Starting a new job is a daunting prospect at the best of times, and now perhaps for some, it’s even more nerve-wracking thanks to the ongoing Coronavirus pandemic. Despite the national lockdowns, business professionals have continued to pursue new and exciting career opportunities. With home working now the ‘new normal’ the tentative first day in the ‘office’ is nothing like it used to be.
Introducing new team members to a company – from its culture, business goals, and people – is a much more difficult proposition for hiring businesses.
Here are some top tips for managers and new employees to smooth the remote onboarding process during the pandemic.
With many staff now working remotely, we are now even more reliant on technology. Getting up to speed with new systems and a company’s bespoke technology can take a little while for a new team member. Problems will inevitably arise along the way. To get past any potential teething issues, line managers should work closely with their IT department to ensure all usernames, passwords, logins, and programs are ready for their new staff members and anticipate any potential issues.
For a line manager, going through absolutely everything a new starter needs to know is time-consuming. For a new staff member, being introduced to all ins and outs of a business can be a lot to process and sometimes be overwhelming. Going through this process on Microsoft Teams or Zoom has added a new element for both parties to get to grips with. It’s now even more important to prioritise the information a new hire needs and for it to be delivered in bite-sized chunks.
In normal circumstances, we get to know who we’re working with through face-to-face meetings, collaborating on projects, and friendly chats in the hallways or kitchens. You may get invited for a pub lunch with colleagues, or perhaps a drink after work at the end of the week. While working from home, the team-bonding element can be done by video call. New work colleagues can be invited to a virtual quiz to help integrate them into the team and help them get to know the people they’re working with, in an informal setting.
As the days and weeks pass and a new starter begins to take on information, they will no doubt have a growing list of questions to ask you. Line managers and other colleagues can anticipate common questions and provide useful guides or documents to answer the vast majority of questions they are asked.
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