Tips & Guides

Understanding and mastering the headhunting industry

If you are a small or medium business, you mostly likely do not have an onboarding process or program. Even if you are a large organization and have an onboarding program, you affect the success of this program. Whether you are the hiring manager or assist the hiring manager, it is important to a smooth transition of the new hire. Onboarding refers to successfully integrating a new employee into the organization. This ensures that they learn and integrate into the culture, acquire the skills and knowledge and become a productive member of your team sooner rather than later. There are a number of things that you can do to ensure that they feel ready and welcome.

  1. The first thing to do is take them around and introduce them to their co-workers; not just their team members. It is important that you arrive before them to welcome them. Some companies have a sign at reception welcoming them. Even though they might do that for every new employee, it still feels special.
  2. Take time to go over your expectations of where they need to be at different milestones ie at the end of this week, month 1 etc. Many candidates report not knowing what their small goals are. They are given annual goals but are not sure where they are supposed to be by the end of their probationary period. Meet with them throughout to ensure that they are going in the right direction. The worse thing that could happen is that you tell them at the end of the 3 months or 6 months that they are far off of their goals, when they have run out of time to fix them.
  3. If you can, assign a buddy or mentor. This accomplishes two things; it gives them a peer to ask questions of and it gives you the opportunity to give a performing employee some extra duties. It gives you the opportunity to reinforce certain messages such as “our manager is a stickler for being on time”.
  4. If you can, have them spend some time with different departments with whom they will eventually work. It’s always easier to work with other departments when you know them. It was also give them a view of the big picture. You want to ensure that you put them with the positive performing employees of these departments.

Candidates report an overall positive experience when there is an onboarding program. It does not have to be elaborate but it should make the candidate feel that you have been waiting for them. Create a checklist for yourself to ensure that everything that needs to get done, gets done and no matter how experience the new hire is, skip no steps. The clearer the expectations, the sooner the can become reality and leads to overall increased productivity

by Dawn Williams, President of Sirius Personnel

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