In the construction industry, a strategic onboarding process can mean the difference between the success or failure of your new hire. Having a solid onboarding plan will put your team and your new employee on track for success. These tips will help you create an onboarding strategy that gives new hires the tools they need to thrive in their new work environment and increase engagement and retention.

Focus on Coming Up with a Solid Plan

First and foremost, you need an effective onboarding plan. Without a plan, you wind up teaching whatever is on your mind; and the process becomes disorganized. New hires will have information dumped on them from many different people, becoming overwhelming. The other advantage of having a solid plan is that new hires will know precisely what to expect. People are nervous when they start a new job and their anxiety will be alleviated if they know what to expect up front.

Set Expectations

Clear expectations help new hires feel more comfortable and confident. From the beginning, you should describe what to expect from the first day, the first week, and the first couple of months to the new hire. One way to understand the effectiveness of your onboarding process is to request feedback from your employees. You want to know if your expectations are clear and whether the expectations you define match up with the experiences that new hires have. The best way to know for sure is to ask your current employees.

Develop a Starter Task

It is a great idea to give new hires a starter task that will let you assess their ability to manage themselves. There isn’t one onboarding process that will work equally for everyone. Some may need less guidance, while others may benefit from having a mentor. Starter tasks can also introduce the new hire to their colleagues and help them make friends.

Regular Feedback

The use of score cards is another great strategy. For the first eight weeks, set five different expectations. At the end of each week, discuss a score from 1 to 10 for each expectation and provide feedback for why. Each Monday review the previous week’s score cards. This will normalize regular check-ins and ensure you address issues quickly.

It is also good to check in on new hires more frequently for the first few weeks (maybe twice a day). After the first couple of weeks, you can move to check in twice per week and eventually once a month.

A strategic onboarding plan helps new hires adjust to working in a new environment and provides them with the support they need to succeed. The key is to establish clear expectations and give hires the confidence they need to reach their potential.

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