New Employee Orientation Program – Page Turner or a Media Rich Experience?

New Employee Orientation Program – Page Turner or a Media Rich Experience?

If you are one of the fast growing US companies with global presence and want to launch a new employee orientation course, what do you need to include in the course? What instructional, visual and audio strategy is effective?

As most of the fast growing organizations tend to change very fast, the details about organization structure, subsidiaries and initiatives also tend change equally fast. It is therefore advisable to use a simple structure and standard templates to develop the course. This will help us to easily update the details and quickly roll out the latest versions.

Try to put across a basic structure of the course and add useful tips that save time and cost and still help us develop a very effective and practically viable course.

Basic Structure for New Employee Orientation Course

  • Message from CEO: Start the course with a video from the CEO, sharing the vision and culture of the organization. This will help the new employee align with the organization’s vision. A video will be of high impact especially if it comes from the CEO directly.
  • History and Organization Structure: Use timeline template to share the history of the organization. Also talk about the broad organizational structure. We don’t need to add specific location wise details. Don’t give specific key people in the organization as they tend to change.
  • Product and Markets: Provide detailed information about the products and services of the company, its USP and major differentiators. We should also talk about the market share and the major markets.
  • Testimonials from Employees: We can also have small videos from some people within the organization who can share their experience working in this organization and how the culture has an impact. This will help the new employees get a healthier picture of the organization.
  • Policies and Procedures: Give basic details of the policies and procedures that need to be followed and give more information through PDFs. This will help the employees learn the basic procedures and if they wish they can get detailed information through the PDFs.
  • Career Enhancement: The course should share how the employee can progress in his or her career and grow in the organization. We can talk about the training initiatives by the company and performance appraisal system.
  • Employee Responsibility: The course should finally end with what the responsibility of the employee is and how their behavior will impact the organization.

Tips and Tricks to Design an Effective Course

  • Video from CEO: As this course will be launched to global audience, it is better you have a video of the CEO with subtitles in their local languages.
  • Use Standard Authoring Tool: Any good authoring tool should be used to develop a simple, easy to upgrade software. We can use a PowerPoint deck and publish into Adobe connect or Articulate. If you look for lot of literature which needs to be understood by the new employee, we can use HTML based authoring tool like Lectora. I do not recommend doing a rich, interactive course using Flash or 3D.
  • Minimize Audio: I don’t recommend that this course have too much audio. I rather prefer that we don’t have audio because when we need to make edits, we also need to change audio which will involve high cost. Also the narrator may not be available.
  • Real Photos: We can make the course rich by adding rich graphics and real photos of people and buildings of the company. This will make the course very company specific and interesting.
  • Translate the Course: Translated courses have greater impact on the new employees especially if they are not so well versed with the English language. It is recommended that you translate the course into at least 3 basic languages: Chinese, Spanish and German.

Do let me know your views on developing the new employee orientation course. Looking forward to hearing your experience in this regard.

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