When you have hired a new employee, how can you make sure he or she feels truly welcome when coming to their new workplace? The saying that first impressions are the most lasting also goes up for you as an employee. Hence, have you ever thought about how you can make your workplace as friendly and as welcoming as possible for new employees?
Here are 7 ideas to get you started!
- Onboarding strategy
Make sure that you´re prepared for a new arrival in the team. There is nothing that screams “unwelcome” more than arriving at a new workplace that doesn´t seem to be expecting you. A good onboarding experience is not just a nice document with company information waiting for you, it is the entire end-end experience and should include having a person waiting for the new arrival, ensuring an available desk, briefing the rest of the team beforehand and having the email / phone requested (it can be quite annoying if you want to start working but you have to wait for 2 weeks before you have a laptop, log-in details or a working email address).
- Welcome Buddy
A great way to make somebody feel welcome is to assign a buddy that can act as the point of contact for every doubt or question the new employee might have. As a new arrival, you might not want to bother your manager with everything and having a peer that will take you for an informal coffee that first day and can answer all your questions is very helpful.
- Collage of all immediate colleagues
Arriving into a new team can be very overwhelming and just remembering everybody´s name can be a challenge. Instead of handing out the standard organizational chart to show who is who and who works where, create a more fun collage of all immediate colleagues. This should not only include their name and position but also some more personal information. This collage can serve as a great resource for the new employee to get to know the team a bit and to feel welcome.
- Show genuine interest in the person and his / her personal circumstances
Instead of giving a standard welcome talk, make it personal and show some true interest in the new employee and their specific circumstances. Is she a young mother? She might appreciate to know the details on your nursing room. Does he have his mother in the hospital? Maybe some extra flexibility in working hours and location could be very helpful.
- Offer flexibility from day 1
Speaking of flexibility, make clear that in your company you work on the base of trust. You can really make a new employee feel welcome by stating that as long as output will be delivered, he or she can enjoy some flexibility in terms of working hours and location. The more flexibility one gets from a supportive employer, the easier it will be to balance work and personal life.
- Choose the right day to welcome a new hire
In order to make someone feel welcome, you will have to choose a strategic day and time for the new employee to arrive. No matter how friendly and welcoming your staff is, if you need to interrupt them on a busy Monday morning to introduce a new team member they might simply not be able to dedicate enough time. Hence instead of simply choosing the first of the month as a starting date, consider what might be a calmer moment in the team so that all colleagues can actually make the new team member feel welcome (e.g. Friday afternoon).
- Organize a team-led office tour
Everybody can give a new hire the standard office tour and show where the bathroom and the coffee machines are. However, to make a new employee feel more welcome, much more value can be given through such an office tour if it is team led. No standard office tour will tell you which printer always has issues, in which conference room you need to bring an extra jacket because it is usually very cold, which coffee corner has the best coffee and where the big boss sits.
What other strategies do you have to make a new employee feel welcome?