Have you wondered why some potential superstars show up to work the first day and never return? A new employee orientation process is the crucial link between this new employee, her supervisor, and the rest of the organization. Research shows that if that link is not established starting on day one, retention can drop by as much as 25%.
This checklist can help streamline new employee orientation the next time someone is hired.
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- Hold a breakfast party or take the employee out to lunch
- Present the employee with a card, t-shirt, or other memento signed by all employees in the department
- Introduce the employee to coworkers, along with their job functions
- Build rapport and relationships
2. Acclimate the employee to a new environment
- Employee directory with names, phone numbers, photos, and job titles
- Map of local restaurants, convenience stores, and shopping areas
- List of things to do and how to accomplish them (get ID, order parking permit, request keys, order business cards, etc.)
- Interactive explanation of company departments and how they fit into the operational mission
- Avoid long, boring videos or lectures
- Give a tour of the workplace, highlighting restrooms, break areas, smoking areas, and first aid equipment
3. Help the employee feel productive
- Provide a work area that is ready to be used
- Explain how to use the telephone, fax machine, copy machine, email, and incoming/outgoing postal mail
- Explain how to request supplies
- Start the employee on a task that is related to her job description
- Cover the process for making suggestions
- Assign a departmental mentor
4. Review paperwork and policies
- W-2 and I-9 forms
- Time sheets
- Job description and performance expectations
- Terms of employment with compensation, benefits, time off, and probationary periods defined
- Information on educational assistance, retirement plans, and savings programs
- Training plan for first 30 days
- Handbook of health and safety, dress code, security, disciplinary, payroll, and privacy policies
- Explain standard work hours, overtime procedures, and how to take scheduled/unscheduled time off
- List of company holidays
- Organization chart
Remember that new employee orientation is a joint effort between senior management and the new hire’s supervisor. The process should not be left up to a single individual. By creating a welcoming and productive orientation program, you can boost performance from the start, solidify the employee’s relationship with the company, and confirm that your new team member made the right decision about working for you.
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