There are few things in life that are more exciting than starting a new job. It’s a new step in your career, a new work environment, new people to meet and new things to learn. It’s an opportunity for growth. But it can also be extremely stressful. Have you taken the right step in switching companies? Are you going to fit in with your colleagues? Can you handle the new responsibilities that come with your position?
As a business, you have the opportunity to reassure your new hires from the moment their contract is signed, to their first day and beyond. The six simple steps below will help to ease the stress for new employees, and see them entirely focused on the excitement that comes with a new role.
6 Steps To Set Your New Hire Up For Success
The process of preparing for your new hire and setting them up for success in their role starts the moment that they sign the dotted line and accept a position with your company. One of the biggest mistakes that businesses make is leaving the preparations to the last minute. All this results in is added stress for yourself and your teams, and added stress for your new human, as they arrive on their first day to find you unsure of where they should sit and what they should be doing.
So let’s take a look at the steps you can take, in the order that you should take them:
1. Order Their Hardware
As soon as you hire a new employee, the first step that you should take is sorting out the hardware and equipment that they’re going to need.
- Are they going to be working from their own laptop, or are you going to provide them with one?
- Do they have a quality mouse and keyboard?
- Do they have a screen, and do they need a second one?
- Do they have a quality headset?
- Do they have a quality webcam?
- Do they have reliable connectivity?
- Do they have a UPS, generator or inverter system for backup power?
This last one is particularly important if you are working with employees based in South Africa, since power cuts in the form of loadshedding have to be dealt with on a daily basis.
Unlike a company email address or access to cloud platforms, which can often be set up in a manner of minutes, hardware takes time to source. Buying hardware is almost never as simple as walking into a store and picking a machine up off the shelf. You want to find the best quality devices at the best possible prices, which often means shopping around, getting quotes, and waiting for approval from your Accounts team. And then you still need to wait for the devices to be delivered.
That’s why sorting out hardware is a critical first step to be dealt with as early as possible. This guarantees that by the time your new hire starts, they will have everything that they need to work efficiently and effectively.
2. Communicate, Communicate, Communicate
Most new employees aren’t going to be able to start their new role at the drop of a hat. There are notice periods that need to be worked through, which can be as short as a week or as long as three months. It’s important that no matter how long the wait between the contract being signed and your new human starting their first day of work, you keep communicating.
Communication will help you get to know the person who you’ll be working with a bit better, and it gives you the opportunity to show them how excited you are about them joining the team. But more than that, consistent communication will assure them that they have made the right choice in changing companies.
The worst start to a job that I ever experienced involved me agreeing to join a team a full month before my start date, and then hearing nothing back from them until 2pm on my first day. And in a world where remote positions (like this one was) are becoming ever more popular and feasible, there is no bigger mistake that a business can make than forgetting to communicate with new employees. It leaves a sense of having been scammed – that the role they’ve agreed to take isn’t legitimate, or is unimportant in the grander scheme of things.
Here are a few communication starters that will go a long way towards making your new employees feel at ease, and see them getting excited about their new role:
- Schedule a call before their start date to get to know them better as a person.
- Send regular update emails on the progress in setting up their address, permissions and acquiring their hardware.
- Let them know what to expect on their first day, and how they can prepare for it. Include details of any apps or solutions that they should download or install.
3. Prepare The Team
It’s rare for a new hire to work in isolation. There are always going to be others that they will work closely with. But plenty of businesses make the mistake of only letting existing team members know that someone new will be joining them days or hours before their arrival.
By letting your team in on the ‘secret’ well ahead of time, you can boost excitement around the (home) office as well as making your new hire’s first day a success. The role that is being filled will often be alleviating stress from existing team members’ shoulders, particularly if it’s a new position, one that hasn’t been filled for quite some time, or one that a longstanding colleague is leaving.
By sharing your excitement at the prospect of hiring someone new, your teams will share in the excitement and look forward to welcoming your new human with open arms, rather than feeling like they’ve been dropped in the deep end, or are the last to learn about changes.
4. Start The Onboarding Process
We’ve spoken before about the multiple benefits of onboarding new team members, making sure that they have the access that they need, ensuring that their devices (whether their own or company provided) are set up correctly, have the right apps installed, and that they’re secured against threats as far as possible.
I won’t go into the details of it too much here – if you really are interested in learning more about the value of onboarding, check out our blog on the subject. But I will say that onboarding doesn’t necessarily need to begin after your new hire has arrived. Setting up email addresses and permissions on your cloud platforms can often be done well in advance, ensuring that everything is set up and ready as soon as your new human starts.
And if your new hire is going to be taking over an existing role, you will already have a good idea of the apps they might need and the permission groups that they will need to be added to. Ensuring that these apps and tools are already set up on the device that you’re providing them with (if they aren’t going to be using their own) will make it far easier for them to jump straight into their new role.
5. Introduce Them To Your Company Culture
Your company culture is the core of your business – what separates you from every competitor and what makes you who you are. Making sure that every single employee not only knows about your company culture, but embraces it as their own is going to see your business growing, and is critical to your success. And making it one of the first things your new hires learn about when they join your company goes a long way to helping them embrace your culture.
If you have documentation about your culture – your rules, your rituals, and what makes working for you an absolute pleasure – be sure to send this through to your new hires as soon as they sign the dotted line. Once again, this will help them to feel like part of the time right off the bat, and will see them getting excited about working with you and your teams.
6. Kick Off Training Early
Every business has their own way of doing things. By scheduling time for training from day one, you can make sure that your new hires learn about your way of operating straight away. This will see them adapting to their new work environment quickly, and feeling more prepared for their role.
This being said, there is a fine line between training a new team member and providing too much information far too quickly. There’s a big difference between handing a new hire a binder filled with page upon page of rules and techniques, and walking them through some of the challenges that they might face and how they should handle them.
Humans also learn in very different ways. Some people prefer hands-on experience, while others are more book-savvy, preferring to read through the ways to do things before getting their hands dirty. This is where the communication that I mentioned earlier will come in handy once again. If you have already learned more about your new hire and the way that they operate, you will be better prepared to train them in a way that will see them succeeding, rather than following a strict regimen that may see them becoming confused or overwhelmed.
How Can Solid Systems Help?
When you work with Solid Systems, you’ll quickly find that we’re more than just your average IT company. We want to see you succeeding, and part of this is working with you to onboard new users, train them in the technologies that they’ll be using, and set them up for success.
We do so much more than IT support, though it is an area that we’re exceptional in as well. We’re all about enabling your humans to live their best lives. So when you are bringing a new hire onboard, get in touch with Solid Systems for hardware procurement, onboarding, training and more, and see the real difference that working with a sophisticated Managed IT Services provider can make.
Want to see the difference for yourself? Book a consult with us today.