New Staff Induction

Date: 2nd January 2014

If you’re an owner of a small or medium business the New Year will no doubt bring changes, and given the transient nature of our region, and the seasonality of many of our industries, these changes will likely include new staff, perhaps a sizable turnover of staff.  Make the most of this situation but upgrading your new staff induction processes and ensure they’re not left flailing and sent unknowingly into your workplace vortex.

It is important to have a sound induction procedure in place so that new employees are made to feel at ease in your environment.  By positively welcoming recruits into your business and sharing basic but essential information, you are helping newbies become effective sooner.

The Basics: 

Whether you are aware of it or not, your workplace is filled with industry jargon.  This may be the names of suppliers, procedures or simply day to day tasks that have been abbreviated or nicknamed over time.  Have a breakdown of these available for new employees including a brief overview of what they stand for and how each fits into the company.

Be sure too, to advise newcomers of meeting times and meeting areas so they know where to go.  Ensure that introductions are made to the rest of the team.  A good way to do this is to put on a welcome morning tea.

Handover Period: 

This is one of the most important elements in an induction plan.  Each role within the business is different so it is best to ensure this is done from previous employee to new recruit.  If the role is a new one, look at outsourcing human resource groups to establish what the role entails and how best to ensure adequate training is done.

Company Rules: 

It can be embarrassing for a new employee to come on board and do something they’ve done previously in another workplace, only to be told down the track that this behaviour is not acceptable.  Lay down the ground rules.  This can include such things as mobile phone usage, accepting personal calls and use of the kitchen area or staffroom.

An induction pack is a good idea for new employees.  This can be put together by someone in your team, but remember to review it regularly as policies often change.  By ensuring you have an adequate plan in place, you and new recruits will establish confidence from the get go.

So, where do you start?  How to put together an induction programme

Putting together an induction programme doesn’t need to be tricky.  There may be specific elements that relate to your company that you’ll need to outline, but here are some basic things you should include to get you started:

Any legal requirements (for example, some Health and Safety training is obligatory)

  • Any regulatory requirements such as payroll and bank account details, IRD forms and KiwiSaver applications
  • An introduction to terms and conditions such as holiday entitlement or how to make expense claims
  • A basic introduction to the company, and how each particular department fits in
  • A guided tour of the building and introductions to key members of staff
  • Specific job-role training
  • The company’s vision and mission statements

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