New hire- ready set wait

A used pencil holder, pens with ink that’s dried up like the Mojave desert, a waste basket with someone’s leftovers from last month…year…who knows?  I think we have all started off jobs moving into less than ideal cubicles or offices. I moved into a cubicle and found cans of chunky beef stew in the drawers. Nothing says “I want you here” like the last person’s leftover can of chunky beef stew in your new drawer.

I think one of the most overlooked steps in the hiring process is the on-boarding of new hires.  Companies spend a lot of time being thorough in the hiring process to ensure they have the right candidates-personality interviews, relevant technical interviews, drug testing, credit check, signing over your first-born child.

Once they have decided on a candidate, the process is turned over to HR. Human Resources makes sure that the new hire procedure is followed. The new candidates get a tidal wave of information that is meant to inform, not overwhelm. Some companies try to cram as much knowledge as they can into a short amount of time to make certain that the new hire understands the company way and to cover them against anything bad.

Most new hires leave with a card in hand and tons of potential questions but they will need to let their ears stop ringing and their head stop spinning before they can articulate anything.

The hiring manager takes the new employee to his/her new domain (cubicle and office). Nothing screams “welcome” like a thick coat of office dust and a dated can of tuna from 2004. The manager shakes their hand and says “this is your cubicle, I will let you get acclimated, and then I will come check on you in a few minutes”. Minutes turn into hours. Then someone stops by and introduces themselves and asks you to help by jumping right in. Training by fire to commence in T minus 10, 9 , 8 , 7…. I think you get the picture.

Recently I had a consultant start a new position after having given a two-week notice at their prior employer only to find nothing ready for them when they arrived for their first day of work.

Pay attention to the details. Make a list of the things this person will need to be successful to perform their expected duties.   If it takes a company two days to get a security badge, three days to get their laptop for IT, and finally five days to access the system by my count, that first week amounted to very little work and a lot of waiting.  If as a consultant/new hire you see this happening, talk to your manager.

Above all, as a new hire DO NOT go to sleep at your desk as you wait for your access or laptop, yep that actually happened.

Managers, remind yourself of all the things you need to accomplish for the new hire to help them “hit the ground running” as opposed to “hit the snooze button”. You will reap the rewards of a faster ROI and an overall better perception of  you and the company.

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