Starting a new role at a company, for any of us in our career, can be exciting and simultaneously, daunting. With heaps of stuff to learn about your new business, you often feel like there’s never enough time to possibly know everything so you can get properly started in your new role.
We know companies have a legal duty to provide the standard inductions, like health and safety and watching lots of online tutorials – and it can feel indoctrinating. But, a good induction process goes well beyond that – it’s about making your staff feeling inspired about what they’re about to become part of, and that can’t solely be done by lengthy online training packs or manuals.
Meet and Greets
It’s expected that as a new starter, we have a flurry of emails welcoming us to the team and wider business. But what about those face-to-face or virtual meetings? With the pandemic changing the way we work, these have become even more less of a motivator for staff to include in their induction programmes.
One-to-one meetings, virtual or face-to-face, are a great way for new staff to get to put faces to names and build rapport in their first month. After all – strong internal relationships help staff become more productive (happy staff, happy clients). A one-to-one can be effective with just scheduling a short 30 minutes via Teams, or if you’re in the office, a face-to-face – both with a beverage.
They’re also great to use for ice-breakers to get to know your team – you may find out your colleague is a cat-lover just like you or doesn’t like Christmas, so there’s some common ground found within your colleagues which helps you get to know them better.
Who you meet typically includes team members and in some organisations, a chance to meet the senior leaders of the business – if it can be done, this is a great way of cross-collaboration and staff to further understand the business’ success and what they’re now a part of.
Being a newbie can be very nerve-racking for many staff, even in senior roles. Having a day where new staff in the business come together can help people feel less nervous and that they’re not the only new person. This can be particularly effective in larger businesses where multiple staff are recruited within the same month.
A good idea could be to host a day where they take part in fun, ice-breaking activities (people bingo, Pictionary, general knowledge quiz). This gives new staff a chance to show their individual personalities and feel more relaxed about their new workplace. Many of the traditional ice-breaking corporate activities can also be done virtually, if it’s not possible for everyone to meet up in person. Poltkin and Chandler also tell us that by new staff understanding that they are not ‘on their own’ is also likely to make people feel happier in their new job and therefore less likely to leave.
Many businesses put together a personalised welcome pack for new staff which is typically a bag of goodies, like a smart note book, a nice mug, a fancy pen, candy – all of which most of us love.
It’s common for many staff to simply have a job description, but not understand exactly what’s expected from them to be successful. This can actually be a deal-breaker in whether the individual gets bored or disinterested if they’re not fully clear of why they’re in the company or the value their role adds. Understanding how their role fits into the wider mission of the company can help individuals to feel more aligned with the company’s overall goals and thus, more productive.
Why Does This Matter?
According to the CIPD, when it comes to inductions for employers, benefits include reducing turnover and absenteeism, and increasing employee commitment and job satisfaction. But in the CIPD’s recent resourcing and talent planning survey, only 28% of organisations have improved their induction process to enhance retention, thus suggesting more organisations should further focus on their induction programmes when it comes to reducing turnover.
22% of new recruits leave companies within the first six months, and a poor or ineffective induction could be a driving factor (we all know that high turnover is never positive for reputation, so can thus make it increasingly challenging to then re-attract new staff).
GreatwithTalent mentions that an effective employee induction and recruitment process can lower early attrition rates, thereby saving companies and hiring managers the cost and time in replacing.
It might be time-consuming and require resources in the business to implement a good induction, but in return, the business can expect to spark greater morale, commitment from their new hires, dedication to the role and the likelihood of them wanting to stay with the organisation and progress within the team.
Individuals may feel they don’t have the time to meet with staff or set up induction sessions – but it’s certainly more time-consuming when it comes to then having to re-train and re-attract new staff. It’s also more costly when productivity starts to decrease, which can be a result of a poor or lack of an effective induction.
Another motivator? Getting other colleagues involved with induction training and implementing sessions always impresses – think developing skills, leadership and career progression.