a conference. Other staff members are not prepared to give the new employee meaningful work or training while the manager is absent. In general, employees start their first day in a meeting with their manager.
In this scenario, the employee may be left at their workstation to manage on their own for the entire day. The employee is not introduced to coworkers or assigned a mentor or staff member who can help them adapt to their new workplace, which may make the employee feel isolated and not valued as a new part of the team.
Don't let the employee sit in a hall or share a cube for the first few days while you scramble to create a work area. This experience indicates workplace inefficiency and that the new employee is not important.
Also make sure that you assign the proper staff person to guide the new employee. For example, don't select a staff person who has a major, career-impacting deadline–in three days. Instead of being made to feel welcomed and valued, the employee may sense that the staff member feels rushed and that the employee is an obstacle in meeting the deadline.
Avoid giving the employee busy work that has little to do with their job. This communicates to the employee that you didn't consider them important enough to schedule a time to start them on what they were hired to do.
Also, don't start the new employee with a one- or two-day new employee orientation after other HR presentations. This can become tedious, as it occurs after other long presentations involving benefits, the employee handbook, and sign-off. This is not good for the morale of a new employee.
Encouraging healthy, productive relationships among employees, managers, and coworkers from the start of a job throughout the time of employment is key to employee retention. Employees should feel that their work matters and that they are part of their company's growing success.