Companies that show their employees a warm welcome are definitely on their way to better chances of employee retention and higher levels of engagement. It is a worthwhile investment to engage your new employees at an early stage. There are many ways to engage a new employee and set up a good foundation. Doing this will impact the rest of the person’s employment journey within the company. Here we’ve listed five ways to engage new hires from day one.

Blog WTPrepare ahead

You would probably want to welcome a new employee in an organised manner. It shows you mean business, it shows professionalism and sets everything off to a positive start. One way to do this is to send paperwork ahead of the first day. Ensure that everything is set up, tech-side – work computer, email, any required software and any other tools required.

Letting them know who to ask for when they arrive at the office will avoid unnecessary tension on the part of the new employee. No one likes that and they would definitely appreciate a heads up. Make sure the rest of the team knows when the new employee is joining to avoid surprises. It will also help coworkers plan their day better, especially if they need to introduce the new hire to company processes. Make sure you have an ironclad onboarding plan for your employees, developed by HR and the manager. Include a general outline of company culture, business strategy, company policies and procedures, tools and systems in place. It could take the form of a handy booklet which the employee can refer to in their first few months, or perhaps an email with an interactive PDF. Assign a buddy who checks in regularly with this employee.

Making a great first impression

You may think the first impression is set in the interview and that may well be true… but on their first day, the new employee is not viewing you as a potential employer but as their employer now and their brain will be on high alert. You may have attempted to woo them in the interview, but it doesn’t stop there. Go the extra mile on day one, and you’re helping to set a positive tone and expectations for the rest of the employee’s tenure. Welcome them via a customised welcome package, a tagged post on LinkedIn or treat them with lunch with colleagues.

Take your time with introductions

60% of employees say they would feel more engaged if they developed more friendships at work. It’s easy to feel like a fish out of water on your first day. Help them connect by allowing enough time for introductions and perhaps an ice-breaking activity. Some may feel comfortable enough to break the ice themselves, but others may need more help in this department.

Inform them of communication channels

Touch base regularly and ask them how their day is going. There are bound to be some kinks that need ironing out in the beginning, so make sure to communicate regularly with your employee. Even if the new hire is not an immediate subordinate, it will show you care if you reach out.

Train them on the company’s offerings and product

Ensure the new hire is trained in the company’s products. Perhaps allow them to shadow various teams during the first week so they get a better understanding of the processes and product life cycles. This is also a great opportunity for them to connect early on with their coworkers and ease future interactions.

Really, it all boils down to this – show them you care that they are there and thrilled to have them on board and it will be much easier for them to engage and feel a sense of belonging and ownership. If an employee feels they are welcome, they’ll soon be on their way to success!