Tips and Tricks- On-boarding

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    On-boarding Tips and Tricks

    Turnover is a huge concern for many HR professionals. One of the key steps an organization can take to reduce this during one’s first year is to develop an effective on-boarding program. Below are a few tips to get your started.

    Have on-boarding start before day one and last beyond the first week. Preparing a new hire should begin before they walk into the building on day one and should be part of their first year. Regardless of their experience and expertise coming in, starting in a new role can be intimidating especially if the new position required relocation. Ensuring they are ready to start on their first day is critical and ensuring they continue to feel comfortable in the coming year is even more important to their success.

    Develop experiences that will help them navigate the reality of the culture and the position. The proper set of experiences is a critical element of effective on-boarding. Finding the right balance of support during the first days and weeks is critical as an introduction; however it is important to look past the first few weeks and establish proper mentoring or coaching through some critical “firsts” for your employees. Many annual processes happen at the same time every year. If a new hire comes in right after the process has wrapped up for the current year, their first experience may be nine months from their hire date.

    Avoid too much hand-handholding treatment up front. Employees need to acclimate into your culture. If you start with too much support up front that abruptly stops on day two, or 30, 90, or even 365 days later, employees may experience shock at the sharpness of that change and may be left unprepared to navigate without the support.

    Carefully select a mentoring team and prepare them for their role of mentor. I have found that sometimes the mentor and mentee relationships have failed when only one mentor is chosen for the new hire. Sometimes personalities don’t align as well as planned even when the mentor has been fully prepared for their role. Introducing a new hire to a small group of mentors may provide a better success rate of finding a good match. Also a team allows you to provide your new hire with different levels of expertise.

    Include networking opportunities into the process. This includes the personal network and the professional network. It is important to plan ways to introduce new hires to those within and outside of their work group. If you are hiring a large number of recent college grads, find ways to connect them outside of work. This can be done through the use of social media or planned events. Also, if you are relocating new hires, find ways to assist in acclimating them into the community.

    What tips can you add? What stories can you share of effective and ineffective programs?

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