Every business, no matter it’s size, relies on the performance of its employees; therefore, hiring the best candidates continues to be an ongoing priority for those employers striving for excellence. However, research from Webonboarding reveals that a surprisingly high number of prosperous businesses are failing to on-board new employees effectively; as four in every ten office workers surveyed across the UK, USA, Australia and New Zealand admitted to having a serious problem after starting their new position. In turn, many new employees depart their role prematurely, despite their initial confidence in the company. This highlights the crisis frequently hitting HR departments following an initially successful recruitment process; which poses a distinct risk to positive financial projections and consistently impressive levels of employee retention.

Among those difficulties reported by new employees, were several easily rectifiable issues; including basic equipment, such as a computer or laptop, not being provided on their first day (42%) or a lack of full training (37%). Similarly, a vast number of employees cite difficulty fitting in with the company’s culture and employment pool as notable struggles – subsequently effecting their job performance.

As a result, 15% of these individuals left their position prematurely, whilst 79% stated that although they stayed, they would have settled into their role much quicker had there been a better process in place – possibly reaping rewards for their employer. It is therefore important for employers to engage with new staff, for there appears to be little point in attracting the best candidates if they are not sufficiently welcomed and cared for.

Ben Edwards, a qualified life coach and motivational speaker, outlines several easily-implemented recommendations for employers to ensure a seamless transition for new employees this New Year – in four key stages. It has been reported that 18% of people highlight a career change as their main New Year’s resolution; therefore, this is undeniably a critical time to ensure management protocols sufficiently support new staff.

  1. Pre-arrival:

There are several steps you can take in order to ease your employee’s transition prior to their arrival; send an offer letter and relevant information regarding available parking, prepare all necessary equipment including a computer and telephone, assemble new-hire paperwork, ensure a background check is completed and full training provided, and assign a “buddy”. This “buddy” should ideally be an experienced member of staff, able to act as a confidant and guide – allowing the new employee to feel supported and welcomed.

  1. First day:

On their first day, any new employee is bound to feel somewhat daunted by the pressure of impressing their colleagues and management – causing potential anxiety and pre-emptive stress. Ensure you make new employees feel as comfortable as possible; provide a tour, introduce them to current staff and schedule a coffee or lunch break with the employee. This will assure the individual feels appreciated; that they are more than a simple statistic, and the company genuinely cares for their wellbeing. With 14.7% of people in the workplace citing struggles with their mental health, including cases of stress and depression induced by role-related responsibilities, this is pivotal in promoting staff performance and longevity.

It is also important during an employee’s first day to outline all relevant rules and expectations; the more they know what to anticipate, the less inclined they are to feel daunted or misled. Provide all relevant information with regards to attendance standards, safety information, breaks and lunch hours, procedures for absence and your current sexual harassment policy.

  1. In the first two weeks:

During their first two weeks, check the employee is fitting in with colleagues and adapting well to the company culture. This may be achieved in a variety of ways; discuss any questions they may have, recommend places to eat, arrange social events such as a team dinner to promote interaction or simply stop by to check on them. These efforts will again emphasise an employer’s engagement, reaping rewards as staff more promptly feel able to flourish and utilise their skill base.

  1. At three months:

At three months, the employee and their appropriate manager or supervisor should be meeting to discuss their performance, expectations and any concerns either party may have. If an employee is struggling with the on-boarding process for any reason, feeling they have an opportunity to speak about this openly with their employer may make the difference between them staying within the company or departing.

It is notable that whilst these steps are easily implemented by an employer, additional methods extending beyond their means have proven to be invaluable in retaining new employees and boosting morale. Among these, lies the hiring of a motivational speaker. A third-party perspective provides a fresh, inspiring take on workplace culture and how to improve productivity for both new and existing employees.