Don’t Overlook the Benefits of a Proper Greeting

Don’t Overlook the Benefits of a Proper Greeting

How to make someone wish they were never hired (on their very first day).

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) published 37 pages of practice guidelines covering a subject frequently overlooked by companies – onboarding new employees. Clearly, the orientation process plays a significant role in the success of a company, so why is it just now earning the respect it deserves?

For many small businesses it’s simply a matter of time – it was hard enough making room in the day to bring someone on in the first place, now that they’re hired it’s time to roll. Unfortunately, onboarding, like most things in life, can end up costing even more time (and money) if not done properly the first time.

4 onboarding mistakes that’ll make your new hire re-consider 

Some disturbing statistics to consider:

  • S. companies lose 25% of their new hires within a year – the principle cause: a negative onboarding experience.
  • Training new hires can cost 1% to 2.5% of total revenues in downtime.
  • Approximately 20% of new employees don’t remain on staff longer than 45 days.
  • SHRM’s guidelines assert that 1 out of 25 new hires leave because the company didn’t provide a good onboarding experience.

So, what kind of experiences can drive that eager smiling face from the interview to turn their back on your company?

  1. A disappearing act. In one way or another, the person doing the hiring and the candidate form a connection; if on the first day the hiring agent is nowhere to be seen, it can create a rather cold greeting – kind of like being the new kid at lunch on the first day. If the HR department’s role is to hand off new hires to their respective departments, a simple explanation of what to expect on their first day can ease some of the awkwardness, and establish a level of professionalism for them to emulate.
  2. Nothing to do. Whether it be due to sluggish training, or simply not having a plan in place for a new hire’s first week, a delayed start waste their salary, and creates a poor impression of your company’s level of sophistication.
  3. No greeting. In response to a recent client survey we conducted, “I could have been late due to not knowing where on the campus I needed to be…” after the company failed to provide a building location, a proper greeting, or directions for their new hire. It’s hard to imagine, but yet it’s not uncommon to hear new hire’s report that nobody was expecting them on their first day. Again, this sets a negative image of the company culture, including their importance to management.
  4. Suffocating them with paperwork. Of course there are documents that must be signed by new employees; however, it’s usually appreciated when the option is given to access them online prior to their first day, or simply giving them time to complete it on their own. Either way, loading down new hires with stacks of paper can be a gumption trap, plus, having everything organized and online makes a great first impression. 

You’ve spent a lot of time and energy finding the perfect fit for your company, and you don’t want to have to start again because you’re not prepared to provide new hires with an environment that makes them excited to stay from day one.

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