It can take weeks or even months to find the best employee for your company. It’s surprising that after spending so much time, many employers fail to follow through by creating a quality first-day experience. According to a recent Inc article, more than 40% of employees who leave a company voluntarily do so within six months of being hired. A new hire’s first day at a job can set the tone for the rest of her employment and make the difference between having to restart the hiring search or nurturing a great long-term employee.
This article gives seven tips for making sure your employee has a comfortable first day. Two of the most important being:
In an informal poll, some of the most frequent complaints about first days were a lack of anything to do, and surprisingly, a lack of any place to sit! Many people told stories about coming to work only to find out no one knew they were starting, being asked to build their own chair, having to clean out a former employee’s desk, (or in one case, a supply closet that was being turned into an office), and most nerve-wracking of all, sitting in a corner of the Executive Director’s office while the ED and the accountant discussed getting a loan to make payroll that week. Make sure your office is set up for a new employee (and can pay that employee), and have at least a small project that they can start right away.
Assign Them a Buddy
More than one employee has spent their first day filling out paperwork and then … not talking to anyone. One woman was placed in a desk so far removed from everyone else, that when the rest of the office left for the day, she was left behind. As a bonus, she was locked in and had to climb a security gate in order to get out. Before a new employee starts, assign him a buddy who will show him where the bathroom is, which kitchen has the good coffee, and make sure that if he gets locked in a stairwell, someone notices (also a true story).
The hiring process does not end with making an offer. Make sure you’re as prepared for your employee’s first day as you were for her interview.