Recruiting, Interviewing, Selecting and Orienting New Employees

By Diane Arthur | Go to book overview

CHAPTER 15
Beyond the Fundamentals of
Employee Orientation
Recently, a client asked me to help redesign his company's organizational orientation program. I agreed. As part of the process, I spoke with many employees about various facets of orientation. Among other questions, I asked, “For comparative purposes, can you briefly describe the orientation program at your last place of employment?” Here's a sampling of some of the answers I received:
“What orientation? At my last company all we did was sit around for three hours and fill out a bunch of forms in human resources.”
“Orientation lasted a week—I wanted to cry, it was so boring. The only good part was the tour.”
“I shadowed an employee from my department for a couple of days. He took me on a tour, introduced me to everyone, and took me to lunch. Then there was a general orientation for all new hires the following week. That lasted three days and I really learned a lot. My only complaint was that my manager was virtually invisible throughout the entire process. In fact, I didn't even meet with her until the end of my first week on the job.”
“Orientation at my last company was online; it was cool. I learned at my own pace and no one made me participate in dumb, getting-to-know-you types of activities. Sorry—I guess that's the techie in me talking. I just prefer learning on my own.”
“I worked at a large corporation where the orientation program you participated in depended on your job: Technical employees had their own session, executives met separately, and so on. The process made me feel kind of isolated. I couldn't help but wonder what the others were learning in their sessions.”
“My last job was keen on keeping up with the latest trends. With regard to orientation, that meant going a step further and implementing an 'onboarding' program. It was intense but very effective. It really enhanced employer/ employee relations.”

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