How to onboard a new employee

Employee induction process

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New employee onboarding guide for managers and employers

How do you onboard a new employee successfully? How to make them feel welcome, set expectations, help them get familiar with the business and hit the ground running? When you hire a new person you’re usually very excited. You have high hopes for gaining more freedom and accelerating the growth of your business. New employee onboarding is the key to good relationships and high performance at work. Here are my tips for new employee induction. 

Induction for new staff

This is a process for introducing new employees. Find out how to give a new hire a great start, help them connect with the team, be positively influenced by the culture and increase staff retention. 

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Employee onboarding process

How to onboard a new employee

1. Induction session

As a leader you need to sell the big dream and company purpose to the new team member. They need to get familiar with the company values and know where you’re going. At the beginning you also need to show them the company structure and where they belong. 

Tip: Have an induction checklist and go through it during the session. At the end of the induction session get them to sign it to confirm what you’ve covered and give them a copy. People remember better what they sign, plus they will be able to review it later and retain more. 

2. Training

What training do you need to provide to a new hire? No matter the business function, there should be a training system for each of them as well as a job manual covering each position. From such a handbook a new person should be able to learn everything about their role – all systems, procedures and best practices. The manual has to be very detailed – if the place burnt down to the ground and there was nothing else left, the new employee would be able to learn and re-create everything related to their job. Obviously, the goal isn’t to avoid training, they will still get training and learn from others, but having a job handbook improves the onboarding process massively and the new hirees perform way better. 

3. Goals

Set specific goals every 90 days. Describe what performance you expect and how you measure it. Specify what success will look like in their role. They need to feel that they are achieving something. If you do this right, they will be more productive and less likely to quit. 

4. Buddy system

Assign a buddy for the new employee, not a manager, but a colleague in a similar role. If the new hire doesn’t make a friend within a couple of weeks, they will be very likely to leave. 

5. The buddy role

Obviously, you need to talk to the buddy first and guide them on what to do. Define the buddy role, this can include: checking in daily with the newbee, taking them out for lunch once a week, inviting to employee outings etc. For virtual teams it can be a weekly call. Having a buddy is a great way of integrating new starters effectively and improving employee retention. 

6. One-on-ones

To build your relationship with the new employee, schedule one-on-ones with them. This is actually my favourite way to connect with my team. They need to have direct access to you. The first one-on-one, after the first week, can be very informal, just ask them how things are going. Ask them if they’ve noticed something that could be done better and be open to feedback. Your one-one-ones should be more frequent at the beginning – weekly in the first month, fortnightly in the second and monthly after that. 

Tip: Schedule them right at the time when they start, so you won’t forget and they know what to expect. 

Final notes

As I mentioned before, I think that onboarding new employees plays a vital role of future cooperation for both sides. You want to get it right, because you won’t get the second chance. I hope this helps you to find your own ways to create a positive new employee onboarding experience, increase staff retention and inspire them to give their best.

What is your employee induction strategy? How do you onboard new hires? Share in the comments. 

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