Start Them Out Right – The 5 Main Points That Every On-Boarding Plan Must Have

ilovemyjobThe hiring process can be a long and frustrating affair, with little room for error. So why then to many businesses fall over at the one crucial part of it – the on-boarding? To go through all that time and effort to end up with the candidate leaving or worse still, completely disengaged from the moment they start, is a waste. When you consider that candidates who are not properly on-boarded and orientated into the workplace environment are 80% more likely to leave within 6 months (with a fair majority of those leaving within 6 weeks), it is an area of vital importance that is so often overlooked.

So, how then do we make sure we properly orientated the new employee into the organisation whilst giving them the best possible chance to properly engage with the workplace immediately?

1. Lose the Day 1 Mentality

Too many on-boarding and orientation process are obsessed with ‘Day 1’. Everything has to happen on day one. All introductions, work scope, task lists, log ins and accesses have to happen on day one and it is seen as an unmitigated disaster if this doesn’t happen. That’s fine…but it forgets one thing – the poor new employee. Swamped with so much happening on their first day, their sense of the overwhelming will be prominent…and dangerous for any long-term retention.

2. Plan Plan Plan

From this loss of the Day 1 mentality, an on-boarding plan is able to breathe a little. Put together a clear plan of work over the first day, week, month and quarter to allow the employee to ease and grow into the role. This planning should have regular updates with the employee to make sure they are handling the new role well.

3. Lose the KPIs

If you hit the new employee with a whole array of KPIs and performance targets immediately, you have failed. Simple. The introduction of these should occur much later into their employment, when settling in and comfort has been achieved. Much worse, if you set Day 1 targets that must be abided by as a basis of their immediate continued employment, get out of business – because you suck at it. No amount of ‘sink or swim’ justification will suffice. It is a policy of a rotten employer.

3. Is the Director / CEO / Owner Involved?

Speaking at a recent engagement, I was given the story of a business whose CEO refused point-blank to engage with any new employee. This wasn’t a huge multi-national, but a small 10-person operation. Ludicrous! If the top of your business does not want to meet with any new employee, it is a huge mistake. If that new employee does not feel a part of the organisation, from top down and understands their role in the eyes of greater business, then that Director / CEO / Owner has failed a basic test of employee engagement.

4. It Isn’t Just Showing Where the Bathroom and Kitchen Is.

New employees need to know exactly where they sit in the organisation and its overall strategy, what their role will do to contribute to it and how they will bring their skills to the fore. Remember this: there is nothing like losing a candidate because they did not feel a part of the overall organisation immediately

5. Think Engagement

The activities of any on-boarding or orientation process must have the central themes of employee engagement at its heart. Having a new employee feel a part of an organisation from the moment they start is incredibility vital. It will mean that employee will be productive from the start and feel a part of the team immediately. It should be the aim of any organisation with new employees.

Just as you have one chance to make a first impression, how a business handles a new employee, one they have spent time and resources finding, is incredibly vital. Stuff it up, and you will not have an employee completely in line with your culture, strategy and growth. Get it right, sow the seeds of engagement from the moment they arrive, and your chances of having a solidly engaged and advocating employee are greatly enhanced.





6 Lessons From Myer’s Bad Hire Fiasco

myerThe recent revelations of a bad hiring decision by Myer has put a spotlight on executive recruitment practices. The issue of a candidate, seemingly lying on his resume, then assuming a very senior role only to be exposed for lying and losing said role offer a clear lesson for businesses in any hiring situation to learn.

So what can the average business learn from the mistakes of Myer? These six points to take away from it will point most selection process in the right direction.

1. Background checks aren’t just Reference Checks

One of the major issues with the Myer fiasco was that the background checks conducted by both them and the recruitment firm who presented the candidate, failed basic process. The extent of background checks seems to have started and stopped at reference checks. What was lacking was suitable gauging of credential through various other means. Simple verification via publicly available business records, social media or by utilising industry knowledge that people working at that level must have would have sufficiently shown some problems with the candidate.

2. Know Your Candidate

Following on from expanding your background check, a clear picture will emerge of the candidate. Any decisions to hire must be made with full knowledge of who they are, what they’ve done and where they did it. Remember, in hiring – knowledge is power.

3. Probe and Qualify

If you are in a hiring process, a little deeper digging into a candidate’s past can really improve the abilities to make a clear decision. If the candidate has listed roles on their resume, find out more about them: why did they leave? What did they do? Who did they report to? All of which will get clear information, creating a path to confirm these details and qualify their veracity.

4. Don’t Fall For The Slick Operators

One thing to come out of this decision by Myer was the fact the candidate cam across as competent, well spoken…and slick. Inexperienced recruiters or hirers will get taken in by slick operators who can lie about their work experience and background, but do so in a way that is so unequivocally convincing. The thing to take away from this episode? If it sounds too good to be true, it probably is.

5. Verifiable, Documented and Relevant Proof

When candidates say they have worked for a particular organisation, or have achieved a certain level of results or can boast an impressive track record, always, always, always make sure they can back it up with hard proof. In some cases, and depending on the role, a referee will not suffice. You must be able to see the impact on a business of the candidate’s work as verified and demonstrable.

6. Don’t Assume

One of the clear problems to come out of the Myer bad hire was that a lot of assumptions were made that were not backed up by evidence. It is a clear and salient point not to assume something the candidate says to be true, unless is can be shown to be so. The higher the role, the more assumptions need to be dismissed before making a final decision.

Finally, Myer is learning a very big lesson in how the hiring process needs to be positioned in such away so that all information about candidates have been gathered and that a decision is clearly formed and made. It does, however, give other businesses the keys to make sure it doesn’t happen to them, and for that we can thank them.