Day One

So, you have found your perfect new hire! And after some negotiations, they have said yes to your job offer. Congratulations! It’s such an exciting time, for you and for them. So much possibility.    

Question: do you have an on-boarding plan and/or process? I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: showing them their workspace and closing the door isn’t going to cut it! To retain this wonderful new hire, you need to have a plan.  

A good on-boarding process will help get your new hire up to speed, increasing their productivity and effectiveness. Depending on your organization and the role, the on-boarding process can take anywhere from 90 days to a whole year. What the first days/weeks/months will look like will vary depending on your circumstances. But the first 30 days are CRITICAL. They are make or break in terms of employee engagement and retention. If things have not gone well in this crucial period, your new hire will likely be plotting their exit.  

So today, I want to focus on my non-negotiables for day one. The things that absolutely MUST be in place – to get things off on the right foot – both in terms of productivity and effectiveness, but more importantly, to retain this precious new hire. And it’s pretty simple.  

You as the hiring manager and supervisor need to be there on their first day. First week really. And you get to be in control of that! When deciding on your new hire’s first day, make sure that it is a day that you are available (ie not a day full of meetings or when you are on vacation). And when you are arranging their start time for their first day, make sure it is a time WELL after you usually get in. You don’t want your new hire to arrive before you (think running late/stuck in traffic situations).Make sure they know where they should come on that first day, and if it is the reception desk, let the receptionist know that a new hire is arriving at xxx time.    

When your new hire arrives, show them to their work space and then show them around the work environment. Make sure they know where the restrooms are. Introduce them to the team. They probably won’t remember everyone on the first day and that’s ok. Having a chart that shows who is who in the zoo will help with this. And if you are in a shift work environment or have a remote workforce, send out a ‘welcome to xxx” email to the entire team.  

Make sure your new hire’s work area, desk, computer, email addressare up and running. This is really importantBonus points for having things like name badges and business cards ready to goTheir work area needs to be ready for them.

You want everything about that first day to say: welcome, you are wanted, you are needed, we are excited to have you, you matter, this is going to be great. It’s the first step in an effective on-boarding plan. A plan that gets your new hire up to speed, increases their productivity and effectiveness, and crucially, increases the likelihood of retaining them.  

Because you went to great lengths to find the right person for the role, your team, your organization. And getting the first day right is critical, and also pretty simple.

Until next week,