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Seb Anthony

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I am confident we are covering legal requirements but how do you start an employee off on the right foot? How do you make them feel welcome and help them see they've made the right choice in joining you?
I am putting together a training session for managers on the importance of company and departmental induction and would be very grateful if you would share your induction process with me. What are the essentials to include? What would be nice to include if time allows? What is it you do to help someone get used to your culture? Any traditional, new or wacky ideas will be considered, thank you!
Sue Griffiths

15 Responses

  1. Many previous answers
    Have you tried searching this site using the word ‘induction’?

  2. previous answers
    Hi there

    If you click on the link to my personal profile, you should find 2 previous answers I gave about inductions, dated 16 Jun & 13 July 2005, hope they help but let me know if you need more information.
    good luck

  3. Induction starts before starting!
    Induction is such a traditional way of starting employment that may inductees are already switched off! If they have been employed before they realise that induction is often a ‘tick-box’ function which HR owns and has to go through for regulatory/legal reasons. It’s often dull and boring.

    If you want to set the right tone then in my humble opinion you have to do 2 main things;

    1) In the time between the job offer/acceptance and the person starting their first day get their soon to be line manager to contact them at home or in the evening in a social setting. This alone sets the tone that the individual is going to be valued and welcomed to the organisation and the mere fact you are doing it out of hours before you have started work shows committment to the employee.
    2) Get a very senior manager to start off the induction day. If not, what message does that send out to the new recruits!
    Everything else in induction is meaningless if these are not done!

  4. Don’t take yourselves too seriously
    And I don’t just mean that humour is an essential ingredient of an induction but that a “warts and all” look at the job they will be doing can often be the best start an employee has – if the job is hard work tell them so, if it’s an often unrewarding task don’t hide it but accentuate the positives as well so that they feel prepared for their job.

    Organisations often wonder why turnover is so high and I think you’ll find the reason is often found in induction.

    DVD or e-learning inductions – horrible – all it says is we wanted to save some money in the long run and couldn’t be bothered to speak to you.

    Fantasy Inductions – all in the classroom without any contact with the function they’ll be working in – employees soon learn that the “ideal scenarios” they practiced absolutely never occur in real life.

    Over-hyped expectations such as “our best sales people make in excess of 60K!” – when in fact it takes 4 or 5 years to earn more than 25K.

    All are examples of bad inductions, a good induction captures the true essence of life where you work the good, the bad and the ugly and shows why you (or the inducting manager/trainer) is proud of working there.

    If you want to welcome people it needs to be in person and I agree with others here that it should involve senior management, their managers and also their team. It should have a social as well as commercial aspect and it should be truly memorable for all the right reasons.

  5. CIPD
    Hi there, the CIPD website has a useful Induction overview including a checklist which you might find useful.


  6. Induction should have a fun element
    I am currently re-designing and Induction Day and have come up with the idea linked to our Mission Statement and Vision and Values. I am going to split them into small teams and give them various posters, leaflets, adverts and any other material linked to the Council. I’m then going to ask them to design a poster on A1 flip for the Department they are about to work for. This should be quite interesing (and maybe refreshing) for people new to working for the Council. I think this will also help encourage them to start working as a team as well as many are coming form all walks of life and jobs.

  7. Poster Madness
    In a previous organisation I would have new employees separate into groups of 3-5 and have them draw images of how they saw the organisation. It linked together public and personal perceptions and was a great way to have the group start interacting and to introduce corporate roles and responsibilities.

    Thank you all for your helpful suggestions. I have picked up on the theme that induction should be FUN and agree with Nik a lot of procedural work can be done beforehand. Clive’s point of involving senior managers is also important. Searching for induction has shown me what a hot topic it is – not surprising in these times of skills shortage. Thanks again.

  9. More on Induction
    What does the panel think about ‘takeaways’ at the end of an Induction day. I’m loathe to send people away with armfuls of paper but what could be a relevant and memorable ‘gift’. For example, company branded pen/pencil, flashdrive, bag to carry stuff? Do people remember or need takeouts?

    (I have done a quick search on Induction and couldn’t spot a suitable response)

  10. People like them
    People like a good freebie, whether it adds anything to the value of training is probably moot.

    If you give people something for nothing, and as long as it’s not total rubbish (think balloons or stress balls here) then they will feel a bit more valued then they did before.

    I used to give professional leather look A4 pad and business card holders away as part of a software training course they only cost £2 or so but people really liked them and I’m positive it added to the feelgood factor surrounding the event but it didn’t improve their understanding at all.

  11. there’s a place for it
    Nick Kellingley said “DVD or e-learning inductions – horrible – all it says is we wanted to save some money in the long run and couldn’t be bothered to speak to you.”

    If that is all people get, then I agree, and Nick has obviously had a bad experience – but good quality e-learning makes people feel valued especially when presented as part of a programme of induction. It also means that the new entrant can find out about their company from Day 1

  12. Sorry but I’m sticking by my comments
    Sorry Tony, I’m sure you think that you’ve got a point with e-learning or DVDs but I’m standing by my original comments.

    There is nothing worse than joining a company and being locked in with a DVD or video or a PC rather than real people on Day 1.

    There is a time and place for this sort of learning and certainly for delivering skill set learning but not in induction.

    If the trainer and managers can’t provide this information in an easy to understand format to people who can then ask questions etc. then they are not really worth their salt.

    This kind of learning is a cost saving exercise in induction – pure and simple and I would urge everyone to reconsider using it in induction.

    And I have a large amount of experience with e-learning programmes but have never met inductees who would prefer a video/e-learning experience to a face to face meeting on the first day of the job.

  13. HUmans make us feel valued
    But I (and others) feel valued when I talk to a human being, its the human interaction bit that makes me feel valued not the machine – why dont you guys get that???

    Do you feel valued when you buy your rail tickets from a machine or do you feel its just another cost saving measure from the rail company to force you to serve yourself and still claim they are providing ‘customer service and choice’ – despite the huge queues at the counters?

  14. can’t leave it there
    Both of you seem to have a bad experience with e-learning – possibly because management misused it.

    We use a blended approach. Our e-learning package is interactive and fun as well as informative. We use it as an integral part of the induction process, and people value that. It isn’t cheap either.

    Of course poor e-learning is a total waste of time, but then so is a bad organised induction process, even if it was designed by a human

  15. Human v machine
    >>>>Both of you seem to have a bad experience with e-learning – possibly because management misused it>>>>

    No sir, I’ve just had better experiences when human beings are involved.

    Please dont blame the tools or those using them. Humans are far more flexible, adaptable and empathetic than machines.


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