In what’s being named the Great Resignation, employees are switching career paths, demanding more benefits, and valuing workplaces in a new way. As a result, the needs of high-value employees have changed.
With 95% of businesses struggling to fill job positions, the pressure is on to find and retain valuable new employees. With employees’ changing needs, there’s a significant disconnect between what HR thinks their new hires want and what they actually want.
The corporate world is forever-evolving, but the past couple of years have left most business executives scratching their heads. We’re walking in unfamiliar territory and need some guidance through the thick terrain of how to really welcome a new employee.
That’s what I’m taking you through in this Process Street article.
- Fostering a welcoming workplace culture for your new hire
- How to welcome a new employee: Best practices
- Process Street’s method for welcoming your new employee
Fostering a welcoming workplace culture for your new hire
You might be wondering why your new hire churn is still high. You’ve got your employee onboarding process nailed, you send welcome emails and personalized company merch, but your new employees still leave.
Research has found that there’s a considerable disconnect between what HR executives believe new employees want and what these employees really need. Even if you’re putting in the effort with your new employees, you might be missing the mark because of this disconnect.
Think of it this way: You’re not going to want to eat at a restaurant if they don’t have that special filet of steak you’ve been craving since forever. It doesn’t matter how nice the restaurant looks. Instead, you’re just going to go to a restaurant where they do have that filet of steak.
The same can be said for your new employees. They aren’t going to stick around if you’re not offering them what they really want. They’d rather head to a company that’s going to welcome them with that filet of steak. So, I’m going to show you how you give them that steak they’ve been craving.
Competitive benefits and compensation
It was forecasted that 74% of recruiters in 2019 would face hiring competition, with this number increasing post-pandemic. That’s a ton of competition, so before you can think about welcoming a new employee, you need to have a job seeker become an employee.
Not only do you need to adjust your onboarding efforts, you also need to adjust your recruiting practices. Money makes the world go round, so it’s no surprise that job seekers believe that compensation is one of the most important workplace values. A survey done by Paylocity also found that 45% of employees believe that high-quality health insurance is a vital benefit.
Even though HR executives don’t have complete control of these salaries and benefits, they are responsible for advocating the need for competitive compensation. HR managers supporting employees’ financial wellbeing, being transparent, and offering fair compensation practices is going to:
- Help you attract those high-value employees you want in your company;
- Make them already feel cared for and welcome in your team.
Friendly and engaging managers
Working at Process Street is a dream – and I’m not just saying that because I’m being paid to write this article. From the moment I began working here, I felt cared for and appreciated. My manager helped me through the onboarding process, had daily check-ins with me, and encouraged the whole team to welcome the newbie.
Even now, my manager is always present, tracking workloads, recognizing team progress, and growth. Sadly, manager engagement isn’t prioritized by HR executives even though it’s a vital step to employee retention.
So, how can you start prioritizing manager engagement?
- Include your managers into the hiring process. Let candidates know who they’re going to be working for during the interviewing phase. Having your managers meet with the candidates before providing a job offer also let’s these managers know if the candidate will be a good fit for the team.
- Start using process and performance management tools. These tools help set managers up for success. They empower managers to easily keep track of ongoing performance, document employee goals, and offer transparent performance reports.
A safe and inclusive workspace
You don’t want to work in a space where you don’t feel safe. My life at Process Street would be incredibly difficult if I felt I couldn’t reach out to my co-workers for help or explore different ideas.
Everyone wants to be in a safe work environment. I highly doubt you would rather have a job in the middle of a corporate warzone. Yet, this is even more true for candidates aged 18-29, which – you guessed it – is the biggest age group in the job market.
Paylocity found that a safe work environment is the third most valuable factor when picking a workplace. This ideal has only been heightened since the pandemic.
HR managers are responsible for maintaining safe working conditions, like replacing in-office (where possible) with hybrid and remote working models. However, a safe and inclusive workspace goes beyond physical safety.
Employees also want to work in welcoming and inclusive environments. They want to feel comfortable admitting mistakes and sharing ideas.
To achieve this, HR managers can:
- Adopt inclusive recruiting processes;
- Invest in diversity, equity, and inclusion training programs;
- Make sure recognition is given to employees.
How to welcome a new employee: Best practices
So, we already know that welcoming your new employee is important for engagement and retention. First impressions stick – you want yours to be a great one!
Here are a few tips that can help you really welcome your new employee into your welcoming workplace culture:
Offer a formal orientation
Being organized is one of the most crucial things you can do during your new hire’s first day. You want to welcome them into their new environment because, well, if you don’t, you can kiss them goodbye.
Your formal orientation should begin before their “real” first day. Present them with:
- Any necessary paperwork they need to complete beforehand;
- An employee handbook;
- Recommended reading list;
- First-day agenda;
- And anything else they might need to be best prepared for their first day.
The initial orientation phase can be daunting. There’s so many tasks that need to be done and not being organized can leave massive room for error. After all, we’re only human. Having a uniform process constructed with all the tasks you need can come in handy.
An orientation workflow can help you lay out everything you need to do before and during your new hire’s first day. You can get reminded if paperwork hasn’t been completed, inform your workforce about the new hire, and assign specific tasks for your new employee to complete.
Click to get the New Hire Onboarding Process Template!
Have one-on-one introductions
A new hire’s first day comes with a ton of new faces and names. Couple that with a completely new work environment and you’re undoubtedly overwhelmed. That’s why you should create multiple opportunities for your new hire to get to know everyone.
One-on-one introductions is one of these opportunities. Think of it like corporate speed dating without the romantic interest part. Your new hire can have a round of introductions to get to know each member of their new team better.
Having introduction tasks detailed in a workflow with the meeting instructions and respective team members can help your new hire get started with these intros. Simply, list the people they should have introductions with (line managers, co-workers, etc.) with instructions for these meetings and have your new hire assigned to the task.
Tour the office
A tour of the office is always on the agenda for a new hire’s first day. That doesn’t mean it needs to be boring. Your introduction to their new office space should be more than simply showing them where the copy machine and coffee machine is.
Rather, show them the places where their co-workers typically get together during their break time, offer a sense of what their office is all about, and help them set up their own workspace. This lets them get adjusted to their new office a lot faster.
As the HR manager, you might want to also have their assigned mentor accompany them on this office tour. Take them around the more general office spaces and then let their mentor (from the same department) conduct the more team-specific tour. By doing this, you’re already encouraging them to start building a rapport with team members.
Of course, this office tour is bound to differ in a remote working environment. That doesn’t mean you should completely disregard the tour. Instead, host a virtual tour of your essential workplace communication tools (like Slack) and go over the right protocol for communicating with team members.
For example, when I started working at Process Street, it was expressed very early on the value of over-communicating everything, twice. My orientation meeting with my line manager basically revolved around how to use Slack, communication best practices, and how we use all the super cool tools to plan, write, review, and publish our content.
Host a team icebreaker
Hosting a team icebreaker is another opportunity for your new hire to get to know the new faces around them. Schedule a meeting with your department to get together, abandon work (for a limited time), and just create a pleasant environment for your new hire to chat and build a rapport with their new team members.
We’ve just welcomed a new writer to our team. On his first day, we all got together in a team meeting specifically scheduled to welcome our new colleague. It not only helped him get a feel for the team, but it also helped us spark conversation with our writer.
For the icebreaker meeting, we played a quick game of Two Truths and One Lie. Before we knew it, we were already joking around with our new writer, building a valuable rapport. Taking the time for a team to get to know their new colleague makes the employee feel welcomed and valued, which is only going to boost retention.
Showcase the values and missions
Having a community within your company is vital. It boosts morale, teamwork, and efficiency. The sooner your new hire feels part of this community, the better. So, how can you do that?
Your community should be structured around your company values and missions. These are what you can present to your new hire. It displays your company culture and let’s your new employee know how they can fit into it.
During my employee onboarding, Process Street’s values and mission were shown to me before my first day. From these, I could tell that the work I was to do should align with making recurring tasks easier, all while practicing prioritization, acting like an owner, over-communicating everything (TWICE!). This already gave me some great insight into what was expected of me.
You should check in with them at the end of their first day. During these check-ins, make sure you understand how their experience was, if they have any concerns or questions, and thank them for all the work they’ve already done during their orientation.
Taking time out of your day to check in on them will have your new hire leaving the office feeling welcomed and supported in their new role. Having a check-in task (with a dynamic due date for the end of their first day) helps you ensure you don’t forget about scheduling this meeting.
Asking for your new hire’s opinion when it comes to the hiring and orientation process makes your new hire feel valued. Surveys are useful because you can also gain insight into what could be improved in your existing process.
I remember when I started working at Process Street, I was asked my opinion of the onboarding process. Not only was I asked, but my suggestions were considered, which makes me feel supported and valued. Asking your new hire their opinion is bound to have the same result.
Process Street’s method for welcoming your new employee
Welcoming a new employee can become quite chaotic if not organized right. Breaking each task down into and building a workflow is where you can alleviate such stress. Process Street helps you do this.
With Process Street’s no-code functionality, you can construct workflows detailing each step of your new employee’s first day. You can also assign team members who are responsible for welcoming the new employee and apply dynamic due dates to these tasks to ensure the tasks get completed when you need them to. Once this workflow is built, you can focus on giving your new employee the warmest welcome possible.
Sign up to start using Process Street’s free onboarding templates or start constructing your own.
What’s the most important thing you do to welcome your new hires? Let us know in the comments.
Grace is a content writer with a thirst for knowledge and coffee. You'll find her reading in a small café or singing at a rundown jazz bar when she's not overconsuming coffee or compartmentalizing her thoughts into a blog post.