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How to ensure your new recruits have a great first week

It might not be quite as scary as turning up for your first day of school with the wrong lunchbox, but starting a new job can still be a daunting experience.

Even for experienced staff, there’s a lot to learn in a short time frame and many people feel as though they’ve been thrown in at the deep end. Studies show that around 40 million people in the US struggle with workplace anxiety at some point, and there’s no scarier time than the first week. But good managers can alleviate nerves, pressure and stress by taking some simple steps to improve the overall experience of their new employees.

Start early

Before they turn up for their first day, it’s important to give new employees an idea of what they can expect. From videos on the company culture to interactive games, there are lots of ways to engage with new recruits before they’ve even set foot through the door. Ensure that they’re offered support with contracts, and provide a phone number so they can call for help if they need any advice or assistance. By the time they’re ready for the first day, they should already be one step ahead with paperwork and have some insight into how the company ticks.

Provide mentorship support

New recruits often have a lot of questions, but there’s not always enough time for answers. If you’re able to assign a mentor to each new starter, there will always be someone on hand for advice and support. Increasing retention in the long-term, studies from Deloitte show that almost 70% of those who stay with an organisation had a mentor to help them when they first started. Developing that mentorship relationship from the very beginning will show new employees that a company is dedicated to their growth and development.

Induction interviews

If you want to find out what your new recruits really want, you’ll have to ask them. During the first week of a new job, your employees are likely to be enthusiastic and excited about their new role. Take time out to talk to them one-on-one to kickstart a productive employee/manager relationship. Investing early on not only gives a better impression of the company, it enables you to get a good idea of how you’ll be able to develop them personally and professionally to help them fulfil their potential.

Organise a team event

Who doesn’t love an office social? Make sure your new recruits feel involved from the moment they join by organising a team event. In the first week, it’s wise to arrange something relaxed, such as an outing or wine tasting that will put your new team members at ease. Even something as simple as Friday night drinks will make them feel like an appreciated part of the company right from the word go.

Make onboarding a priority

Onboarding and orientation is far more than making sure your new recruits know where the toilets are. As well as supporting people to better understand their roles, the process enables them to really immerse themselves in company culture and engage with your core values from the outset. Using interactive strategies like apps and technology can support your goals, by ensuring that new employees can engage on a personal level. Some 69% of employees are likely to stay at an organisation if they experienced good onboarding, so it’s an area that’s worth investing in.

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