Creating a Welcoming New Hire Experience

by Allan Peretz

New employees who attended a well-structured onboarding orientation program were 69 percent more likely to remain at a company up to three years. Unfortunately, many companies don't do a lot to help their new employees shake first day jitters or to help them get on board quickly with the ins and outs of their new position.

In order to make your new employees feel a part of the team and up to speed, you need to ditch the old mindset that handing them a stack of papers and an employee handbook is enough.

So what should you be doing?

Read this article to find out how to knock the socks off your newest team member by implementing these new employee orientation tips.

1. Keep the Housekeeping Tasks to a Minimum

Knowing where the bathrooms and break rooms are, understanding the employee handbook, and completing tax forms are all essential parts of starting a new job. But should you really be spending a whole day going over these things? Absolutely not.

Give your new employee a quick tour of the office and instead of sequestering them in a room to read their handbook, give it to them to review over the next few days (or few weeks) and encourage them to ask any questions that may arise.

Get your employee to spend time with the team in their first days! This will help not only the employee, but also others who are curious about the new person on the team. It will also give the employee a chance to better understand the basics of your culture.

2. Nail That First Impression

Obviously, your new employee wants to make a good first impression, but so should you! This process can start even before your new employee walks in the door. Keep in touch with them via email before their first day, and let them know exactly what's on the agenda for that first day.

Also, make sure all of your other employees are aware of when the new person is starting. Encourage coworkers who will be interacting with this employee regularly to drop by and say "hello" as well.

Finally, make absolutely certain that the logistics are covered. Nothing will make a new employee more miserable than spending the first week without their computer, phone, or corporate card.

3. Use Storytelling

You don't just want an employee who's willing to work for you, you want an employee who's excited to work for you!

Making sure your employees are happy and excited about their work is super important, as according to new Gallup survey, unhappy workers are costing U.S. companies over $500 billion.

So how do you get this excitement going from the first day? Through storytelling!

Sharing stories that reinforce your company's mission and culture will help build excitement and trust among new workers and will help make your company seem more relatable and human.

4. Set Small Goals During New Employee Orientation

It's never too early to get your new employee into the competitive spirit. Setting some small initial goals on the first day will help your new employee quickly gain confidence as they realize the strength of their contributions. It can also help them earn respect amongst their new coworkers.

Consider putting the new employee on a task that needs fresh thinking. Chances are, there's a bit of groupthink within your own walls and the new person should be able to help you see things from a different perspective.

Don't forget to recognize your employee's achievements when these goals are reached. You can even give them small awards to help boost morale!

5. Set Your New Employee Up With a Mentor

As we all know, management can sometimes be intimidating! Set your new employee up with a mentor on the first day who can be their go-to person through their first 90 or so in office. Often times these relationships flourish and end up lasting even longer.

Make sure the mentor is a "safe harbor" - in other words, the mentor should be someone from a different team and outside the employees direct management chain so that they can safely and confidentially ask questions, discuss concerns, or seek input.

Taken a crack at implementing any of these strategies? Drop us a comment (, we'd love to hear about your success!