Remote orientation – New opportunity for employers
Employees want to be remote, so how do you build a good remote orientation for a new employee? The purpose of orientation is to ensure job performance and employee retention, as well as to familiarize them with the work community and routines.
Don't leave hanging ☹
Starting in a new job is exciting. In a remote orientation, it is therefore important to keep in touch with the employee from day one and to continue to do so regularly throughout the orientation. It would be terrible to start work with enthusiasm and be left hanging alone in some uncertainty. You can agree with the new employee how often you will see each other during the first few weeks or months. When you discuss this with the employee, also give him or her some control over how often he or she wants to meet. However, once or twice a week is probably the minimum for an effective induction and to ensure the employee is settling in and performing his or her duties.
Work started, but tools are missing?! Avoid embarrassment by being prepared in time
For remote orientation to work well, the employee must have the necessary technology at home. Make sure this is the case before first day of work and get the necessary tools. Agree with the employee on delivery of the equipment well in advance. Remember to give the employee access to necessary files and software and invite them to internal discussion groups (e.g. Slack).
Structure and material of the orientation ensures that the main things are learned
A clear orientation framework and a variety of materials play an important role in induction and employee engagement. Since everyone learns things in different ways, it's a good idea to make the orientation more than just written material. In multicultural companies, pictures and videos are often used to help with orientation in addition to written material, as they are partly understandable without language skills. Explain clearly to the new employee the company's documentation policy for remote working.
Getting to know your future colleagues
Getting to know your colleagues can be part of your orientation. For example, some aspects of orientation can be shared with existing employees. This gives them a chance to get to know the new employee and learn about his or her working methods. At the same time, new employee gets to know the team and becomes part of work community more quickly. Joint team meetings with key stakeholders can also speed up new employees' settling in. Also allow time for the new employee to familiarize himself/herself with the team. If planning and scheduling the orientation is a headache, you can create a timetable for it, so that the intensity of the orientation is more visible. Think in advance about the indicators or tasks you can use to monitor implementation and effectiveness of the orientation.
Networking requests from new colleagues and introductions on LinkedIn are a nice way to warm an employee's heart. Some companies have even sent new employees a small welcome packet, often including company branded merchandise and snacks.
Employer's checklist for remote orientation:
- Delivering supplies to the employee on time
- Stay in touch – Don't leave hanging
- Create a clear orientation structure and a variety of material. Use images and videos in a multicultural working environment.
- Existing employees to help with some aspects of the orientation!
- Schedule and monitor progress, optimize if necessary
- Encourage questions and ideas!
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