At Tiger, our experience in service-led recruitment of senior business support staff is something we pride ourselves in. After almost two decades establishing ourselves as one of the best PA recruitment agencies in London, we felt it was a natural next step to launch our retained executive search division, Tiger Platinum Executive Search, in 2019.
The hiring process doesn’t end at the candidate’s acceptance of the job. Without a smooth introduction to the organisation in the days following their acceptance, you are in danger of alienating your new recruits and impacting their motivation and productivity.
It is essential that new employees are given the very best opportunity for a strong start with a productive and enthusiastic ‘onboarding’ process, also known as new employee orientation. If you’ve just recruited a PA in London, for example, the start of their employment should be carefully planned so that they feel welcomed and you show your organisation in the best possible light; doing so will help them to start their new role with a positive mindset. It also means you have the best chance of retaining them for longer.
Your onboarding process* could take up to three months, depending on the level and scope of the role. However long it takes, there are some important steps to consider:
A successful onboarding process doesn’t begin from the new employee’s start date. As soon as the individual accepts the role, you should be managing your new recruit’s perception of the organisation’s brand and the team they’re about to join. This is important now more than ever because in a buoyant market, securing brilliant candidates can prove challenging.
If they haven’t yet met key members of the management team, an email introduction from each of them welcoming them to the company and proposing a time to meet in person when they have started is a good idea. This will also help them to feel as though senior staff are taking a genuine interest in them and their skills. You should do the same with their new team so that they get a colleague’s perspective and a clear understanding of where they sit within the organisation.
The first few weeks
This is the most important time for any new starter. In the first few weeks they will form an opinion of your company which will be hard to change if it isn’t a positive one.
Send around an email asking their colleagues to introduce themselves so that they have informal introductions over a few days. Introducing them to everyone at once will be overwhelming and the new recruit is unlikely to remember any names. Organising a lunch is a good way to embed them into the team in a relaxed setting.
Starting a new role is not only daunting because the people and work are new; the processes and environment are new too. To make your new employee feel at ease, you might want to consider preparing a ‘new starter pack’ with any housekeeping information they need to know. This is important because a new employee is likely to want to impress and may be reluctant to keep asking their line manager questions. It can also help them to feel self-sufficient by being able to answer their own queries.
Recognise that a new employee will take some time to be able to work at their full capacity. If you enforce deadlines too quickly, you could get the wrong impression of their capabilities as they may be tempted to rush tasks in order to deliver them on time. Small mistakes are likely be made while the new recruit is taking in all this new information, so try to set them small tasks and evaluate their performance after each is completed, ensuring that you give constructive feedback.
If you’re looking to hire new support staff, get in touch with us to discuss your requirements today.