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One of the many challenges facing companies today is the shortage of qualified workers. From entry-level retail jobs to restaurant personnel and beyond, companies are desperate to bring the workforce back to their operations.

If you align your sentiments with this common trend, you will likely always be on the hunt for tips for finding and retaining employees these days. Onboarding new team members successfully means incorporating a few key steps in the process. And retaining your best staff today might require aligning with their new priorities. Today we’ll highlight three ways to help you achieve both goals in your business.

1. Setting the Right Expectations

What hasn’t changed since the pandemic is the best practice of setting the right expectations. When new employees are hired, your onboarding process should center around delivering precise expectations for the individual. This includes benchmarks, guidelines, and rules for performance, employment, and within the role itself.

Great First Day

The onboarding for any new hire should be in the spirit of making a great first-day impression. The first day an individual shows up to the job, set the expectation that the day is an introductory day. Let the new hire know that shuffling human resources paperwork, getting a tour, and introductions are about the extent of the day’s productivity. It will, in turn, set a more relaxed tone conducive for new hire questions. Many companies also offer new hire welcome gifts that include maybe a company shirt, new business cards, or branded coffee mug. These sentiments promote inclusion as part of an attempt to welcome a new person to the team.

Thorough Employee Handbook

Another significant aspect of setting the right expectations involves the employee handbook or review of company policies and procedures. Get the new hire started on the right foot by outlining the various processes for submitting time-off requests or calling in sick. Discuss sexual harassment policies and dress code requirements. It’s also important to introduce how your company rewards accomplishments and imposes disciplinary actions. When an individual knows and understands the various company rules of engagement, he or she will be more likely to abide.

Job Duty Expectations

Even the most entry-level positions will need a proper introduction to the role. Some companies have new hires follow around another colleague performing similar functions. Others have managers train new employees on the job duties as a way to effectively set a productive pace. Whatever your introduction process is for your new team members, make sure they understand what success means. They will be more apt to perform well if they understand every aspect and nuance of the position upfront.

2. Meeting the Right People

Don’t leave your new hires on an island when they first start. Another critical step to a successful onboarding process is making the right introductions. Other members of the team, fellow employees, and management should all welcome new people to the company. It’s one of the best ways to promote and reinforce the team atmosphere.

Introduce Senior Staff

Even if there are senior staff members not directly connected with the new hire’s role, introduction to senior management is important. A new employee will appreciate meeting other leaders within the organization. And in addition to meeting direct report supervisors, knowing who the primary decision-makers are within various departments can demonstrate company direction.

Introduce Support Staff

While you’re taking a new employee around to meet the team of managers, be adamant about also introducing support staff. New salespeople will need access to marketing and sales collateral, for example. Introducing them to sales support connections will be critical to their job performance. Other administrative support staff are also essential in providing assistance as a new hire learns the ropes of the new role. Be sure to point out which individuals can help with questions, supplies, tech support, and human resources functions.

Introduce Colleagues

Your new hire is going to be spending the next 40 hours every week with colleagues, either within the same department or role. Take extra time to make these introductions to ensure a smooth adoption into the team. Identify any veterans of the role and those most successful. You’ll want your new employee to look to the right staff for motivation and expertise.

3. Having the Right Benefits

Today’s employees, especially those with the most talent, have certain expectations for benefits and compensation. The key to onboarding and retaining your teams is ensuring you have the right roster of amenities available. Explaining these benefits in detail and on the first day should be a priority, as well.

Employees Want Growth Opportunity

Today’s top performers will always be on the hunt for new growth opportunities. And it doesn’t mean your new hire necessarily wants to scale the corporate ladder. Growth can be continuing education opportunities or specialty job training. A clear path to success, whether it’s to management or within a job, needs to be outlined during your process.

Employees Want Predictable Consequences & Results

Spend a considerable amount of time introducing your new employees to predictable outcomes. There is a sense of security for a new hire who can predict results and consequences with accuracy. For example, if the production of a product hits a certain level, bonuses are awarded. If the entire team makes it through a specific period of time without a safety incident, they get a company luncheon.

Alternatively, employees should also be well-versed in understanding the consequences of poor performance or behaviors. So be sure to outline disciplinary processes or tolerance thresholds thoroughly.

Employees Want Flexible Benefit Options

Today’s employees want flexible benefit options. Many companies are transitioning, for example, to the Individual Coverage Health Reimbursement Agreement (ICHRA) as a method of offering cost-effective health benefits. Under these types of platforms, employees can buy and choose their own catered health insurance coverage from the marketplace and then have company reimbursements for out-of-pocket expenses. Instead of forcing employees into a general group plan, the ICHRA model is proving to be a popular way to offer employees the flexibility they want.

As you look to carve out new onboarding and retention strategies for your new hires, keep these tips in mind. And if you need help exploring your ICHRA business offerings, let W3LL help you get started!

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