Even average hiring decisions can get compensated by adopting the right way of welcoming newcomers
One thing that would strike anybody who has worked in any other company immediately upon joining, is the openness
The best workplaces focus on the best ways to integrate newcomers into the organization’s culture and help them start performing within a short time frame. Even average hiring decisions can get compensated by adopting the right way of welcoming newcomers.
Most organizations design their new employee welcome process, keeping in mind the need to familiarize a new employee with the organization’s history, culture, purpose, career opportunities, important dos and don’ts and help a new employee become productive quickly. In addition, the best workplaces design their welcoming process to reinforce a newly appointed employee’s belief that she/he has indeed taken a correct career decision in choosing to join this organization. Some practices at these best workplaces are:
• Early and regular engagement – creating a bond through information sharing
At InterGlobe, a regular update regarding the business is shared with selected candidates via emails, company newsletters, etc. to maintain regular connect with them. The Qualcomm orientation process begins immediately after a candidate has accepted his/her offer. Within the first 24 hours, the new employee’s manager calls to congratulate and welcome the individual to the team which is followed by a welcome email from the staffing representative including instructions about where to go on their first day, what to wear and how to access the New2Q Employee Network website prior to arrival.
• Making first day seamless and memorable
Noogler (new joinee) orientation program at Google includes interesting activities and tech talks throughout the first week. This help Nooglers understand the breadth of the groups and resources available, and give them a sense of how their roles fit into the company as a whole. As this first week can be a little hectic with so many activities, all Nooglers are provided with a credit for a free one hour massage to be used onsite. Finally, the Noogler orientation program is completed on Friday at TGIF (Thank God it’s Friday communication sessions), where the entire office comes together to welcome the week's new employees.
• Team leader and the team co-own the welcoming process with HR
In the ‘Lets start together’ team at Hilti, the team leader is the mentor and takes overall responsibility for the new member. The team leader helps develop the newcomer to achieve outstanding results. In addition, there is a buddy, who helps the new member to resolve questions in an informal environment. Lastly, the HR team helps to co-ordinate the on-boarding, induction and integration by defining development needs, plans and next steps.
• Enabling the newcomer to take pride in the culture and purpose of the organization
To maintain this collaborative, fast-paced, innovative and fun culture, Qualcomm educates new employees about Qualcomm's history. This is done through a program called ‘52 Weeks at Qualcomm’, a series of weekly one-page short stories. These stories introduce new employees to the history, values, and culture of Qualcomm. Each story provides insight into Qualcomm‘s unique culture and reinforces their core values.
• Support for early success
Participants who successfully complete the Boot Camp at NIIT are deployed at various ‘Education Centers’ across the country to be productive from the first day. The BootCamp model consists of three distinct phases. Phase 1 focuses on conceptual learning where sessions by experts and theoretical study material are the prime modes of training. Phase 2 is on task-based learning. Simulated project environments followed by debrief sessions are the prime training tools in this phase. The last phase focuses on the ready connect of the participants with the actual work environment. This phase has an internship program in which participants work in actual business locations.
Arboretum is a Latin word, which means “a garden where grown up trees are nurtured”. At MindTree, the Arboretum program is the nurturing hub of all lateral joiners, until each new lateral mind gets assigned to a project. It is the first-of-its-kind program, which within its initial years of inception, reduced the infant mortality (those leaving the organization within the first 6 months) rate.
• Measure effectiveness of the processes
At InterGlobe, voice of the new joinee is analyzed at regular intervals to initiate process improvements by the process of Me’lange – The Blend. The Day 1 feedback aims to understand the on-boarding experience of the employee. The Day 7 feedback aims to understand if the employee has settled in the organization. Day 45 feedback aims to understand, whether or not, the newcomer has settled in the role, his/her KRAs have been set and the broader experience. Day 90 feedback takes inputs on the work environment, supervisor, communication and team culture.
At Agilent Technologies, each people manager has a 6 month roadmap, with structured interventions and milestones linked to a 360 degree feedback, which helps the manager to gauge the transition effectiveness. E-Lead is another intranet website maps what a new manager needs to do in the first 6 months.
While most good workplaces will make efforts to equip newcomers with the right tools and equipment to be productive, the best workplaces spend considerable time in welcoming newcomers to the team, integrating them with the organization’s culture and continued support for early success.
Prasenjit Bhattacharya is CEO of Great Place to Work® Institute, India. Views expressed are personal. He can be contacted at email@example.com