Getting a job is a joyous moment. All the laborious job hunting efforts are replaced with anxious moments about the new job, the responsibilities that come with it. There are lots of questions in the minds of people who are about to join a new organization. What will be the role? What do they expect of me? If I need help, who should I go to? Who are my team members? With a good orientation program, organizations will have an opportunity to answer all these questions, dispel any anxieties they may have and instill a sense of confidence and belonging into the new employees. Thus, employee orientation provides an opportunity for the organization to start a fruitful relationship with the employees.
Employee orientation program is not an obligation but an important need for an organization to integrate its new employees. How long does it take for a new employee to settle into the new system, depends largely on the employee orientation program. It provides a forum for an organization to share its goals and objectives on one side and helps the employees to adapt to the job and the working environment on the other side. This is in fact an important element in the recruitment and retention process.
So, how do you plan an employee orientation program? What should it constitute? Keeping in mind the needs of the organization and the employees, here is a quick checklist for a comprehensive orientation program.
Checklist#1: Organization Overview: In a nutshell, it covers the organization’s history, philosophy, mission and vision, goals, values and ethics and the managerial style of the organization.
Checklist#2: Nature of Business: It covers all the information starting from customer profile , functions of the various departments, financial background, product and services offered, their mode of distribution and the competitors product and services.
Checklist#3: Structure of the Organization: Portray the organization structure demonstrating the various departments, the people involved and their respective designation. It helps to understand the hierarchy of the organization and the names and positions of the persons occupied at each level of management.
Checklist#4: Performance and Behavior Expectation: It includes what the organization expects from the employee in terms of performance: the level of productivity. It discusses the rules of expected behavior for the organization and employees. Moreover, it gives information on the typical norms that incorporate culture, values and ethics of an organization.
Checklist#5: Company Policies: Circulate the brochure as prepared by the HR department of the organization that covers organizational policies, procedures etc. The manual provides information on the compensation practices, benefits offered (insurance, vacation etc.), procedures (work hours, leave allotted) etc.
Checklist#6: Safety Rules and Health Requirements: Employers can help the new employees to learn the job and improve the bottom line of the organization by giving due importance to the safety rules. Reinforcing safe work behavior will enable to reduce the cause of accidents.
Checklist#7: Office Procedures and Supplies: Explain the usage of various tools and procedures. It gives information on movement of products in and out of the organization, thus demonstrating a clear picture of the distribution channel.
Checklist#8: Individual Job Specifics: The discussion comprises of the job description of the employee, work objectives and job expectations etc. Here the employer gives emphasis on the importance of the particular job and describes how it contributes to the growing success of the organization. It is also relevant for the employer to set a benchmark so that employee can adopt the “learn and follow” method.
Checklist#9: Simple Communication: Communicate the instruction clearly without using any jargon. Proper understanding of the matter enables faster learning for the employee.
Checklist#10: Allot Limited Tasks in the Beginning: Provide tasks that a new employee can perform with minimal instruction. Maintain the flow of task from the easy to tough, as it helps the employee to get accustomed at each level of difficulty.
Checklist#11: Positivity: Always maintain a positive environment in the workplace. Motivate the employees; allay their fears by assuring the organization’s support in times of need. Never criticize anybody in front of others but discuss the problem in private.
These a few checklists for HR managers to help them organize an orientation program. Apart from these are there any other factors that HR managers should keep in mind while organizing an orientation program? Do share your thoughts on the same.