On the ninth week of Christmas, my recruiter gave to me – How to manage the lead up to your new employee starting.

Congrats! You’ve hired! You’ve been right through the intensive interview process and found the one. But how do you ensure that this candidate feels completely comfortable and at ease in the lead up to their start date, and on their first day?

Many business owners are under the pump this time of year, and employee inductions and formal processes can feel tedious, but they are essential. They communicate that you are a professionally run business and this is your first opportunity to show job security to your new hire.

Following this checklist in the 2 weeks leading up to the first day, will lay the foundation for a quality and communicative relationship.

Once they have formally accepted the offer:

  • Provide a proper employee contract outlining the terms of their offer including job description, wage, roster etc.

2 weeks before:

  • To save time later, provide any paperwork that needs to be filled in. This includes tax and super forms, and banking information.
  • If you’re comfortable, provide your employee handbook or policy or protocol documents you would like signed prior to starting, for example, personal presentation standards, or your process around leave requests.

1 week before:

  • Provide an agenda for their first day including start and finish times, when their lunch break is scheduled and where to park their car if they drive.
  • Give your existing team the heads up about the new starter including their name, level of experience and the role they will have in the business.

The day before:

  • Send a quick text to let them know you’re looking forward to them starting and give them the opportunity to ask any last questions they may have.
  • Assign a ‘buddy’ or ‘mentor’ for the next day, this person will be the ‘go-to’ if the new starter has any questions or needs a hand.

On the day:

  • Welcome the new starter with enthusiasm and warmth! Show them around their new workplace so they know where to find anything.
  • Introduce them to their buddy for the day.
  • Provide a team directory. Whether you have a team WhatsApp group or group text, include the person in the team communication ASAP.
  • Schedule 10 to 15 minutes at the end of the day to sit down with them, ask how their first day went, provide clarity on any questions or concerns, and that they have everything they need.

Your new candidate feeling confident and prepared in the lead up to starting their new role is key in ensuring they actually show up on their first (and second!) day and following these steps will give you the best chance at a successful start!