Onboarding New Hires

Onboarding a new employee and their first 90 days can be crucial to both of you. You spend so much time and effort finding the right people.However, what happens when they show up on Day One? How do you handle employees’ first few hours and their decisive first 90 days on the job?

You won’t get a second chance to make that vital first impression. Yet many workplaces simply throw new hires to the wolves with a “sink or swim” strategy. Not smart! Employees who participate in a structured onboarding program are 69% more likely to remain with the company after three years compared to those who have no training.

You need a plan in place, nothing complicated, just simple training. Therefore, this article attempts to lay out a straightforward, practical 90-day strategy to welcome employees. It gets them up to speed and helps them become fully engaged. The result: Better performance and stronger retention.

Some ideas to put into your planning:

  • The 6 critical steps of onboarding and how to implement them.
    • In all sessions, give the new employee a voice.Let him/her ask as many questions as are needed.
  • First Day:
    • Welcome – good old-fashioned hospitality – coffee, donuts, juice, and a greeting by the whole staff or the important leaders from the work areas where the employee(s) will be assigned to work
    • Company Orientation:
      • Culture and Values – take time to help the new employee completely understand the kind of place he/she is working.
      • Basic administrative activities (you know, get them on the payroll)
      • Benefits Overview – impress on the employees that the value of their employment with the company is far more than just the hourly pay or salary they are receiving
      • Handbook review – these are the guidelines you set forth for all employees.
    • Host them for a luncheon at least on the first day of the on-boarding
    • Company Orientation Continued:
      • Company overview – what does the company make, who are the customers, and what do each of the departments do
    • Compliance Training: harassment, violence in the workplace, ethics. Safety
  • Second Day:
    • Skill Level Training:
      • It’s time to move the employees to their respective work areas.
        • Start this phase of training with an overview of the job(s), the skills they will be learning, the performance criteria, and performance reviews which will be given
        • Introduce the new employees to the team members where they will be working
        • Give a tour of the work area and show how their work and portions of the overall process affect the outcome of what the company does
    • First 90 Days:
      • Assign the new employee to his/her trainer/mentor and explain the training process.Provide all documentation necessary for understanding the job, the skills, the quality requirements,
      • Provide step by step plans for the training process to include release points for determining if the employee is being successful
      • As training progresses take time to explain how each step being taught fits into the bigger picture.Impress on the new hire the value of meeting quality requirements.Also, never leave out the importance of communication both to and from the employee.Make proper and appropriate communication a requirement of the job.
      • Conduct performance reviews (documented) at 30 days, 60 days, and finally at 90 days.Instill in the employee the understanding that a reasonable amount of time will be given to accomplish the skills necessary
      • Finally, conduct the 90-day performance review with the understanding that the employee demonstrates the ability to “work at speed” and perform all quality requirements

What matters to new employees and what they want to know from you:

  • Obviously the number one thing a new employee wants to know is how he will fit into the new environment
  • He will want to know pay and benefits
  • He will want to know there are measures of understanding in place in the expectations set forth on job performance
  • He will want to know when to expect his training to end, and when he is considered a regular employee.

Consider this: Research shows that almost 50% of Millennials plan to switch employers this year because their expectations about the job contrasted so greatly with their actual experience. A smart 90-day onboarding plan would stop such turnover in its tracks.

So, stop spending more time on your company picnic than you do on your onboarding process. Unlock the secrets to create a simple but effective 90-day onboarding program that will help you achieve two of your most important HR goals – higher productivity and lower turnover.

This article is thanks to Don Swift. You can check out his website here: