How to help a new employee adapt if the work is remote

Instructions for those who do not want people to run away from the company after a few weeks. -esli-rabota-udaljonnaja-42822b1.jpg” alt=”How to help a new employee adapt if the job is remote” />

Anastasia Borovskaya Director of the Russian School of Management. Under her leadership, a small company has grown into a major educational center.

With the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, the labor market has changed dramatically. Interviews have switched to an online format, companies have transferred employees to remote work, and you no longer need to come to the office to apply for a job.

In an unusual reality, long-established methods of onboarding employees have stopped working: now newcomers may not appear in the office weeks or even live in another city.

How online onboarding differs from usual

At first glance, it seems that working remotely is a great option for a beginner. He will not have to communicate with chatty colleagues, waste time to impress the “old guard” or keep some kind of image. In fact, all communication will be businesslike and not so frequent.

And this is precisely the main difficulty of online onboarding. The new employee is cut off from the usual office life. He does not boil in the common cauldron of corporate values: he does not talk to colleagues during breaks, does not communicate with people from other departments unnecessarily, and skips general activities. And such a person is unlikely to have attachment to a cozy office in a beautiful place. So it is much more difficult to get a new employee interested and keep them for a long time.

In addition, adaptation tools differ significantly in the office and remotely.

Task Office < strong>Remote
Introducing the company (missions, values, corporate culture) Welcome trainings, corporate merchandise, presentations Official documents and presentations, online meetings
Meet the team Office tours, get-togethers, get-togethers, meetings Online meetings< /td>
Corporate events Team building, offline corporate holidays, face-to-face training, joint lunches, smoke breaks Games, parties and trainings online

And companies either use non-working schemes and can’t cope with the adaptation of newcomers to remote work, or they completely forget about onboarding when it comes to remote employees. The latter are left alone at home and offered no help or guidance. And then people quickly leave the company without really getting to know anyone.

What are the main tasks of online adaptation

There are two things to consider when onboarding remotely.

  1. It is important to make the employee feel like part of the team, even if they are not in the office. To do this, you must constantly keep in touch with the person and promptly help with emerging problems. And everyone has them in the new conditions.
  2. It is necessary that the employee clearly understands what is expected of him and what he himself can count on. It is better to provide the most complete information about working conditions, tasks and opportunities in the very first days.

On the one hand, this will help the newcomer avoid a lack of communication and better get used to the team without experiencing too much stress due to difficulties. On the other hand, it will allow a person to clearly understand his duties. The second task is just as important as the first: surveys show that the mismatch between expectations and reality is a common reason for leaving. So, it was named Job Seeker Nation Study 2018/Jobvite by 43% of the surveyed employees who left in the first three months of work.

Who should be involved in the adaptation process

It is better to identify these people in advance so that everyone clearly understands their tasks and roles. In this case, the likelihood that some blind spots will remain is reduced. The following should be involved in onboarding:

  • Human Resources Manager. He will bear the organizational burden. He will have to create an adaptation plan, instruct the leader and mentor, and introduce the newcomer to the company.
  • Direct manager.It is he who sets tasks, controls work, gives feedback and solves key problems.
  • Mentor. This can be either one of the colleagues or the leader. The mentor helps with daily activities, introduces the features of the job and the company, shares life hacks and supports the newcomer.
  • Team members.As a rule, these are employees of the department in which the person got a job. Their task is not only to participate in joint meetings, but also to insure and support the newcomer.

How to organize the first day of work of the newcomer

The main task is to introduce the company and employees , as well as identify work tasks for the near future.

Introducing the company's values

In some companies, newcomers are immediately sent a bunch of documents by mail and offered to familiarize themselves with them. As a result, a person can read job descriptions and product descriptions all day long, watch presentations about the company's mission and values ​​alone.

This is not the best idea: it is important that the employee first gets acquainted with the corporate culture through real examples and only then he consolidated the information with the help of documents and other materials.

It is better to discuss the company and its values ​​in a personal conversation. Wellcome training or a meeting with the leader are suitable for this.

The first format is suitable when several new people have joined the company at once. In this case, it is convenient to organize an online conference where the HR manager or head of the HR department will talk about the company. It is important to rely on specific examples. So, if the value of the organization is people, it is worth describing how they are taken care of (for example, psychological trainings are conducted).

First meeting with the head

culture the leader should tell the newcomer at the first meeting. It also needs to be discussed:

  • the tasks and responsibilities of the employee, the more specific the better;
  • technical aspects of work, for example, how tasks are set and controlled, whether there is a reporting system, what services are used;
  • regulations for planning meetings and meetings ;
  • features of interaction with the manager on work issues (where and when it is better to write);
  • plan for the first day.

It is important during a conversation to sort out a few important nuances that usually worry beginners:

  • how long it takes to wait for an answer on tasks before reminding yourself;
  • how clearly the working day is regulated and what hours and days you can not be in touch (people often work remotely, so it’s important to tell how long they can rest in peace);
  • how the vacation schedule is formed, when the first vacation is possible and for how many days it is given;
  • what are the rules adopted in the company regarding sick leave and time off;< /li>
  • on what days and in what parts the salary is paid.

Meeting with colleagues

It can be organized by the HR manager or direct supervisor. It is necessary to invite other employees of the department where the newcomer came to, including the mentor, if his role was not taken by the boss himself.

The meeting itself is best held in the middle of the day, for example, in Zoom. The first step is to ask the newcomer to introduce himself. If he is shy, the manager can describe the new employee himself and only then give him the floor.

Then let his colleagues tell about themselves. Just ask them to talk in advance not only about work experience, education, hobbies, but also about their area of ​​​​responsibility and possible points of contact with the newcomer. Thanks to this, he will know who and why he can contact.

A meeting with the manager at the end of the day

It is needed to find out how the first day of the employee went, what questions he had and what difficulties arose.

To avoid monosyllabic answers, you can ask additional questions that will help you better analyze the emotions and thoughts of the beginner:

  • What did you like the most? What things caused pleasant emotions, and what caused anxiety?
  • How understandable and convenient are the working tools? What difficulties arose in using them?
  • How did the person understand their tasks and responsibilities? Can he describe them in detail?
  • How does the employee plan to build his work in the coming days? Where will it start? What does he expect to accomplish?

How to organize a newbie's first week of work

At this stage, it is important to provide the beginner with calm and certainty. Therefore, you need to draw up a clear schedule with all the cases and projects in which the employee will participate. Most likely, these will be various online meetings with the participation of a manager, mentor or team.

In addition, you need to set aside time to:

  1. Disassemble the business -processes.It is necessary to tell once again about all the organizational issues, regulations and standards that are important for the employee. The better the latter understands the mechanics of work, the faster he will be able to adapt.
  2. Describe the motivation system. It is necessary that it be completely understandable to the beginner. He must know how the salary is calculated, what bonuses he can receive, what KPIs he needs to achieve.
  3. Warn about possible problems.In any work there are bottlenecks that can lead to a dead end. Therefore, it is important to discuss the problems that most often arise and tell how to act in these situations. It is better to warn the newcomer about all possible difficulties.

All these questions are quickly analyzed by the manager on the first day of the newcomer's work. However, it is impossible to absorb such a large amount of information at once. You will have to repeat it several times so that the employee does not miss anything. In addition, a beginner can be involved in several projects at once. And it is important to analyze the specifics of each of them.

How to organize the first month of work for a beginner

During this period, you need to build a work process, so it is important that the leader or mentor constantly monitor the newcomer and be in touch. This will allow you to control and direct the employee and not leave you alone with problems.

The most convenient way is interaction through online task setting systems. With their help, you can track the work process and hours of employee activity (for example, when he creates tasks or is in principle in the system). This will prevent overwork or, conversely, excessive negligence. And also – to understand which tasks cause more problems for a beginner.

Special attention should be paid to feedback. It must be constructive, clear and constant. In the first month, it is better to communicate with a beginner at least several times a day using video calls or instant messengers. During such conversations, you need to clarify tasks, sort out mistakes, help to cope with difficulties and reassure if something went wrong.

This does not mean that it is necessary to monitor every action of a beginner. The main thing is to clearly set a task for him, give all the necessary input, set evaluation criteria and determine how and when the employee will receive feedback on the work done.

How to evaluate the results of adaptation

Although the probationary period often lasts three months, by the end of the first, the employee must fully adapt to work in a new place. It is unprofitable to stretch the onboarding process too long, real results are still important for business.

That is why, at the end of the first month of work, it is useful for a beginner to have an online meeting with a manager or HR manager. During the conversation, it is worth doing a little survey.

  • How does the job meet personal expectations? What moments do you like, and what do you confuse?
  • How is communication with colleagues built? How quickly and how effectively do you manage to resolve work issues with them? What are the problems?
  • In what direction does the person plan to move within the framework of work? What are your personal goals and objectives?
  • Are the company's key goals clear? Do they relate to work tasks?
  • What emotions does working in the company evoke? How anxious or fun was the first month?
  • Have you encountered any technical difficulties while working with services within the company?

The answers to these questions will help you gauge how confident and calm the newbie is whether he is set to work in the company and what problems need to be solved.

During the meeting, it is also important to give detailed feedback: discuss with the newcomer his strengths and weaknesses, and be sure to praise him. When discussing the skills that need to be developed, specific recommendations need to be made. If the manager considers the new employee very promising, then the latter can be offered additional training at this stage.

If the conversation is productive, it will be possible to increase the employee's loyalty and his confidence that he will be able to work comfortably and efficiently in this company .