Making a new hire is an exciting transition for your company, which should be equally as exciting for your new employee! Everyone has a horror story from their first day or first week at a new job, and although we can probably sit back and laugh about it now, it’s crucial to make that first day as seamless as possible. Here are 7 ways to welcome your new employees so that they feel comfortable and productive from day one.

Start immediately

If there is a lengthy gap between the job offer and the start date, don’t wait until your new hire’s first day to welcome them to the team. Whether you send them materials to read over prior to starting their position, invite them to a company happy hour, or incorporate them into email communications, it’s a good feeling to be included from the start. Encourage your employees to connect with the new hire on LinkedIn or send an email congratulating the new employee on joining your company.

Create an onboarding process

Welcoming your new employee is just as important as the hiring process. Make a goal sheet, link them to any relevant documents such as policies, new employee forms, or creative strategies, and ensure that they have necessary logins and industry contacts. Implementing an onboarding process will ensure that the first days go smoothly and that hiring is consistent for every new employee that you bring to the company. A new employee orientation is a great way to welcome your new hire and integrate them into the culture and happenings of your team.

Assign a mentor

Ensure that your new hire has a buddy throughout their first day (or even first week)! There is nothing worse than feeling like an outsider at your new job, so it’s crucial to plan for someone to be with the new employee at the beginning so that they are comfortable and feel welcomed. Have a mentor or manager take them out to lunch one day or check in on them throughout the week. It will also allow for the start of a relationship that will continue to grow after the welcoming committee has died down.

Prepare your team

The last thing you want is for your new hire to walk in the door to a group of surprised faces. Inform your company of the new hire, let them know a little personal background information, and talk about what they’ll be doing for the company. Put their first day on the calendar so that everyone knows who the new face is walking around the office. If you want your new hire to shadow a veteran employee or assist a creative with a project, make sure that it’s not shocking when the employee shows up at their desk ready to go.

Give a gift

We aren’t suggesting that you spend your Q2 earnings on an elaborate present that will wow your new hire. Think of something simple that connects with your company culture, business industry, or history of the company. Whether it’s a branded coffee mug, a gift card to the restaurant across the street, or a book of fun facts so they can brush up on their knowledge for Trivia Fridays, make it personal and make it align with your company. It’s the thought that counts; coming to their first day with a little something on their desk will make your new employee feel appreciated and welcomed.

Create a task list

We’ve all been at new jobs where we sit around the first couple of days with nothing to do. Ensure that your new employee has a full calendar whether it’s shadowing a colleague, sitting in on meetings, jumping into a project, or going to lunch with the team. Make a list of items to complete each day and show them their calendar for the first week. Include tasks that are not mandatory but that can fill up voids in their schedule. This also sets the expectation of coming to work to be productive and not sit around on your phone.

Ask for feedback

If your welcoming or onboarding strategy needs development, reach out to your current employees and ask about their first days at your company or previous workplaces. Ask open-ended questions to gather feelings and opinions about how the company can improve the process for new hires. An insider perspective can help you create a new hire welcoming strategy that will ensure that all employees moving forward feel welcomed and excited on their first day.

Depending on the industry and culture of your business, your onboarding strategy and welcoming process can vary. There is not a one-size-fits-all approach to making a new hire feel comfortable; just make sure that you check off all of the boxes and that the first days align with the months going forward.

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