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Published February 07, 2019
A weekly look at issues facing Wyoming business owners and entrepreneurs from the Wyoming Small Business Development Center (SBDC) Network, a collection of business assistance programs at the University of Wyoming.
By Jill Kline, state director, Wyoming SBDC Network
New hire onboarding and employee orientation set the stage for a new employee’s perception of your business and culture and, perhaps more importantly, clearly establish the business’s expectations of the employee.
I recently heard stories from new employees at two separate businesses and how they felt overwhelmed and discouraged on their first day at their new job. The stories described things like, once hired, there was no communication until the day they arrived on-site; not knowing where to park or where to report; not being introduced to other employees; and not even receiving specific training necessary for their job.
Onboarding does not need to be complicated or burdensome. A simple checklist of prioritized items, such as who can help them with a specific topic or task and a timeline for completion of each task, as well as an overall list, can provide clear guidance and expectations. Successful onboarding, using a clear strategy, will help an employee become productive quickly, saving an employer time and money. It also helps the employee feel welcome and supports employee retention and commitment or loyalty to the business.
Onboarding for seasonal help, like for a holiday or summer season, is crucial. Temporary employees should clearly understand their role, scope of work and who can guide, train or answer questions. Consider allowing the temporary employee to shadow a star full-time employee, permitting your star to mentor and train. However, for this to be successful, ensure this mentor or star has the skills and training to appropriately fulfill this duty. Recognize the mentor’s efforts with an award or bonus. After all, the mentor may be saving the business management time and heartache.
A few simple tips:
Need help developing and implementing an onboarding program? Contact your local Wyoming SBDC Network adviser by visiting www.wyomingsbdc.org.
Prepare an onboarding template that can be adjusted by position. The template can include:
-- A task list for the employee. You won’t have to try to remember what you want to cover. List things that can or should be communicated before the new hire’s first day.
-- Employee orientation items. This should be tasks to be completed on the first or second day.
-- Employee onboarding items. This should include tasks/training that will be completed over a period of time.
The Wyoming SBDC Network offers business expertise to help Wyoming residents think about, launch, grow, reinvent or exit their business. The Wyoming SBDC Network is hosted by UW with state funds from the Wyoming Business Council and funded, in part, through a cooperative agreement with the U.S. Small Business Administration.
To ask a question, call 1-800-348-5194, email firstname.lastname@example.org, or write 1000 E. University Ave., Dept. 3922, Laramie, WY, 82071-3922.