How To Not Scare Off an Employee on Their First Day

A first day at a new job is nerve-wracking enough, so don’t make things even worse that it leads to the new employee not wanting to come back for a second day.

Okay, so quitting after the first day isn’t so common, but a bad introduction can prepare the groundwork for something that is becoming increasingly normal these days: leaving the job within the first 90 days.

A 2018 survey of 1,500 American workers revealed that 33% have quit a new company within only 3 months of being employed.

It’s hard to know what went wrong in all these cases, but much of it could be traced back to their very first day.

If you’d rather not go through the process of searching and hiring for an employee all over again, give the newbie a perfect start instead.

An email or phone call before their first day

During the interview process, there’s obviously a lot of communication back and forth, however, if the successful applicant isn’t due to start at the workplace for a month or so, then the chat can dry up.

It doesn’t take much for the company to send an email or call the new hire before day 1 to simply say that their excited to meet them again and have them join the company.

This makes the newbie feel welcomed and that they haven’t been forgotten.

Use an applicant tracking system from the likes of Personio to ensure that this last step in the recruitment process isn’t missed.

Make sure they arrive to a neat and finished desk

A welcome basket with a drink and snack can only do so much!

If the new employee arrives to everyone frantically assembling your computer and trying to find a chair, it sends the message that the person is a bit of an afterthought and not much care is being taken.

What’s even worse is if the team leader of the new employee is completely unaware that they have someone starting that day, as it simply screams “unprofessionalism.”

Make sure they have a “buddy” and a team lunch

The buddy system might feel a bit like school, but it still applies to the workplace!

Having one friendly person to guide a employee through their new work life is incredibly helpful, as they know there’s at least someone to turn to when they’re unsure of anything.

As well, a team lunch helps bring everyone together and breaks the ice.

Be very organized

Every new employee needs to have a schedule for their onboarding.

It’s no good starting on Monday and then by Wednesday, you don’t have any idea which training to do next.

HR should be giving all the health and safety aspects, IT should discuss all login details, and the team leader must talk about the role, tasks, and what’s expected of them.

However, don’t bombard any newbie with all the hard work they’ll have to do and the tough deadlines, as they’ll find that out eventually.

Give them the right confidence and prepare them, but never throw them in at the deep end.

Have a sit-down with the new employee after the first week

This is a great chance to discover how they’re feeling, if there are any burning questions they’d like to ask, and if there’s anything the company could do better in the first week.

It’s always hard to know exactly what a new job will be like until you actually do it, so an informal chat will help everyone find out what needs to be done in the following weeks.