Effective Methods to Engage New Recruits

First Week Fails webinar with Kara Rice. Image courtesy of Multifamily Insiders

During the latest Multifamily Insiders Wednesday Webinar virtual conferences, Kara Rice, Director of Communications with fast bunnyled the event titled “First Week Fails: The Mistakes Managers Make When Onboarding a New Team Member”.

The webinar discussed effective methods hiring managers can use to ensure new hires have a rewarding experience when starting a new position. Rice noted that an employee’s first day at their new job can be chaotic and uncomfortable.


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“Most new hires leave full of optimism. They have stars in their eyes thinking about the quality of their new work,” she said.

Create a good “first day feeling”

A new employee ending their first days may end up wondering if they made the right decision to join the company. Rice advised managers to focus on what she called “day one feeling.”

“Think about what happens at the end of the very first day on the job when your new employee comes home and their loved one asks, ‘How was your day?’ What will their answer to that question be?You want it to be “this place looks really great” or “this job looks really interesting, and I feel like I can add value here,” Rice said.

Creating a positive feeling from day one in a new hire will establish an emotional connection to the job and help them feel fit to stick around. Rice pointed out that, according to Gallup, a third of all new hires won’t even last 90 days at their new job. Glass Door found that a strong onboarding process can improve new hire productivity by 70% and improve retention by 82%.

According to Contractor, it takes an average of 68 days to fill a vacancy. The Society of Human Resource Management has determined that replacing a team member can cost 50-200% of their salary.

“This includes all expenses related to hiring, recruiting and training. It’s a really big impact on your bottom line,” Rice said.

Avoid seven common mistakes

The webinar revealed seven mistakes hiring managers make with new hires and offered suggestions for avoiding those mistakes. Rice said supervisors’ first miscalculation is to underestimate the importance of onboarding experience. Many don’t pay enough attention to starting a new employee off with a great start.

She thought it was ironic that property management companies spend a lot of time, energy and money making a fantastic first impression for their prospects and residents, but don’t spend the same effort on a new employee.

“We have to rely on those same skills that we use to wow our resident customers to wow our new hires who are in effect internal customers,” she said.

Another mistake supervisors can make is not keeping in touch with newly hired employees once they’ve accepted a job offer. The period between when a candidate accepts the job and when it starts can be stressful for them. Rice observed that new hires may have received other job offers, making it risky for managers to shut up before starting.

“You don’t want them slipping through your fingers until day one,” she said.

The individual may have many questions, such as what to wear to the office or where can they park, or should they bring their own tools? They may prefer not to bother you to avoid appearing boring before they even start their new job. Rice suggested that this is a great time for managers to involve other team members to connect a new hire with their future co-workers and build camaraderie with them.

be ready

A third mistake supervisors can make is not being ready for someone starting their new job. Swift Bunny surveyed newly hired employees of property management organizations and found that lack of preparation was more the norm than the exception. Rice detailed that 45% said their first week was disorganized, 29% said technology wasn’t set up for them, 25% didn’t learn how to use the phone, voicemail or communication systems. messaging and 36% did not have enough time to complete their training.

“All of this makes this new recruit feel like she wasn’t ready for me here and this place is a little chaotic. Does the left hand know what the right hand is doing?” she declared.

Supervisors should also think carefully when hiring new employees, as they know the rhythms of the office and the busiest or slowest times in the business. Rice advised managers to consider the appropriate day and time to start a new hire to ensure they have enough time to spend with the person.

They also need to have the person’s workspace, technology, passwords and credentials at their fingertips. Too often, an employee shows up for their first day and no one knows where they should sit, or the new employee has to clean up the trash from the last person in their office. Rice pointed out that now is a great time to wrap up existing team members who can take on the responsibility of welcoming a new team member.

The fourth mistake supervisors can make is believing they can improvise a good experience for a new hire when they start. It is crucial that hiring managers anticipate and plan for the new employee with clearly defined training objectives. If the new employee is going to follow an existing and experienced employee, supervisors must choose the right person to be the leader of this relationship.

“Don’t just pawn your new recruit on any hot body to show them the ropes. You have to think about it,” Rice said.

She liked the idea of ​​team training, where several members of the existing team are enlisted to introduce the new employee to different aspects of their job. This connects the new recruit to more people in the organization and spreads the burden so that no one has to bear the responsibility for training.

Socialize effectively

Rice advised managers not to overlook the importance of socializing the new hire with everyone on their team. The colleagues a new employee interacts with on a daily basis can make or break their work experience. Supervisors should help individuals build relationships with their new colleagues.

Managers should ensure that all team members are on board to create a solid onboarding process for a new staff member. In a time of very high turnover, supervisors must ensure that existing team members do not undermine their efforts with negative feedback.

Burrowing new hires in paperwork to keep them busy or sitting them in front of a computer to conduct online training are two other mistakes supervisors can make.

“You want to involve this new hire in the real work that you hired them to do. That’s how you make them feel like they made the right choice in taking this job with you,” Rice said.

The last common mistake managers can make is thinking short term. The individual is still a new recruit at the end of his first day. The onboarding process will not only take eight hours.

“Onboarding is going to take days, weeks or even months. You want to think about this process. Over time, it will be a less time-consuming activity for you, but there are still steps you want to take,” said she added.

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