10 Tips for Successfully Onboarding New Employees

Hiring great employees can be hard. However, turning them into great team members can be even harder. Here are 10 tips to help you make sure that those high potential hires hit the ground running.

  1. Make sure that you have an employee handbook ready and up-to-date

All businesses should have a company handbook that explains rules, routines and important guidelines for employees. Each new employee should receive new employee forms and an up-to-date copy of your company handbook that they may keep. You should also have other copies readily available in the office.

  1. Create their personnel file

Make sure that they have a HR file where their important information can be kept. This can include but should not be limited to: tax paperwork, medical notes, feedback notes, employment eligibility etc. Reviewing the file early can set a precedent of documentation and review.

  1. Have all paperwork ready

On their first day, make sure that you have all onboarding documents and forms ready for them to fill out and sign. These will include tax forms, personal information and more.

  1. Ensure that they are ready to work

Make sure they have profiles set-up with the POS, Homebase, and any other tools they need before they arrive for training. Create their Homebase account and have them accept their invitation in-person. Homebase will let them know when they are working and allow them to request time-off, so that you can set schedule expectations early. Homebase also includes a messenger, so that they can be in the communication flow from the start.

  1. Write them a simple “Guide to your First Day”

This simple little letter should give basic tips and the main guidelines for a successful first day. This will also be a great time to give them names and contact information for the people that they will be working with the most. (Homebase makes this contact list available online, and provides free messaging to make communication even easier.) Make the letter warm and welcoming but also short and to the point.

  1. Arrange for Mentorship

Choose a successful employee who has been with you for a while to train a new employee and be their mentor. Tell them that they will be helping the “newbie” and explain your expectations of them. You may also want to give the mentor a checklist of things to cover with your new employee. Be prepared for the fact that your mentor employee will be pulled away from their usual duties to help their mentee and accommodate for that as much as possible.

  1. Create a checklist of job duties and ensure that they are trained on all store activities

At the very least, your new employee should get a checklist of information about their job. What is expected of them? How often should they take breaks? Who should they contact if problems arise? Those types of things should be explained in detail so that there is no confusion. In the best case scenario you should have an orientation with new employees but, if that is impossible, be sure that they have all of the information that they need about their job.

  1. Give them feedback within 48 hours

Give them 48 hours to try their hand with the checklist. After that point, go over the checklist with them again and discuss what they have achieved and what you would like to see them improve on.

  1. Introduce them to their new team

Make sure that everyone they will be working with has an opportunity to meet and speak with them. Making the new hire feel welcome on day 1 can build confidence during the difficult training period. It will also give them another outlet for questions.

  1. Explain any “unwritten rules,” routines and jargon

Make sure that they know the things that aren’t so obvious. For example, if they are working in a retail store, they may not know that you typically welcome every customer with a certain greeting so make that clear. If you use specific terms that they may never have heard before, explain those as well.

With these 10 tips, you will be well on your way to onboarding your employees with ease. Most people are ready and willing to work hard if they are clear on what is expected of them and provided the proper feedback. Happy hiring!

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