July 23, 2007

Employee Orientation

After we hired new employees, the next step on recruitment process is employee orientation.
Employee orientation is an important part of the hiring process. It is also the most neglected part of the process. It is designed to reduce first-day-jitters and to bring the employee into the work process as quickly as possible by familiarizing them with their jobs and specific and general company operations, policies, procedures, and products.

When done properly, orientation sessions can instill positive attitude about the organization;ensure quicker productivity; reduce the likelihood of problems from misunderstandings and misconceptions about company policies; and improve communication between employees. The more effort made to get employees started right, the better your chances they will stay and become great employees.

The main objectives of an orientation program are:
• Make a good impression from the first day.
• Make new employees feel welcome and at ease.
• Explain what the company is about and explain the policies, procedures, benefits,
and programs.
• Show the new employee the products and what the company does even if it is not in
his/her direct department or job description.

Studies show that the first few days and weeks on the job set the whole tone for how the employee will react with his/her new environment, and subsequently perform. In designing a program some key points to keep in mind are:
• An effective program requires time. New employees should not be given tons of
information at once. Information given over a period of a few days will be remembered
a lot longer. Follow-up sessions after a couple of weeks will reinforce the
important items.
• Listen to the new employee; answer questions when asked. Make the new employee
feel comfortable when he/she asks a question – not a bother.
• The supervisor should be given specific orientation responsibilities; such as, provide a tour of the immediate work area, introduce them to co-workers, and generally explain the procedures.
• Having a co-worker assigned as a ‘buddy’ to a new employee sometimes helps to
ease the new employee's concerns.

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