Smart Onboarding Tips for the Small Business Owner

Smart Onboarding Tips for the Small Business Owner

Hiring the right people is one of the biggest challenges small business owners face. Without the hefty bank accounts and huge HR departments of their rivals, small businesses are often left scrambling for the qualified workers they need.

As a small business owner, you know how lengthy, complicated and expensive the hiring process can be. So the last thing you want is to see all your hard work squandered. Once you find the right hire, you want to welcome them with open arms, and that means creating an onboarding process that nurtures talent, sets clear expectations and builds a productive corporate culture. Here are some smart tips small business owners can use to get the onboarding process right.

Create a Killer Workspace

Workspace design and layout can have a significant impact on productivity, so set your new hires up for success. Take the time to set up the workspace right, from making sure essentials like the telephone and computer are within easy reach to ensuring that the space is properly organized and intuitive.

You do not have to wait until your new hire is onboard to set up a great workspace. The sooner you get started the better off you, and your new hire, will be.

Test the Technology

A great workspace will not make much of a difference if the computer does not boot up or the network is inaccessible. Never assume that the technology will work – test it thoroughly before your new hire arrives.

Do a quick check of the computer and telephone, ensuring that incoming and outgoing connections are working and network connectivity is fast enough to enhance productivity. If anything is amiss, you will still have time to fix it, but only if you plan ahead.

Communicate Ahead of Time

Speaking of planning ahead, it is important to communicate with your new hires long before their anticipated start date. Once the job offer has been made, use your time wisely and make your future employee as comfortable as possible.

Now is the time to send out the essentials, from copies of the employee handbook to information about the firm’s retirement plan. Communicating this policy information ahead of time will make it easier for your new hires to fit into the corporate culture.

Be sure your new hire knows what time to show up, who to ask for and where to park. These practicalities are easy to overlook, but they are very important to anyone starting a new job.

Establish a Mentor Relationship

Leaving your new hire on their own is just asking for trouble, so assign a mentor for your latest acquisition. If your business is very small, those mentorship duties may fall on your shoulders, and you need to be ready for the challenge.

If your firm is larger, you can assign a mentor, someone who understands how the company works and can help guide your new hire along. Be sure to check in with your mentor from time to time – to see how the new hire is coming along and offer ongoing guidance as needed.

Making a mistake in the hiring process can be very costly. Studies have shown that hiring a bad employee can cost a small business many times that individual’s salary, and that is an expense few small businesses can afford. But getting the hiring right is only half the battle – if you want to grow your small business, you need to make sure the people you hire are comfortable in their new roles. The right onboarding is a critical part of this process, and every small business can benefit from the tips listed above.

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