So, you’ve got a new hire. Congrats! Now, how do you make sure they’re successful from day one?
New hire training is key. It can be time-consuming, but there are ways to make it an enjoyable experience for both the employer and the employee.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to help, including what to do before they start, during their first few days and even ongoing training down the road.
New hire training before the first day
Start planning before your new hire’s first day to ensure a long-lasting positive impact. A great onboarding experience increases the likelihood of employees staying for at least three years.
Step 1: Build a new employee training plan
A plan for training new employees identifies tasks they need to know, tools, software and supplies they will need, and how long each task will take.
A well-designed plan can ensure that your new hires have everything they need to hit the ground running. It’s also a great way to get a handle on their strengths, weaknesses and interests so you can assign them meaningful work from the start.
Step 2: Set up access to systems, tools and equipment
Make sure that your new hire has access to all the systems, tools and equipment they will need to do their jobs. This includes everything from email accounts to computers and usernames and passwords for any programs.
If they need access to a physical space, such as an office or supply shed, make an access plan. Will you give them copies of keys or share door passcodes? Or will there be a communal key that everyone must share and return to a designated spot?
Step 3: Send your new hire a schedule for the first day
This is the first day of their new job, so it’s important to provide an introduction to your company and culture. One of the best tips for new employee training is to send them a schedule for the first day. Here are some things to include:
- Starting time
- Parking options (if there is no parking lot)
- Dress code (casual or business casual)
- Supervisor’s (or your) direct line
- Nearby coffee and lunch options
You may also want to send your employee handbook if you have one. They can get familiar with it and prepare questions.
Day one of new hire training
The first day of new employee training is the most important. Spend the time getting to know each other and doing some initial training.
Step 4: Introduce company history and policies
For a small business, the company history is an important piece of onboarding. Review how the company got started, its mission statement and the products or services it provides.
You should also explain policies you have and employee benefits, such as:
- Workplace rules (hours, breaks, lockers, keys)
- Remote work requirements (if relevant)
- Nondisclosure and confidentiality agreements
- Types of leave (sick, vacation)
- Insurance (medical, life, short-term disability)
Give your new hire copies of the files, either digitally or in print, so they can refer to the information down the road.
Step 5: Meet and greet other team members
Now that your new hire is up to speed on the company basics, introduce them to other staff members.
They can learn more about the company and their role to get a feel for what it will be like to work there. It can also help them feel welcomed and more involved in the team.
Step 6: Start role-specific training
This is where the new hire plan comes into play. Review each step and explain the timeline for each item. You can also explain more about their role, what they’ll be doing and how a typical day is structured.
Set your new team member up for success by letting them know their responsibilities and your expectations. Make sure they know who to talk to if they have questions or need guidance.
The first few days of new employee training set the stage for an excellent experience with your company. But ongoing training is crucial. After all, new employees take an average of eight months to become fully productive.
Step 7: Expand role-specific training
In the first few weeks and months, your new employee training plan will include a significant amount of time getting your new hire up to speed. Provide access to manuals and checklists they can reference and encourage them to take notes on best practices.
Besides training for job-specific tasks, introduce and explain reports that track the company’s KPIs (key performance indicators). It can help your new hire gauge their performance to know if they’re doing well in their new role.
Schedule regular one-on-one sessions with them to make sure they understand their role. Encourage them to ask you questions, as well. They should feel confident in their training and know where to look for more info if they need it.
Step 8: Review the new hire checklist
Whether hiring your first employee or your fifth, review the new hire checklist to make sure you’re on track with your training plan. Reviewing your process quarterly can help to keep it up to date.
In a small business, owners and employees often wear many hats. It’s easy to get distracted or lose focus of your initial goals for hiring an employee.
Your original new hire training plan can help identify information or tasks you may have missed. Then, schedule time to review those items to help your employee succeed. It’s also a chance to find out what areas employees don’t feel confident in and need more training or a review.
Step 9: Plan training for new roles or responsibilities
After your new employee has been with you for a while, you may want to give them new responsibilities. For example, you might have them work on social media content for your business. Or, if you offer services, task them with reaching out to customers to get valuable feedback.
When you’re ready, you can begin training for new roles or responsibilities. You can do this through an in-house or external training program or by sending them to a workshop.
As with their initial training, set expectations and performance requirements. You’ll also want to create a timeline that allows ample time to learn and implement new skills.
How NEXT helps small businesses thrive every step of the way
New hire training and onboarding is a critical part of the hiring process. It’s a great way to build your company’s culture and make new hires feel like they belong. When you’re ready to hire, we can help you easily tailor workers’ compensation coverage and other business insurance policies to protect your business.
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