LEADERSHIP / NOV. 03, 2014
version 3, draft 3

How to Induct New Team Members

An induction program for new employees is very important for any organization. However, induction is more than just filling out personnel forms, being introduced to colleagues or knowing where the washrooms are. Proper induction programs involve imparting technical skills, as well as teaching new employees about the organization’s history and corporate values. In addition, it should also offer information about the people who run the organization.

A good induction program will help new team members to settle in faster and to align their goals with the organization’s goals. In addition, it is likely to result in higher productivity and lower turn-over rates. However, new employees that have not been inducted properly are likely to get bored, frustrated or overwhelmed, and might eventually leave the organization.      

Here are the steps to a proper induction:

Planning

Before the new employee shows up, you need to take time to plan for their arrival. Ask yourself the following questions:

  • What first impression do you want to create for the new team member?
  • What information does the new team member require concerning their work environment?
  • What is the best way of introducing the new team member to his/her colleagues?
  • What procedures and policies should new team members know about when they join the organization?
  • What facilities, such as equipment or furniture, would the new employee need to work effectively?
  • Who can be assigned to assist the new employees when they need help?

To gauge the effectiveness of your induction program, you could consider getting feedback from recent recruits. Their opinion of the orientation process will give you an idea of what can be improved.

Execution

Here are some guidelines for orientation when the new employee arrives:

  • Give the new team member a tour of your premises while introducing them to their colleagues. Show them where the meeting rooms, bathrooms and fire exits are
  • If they drive, show the new employees their parking space. In addition, provide essentials such as staff ID cards and computer passwords
  • Take the new employees through the company procedures and policies. They should be informed about their working hours, off days, pay cycle and lunch breaks
  • Let them know about the probationary period as well as the performance appraisal process
  • Ask the new employee to complete the necessary employment documentation
  • Go through the job description in detail and make sure the new team member understands what will be expected of them. Remember to mention the key performance indications for the job
  • Depending on the nature of the job, it would also be important to offer health and safety training
  • Let them know who they will be working with and who they can approach for technical support
  • Provide the telephone numbers or extensions of all the important contact people in the organization
  • Assign a mentor that will assist the new employee as they settle into their role

Conclusion

Proper orientation takes time, commitment and energy. However, it ultimately yields great returns for the new employee, the team and the organization in general.

Image: Flickr, Thynk - Coaching en Alicante

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