How to Engage Employees From Day One: The Importance of Onboarding
Onboarding has become a major factor in determining the long term success of new hires. Many companies are establishing official onboarding programs as they begin to recognize the value of a well trained and engaged employee. A great onboarding program will have employees invested early on in their careers with the company and set the stage for high productivity. Here are some ways to keep employees engaged from day one:
Make Onboarding a Priority
Don’t let onboarding take the back seat to other responsibilities! Onboarding should be a top priority and should be seen as a high cost investment you are making to the company. Hiring a new employee without a thorough onboarding process is like an expensive office gadget and letting it in its box and collect dust. Recognize that employees are a company’s most valuable asset and make total use of them by giving them the attention and training they deserve from the very beginning.
Begin The Process Early
You don’t have to wait for a new hire’s first day to get them engaged. Start onboarding with the recruiting process and make a great first impression. It can be intimidating starting a job with a new company and having a little of the onboarding process take place before the first day might ease any nervousness. You can prepare welcome packets, send informational resources, and set up office space and personal meetings to jumpstart your relationship with your newest employee. They’ll be really grateful and your efforts will surely be rewarded!
Setting up meet and greet meetings is a great way to get your new hire involved and oriented. Onboarding relies heavily on building profound relationships between colleagues to strengthen the company. Having personal relationships gives new hires the opportunity to learn information about the company you can’t find in pamphlets, and creates a genuine and honest work environment. It also gives a new employee diverse perspectives and invites them to think about their own opinions. Building relationships makes way for a culture of networking and engagement that is very beneficial to any company.
A successful onboarding program sets the bar for communicating workplace expectations. Here, new hires can learn exactly what is expected of them from management so that there is no confusion at the beginning of their performance. It also is a great way to get insight onto what the new hire’s expectations from the company are so that there is a mutual understanding of how to maximize workplace satisfaction from both parties.
Perhaps the most critical piece of any onboarding program is the thoroughness of the training. Take the time to really walk your new employees through the day to day processes and details of projects in which they will be involved. Make time to answer any questions they might have and be available for any guidance they might need. The more understanding and up to speed your new employees become, the better it is for the company. When you invest the resources to make sure your employees are properly trained from Day one, you can almost guarantee consistent and high performance during their time at your company. Remember that training leads to commitment which leads to results!
Trish Bertuzzi, President of The Bridge Group, speaks about the importance of training your employees in a recent blog post.
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About the Author
Kathleen Cancio is a freelance blogger who has worked in PPC Marketing and Public Policy Research. She was most recently a Search Marketing Analyst at CommonMind, LLC, one of Clutch’s top PPC Agencies for 2015. She has a wide range of interests including painting, traveling and hiking.