9 Alternatives to Posting Open Positions on Job Boards

Dear, Anita,

I’ve been trying to hire a new Accountant for my department. Like in the past, I have advertised my opening on the large job boards, but it’s not getting the type of response that my ads did a couple of years ago. I notice that there are many options available to job seekers today when looking for a new job. Is there something else I could be trying? What do you recommend?

Newspaper_Ads_000008959134Dear, Board to Death,

CareerXroads’ Source of Hire Report notes that LinkedIn and job board aggregators (like Indeed.com) are playing a bigger role in recruiting, while traditional job boards like Monster and CareerBuilder are seeing declining traffic. (I remember when “help wanted” ads in the newspaper were the go-to for hiring managers!) While there’s no magic bullet, choose a few from this list to try. If they are successful, add them to your hiring toolbox for future use.

If the list below seems like an overwhelming amount of work over and above your regular day job duties, consider enlisting the aid of a professional staffing firm, such as The Select Family of Staffing Companies. Not just for temporary workers, Select’s divisions can find qualified candidates for direct hire positions. Its temp-to-hire solution is like an extended working interview that ensures the right fit.

  1. Niche Boards
    Since you’ve noticed decreasing results from generalist job boards, you may want to try an industry-specific website, such as Accounting Jobs Today in your case.
  2. Industry Associations
    Do you belong to any professional organizations in your field? Openings posted on associations’ job or career boards are more likely to hit closer to your target candidate. (Try The PASA: The Professional Accounting Society of America, or similar groups.)
  3. Craigslist
    Plenty of communities have vibrant Craigslist job boards. In many non-metro areas, posting an ad is – amazingly – still free.
  4. Social Networking
    Social Media Strategies Summit found that 78% of recruiters have hired through a social network (95% through LinkedIn, 24% through Facebook, and 14% through Twitter). So if you’re not a full-time recruiter, I’d invest my time in LinkedIn.Job_Fair_000027571881
  1. Job Fairs
    Larger businesses may host their own job fairs, and smaller businesses may participate in career fair events hosted by local chambers of commerce or area universities and colleges.
  2. Career Centers
    Local governments and educational institutions often have career centers. Be sure to alert these counselors to your open positions. In fact, if you often need young, enthusiastic employees, cozy up to the department chair in your discipline at the local college. He or she can be a valuable source of referrals.
  3. Referrals
    Undercover Recruiter claims that employee referrals have the highest applicant-to-hire conversion rate – only 7% apply but account for 40% of all hires. An added bonus is that applicants hired from a referral begin their position quicker than those found on job boards (29 days vs. 39 days).
  4. Fill from Within
    Companies fill 41% of their open positions with current employees, CareerXroads finds, from promotions or lateral moves. Not only is there the added benefit of the employee already knowing your company (culture, terminology, policies, workflow, etc.), which allows for quicker onboarding, but it also promotes loyalty among other employees who will view your company as a good place for professional development and movement along a career path.
  5. Your Company Website
    Companies who wish to maintain a strong pipeline of candidates make use of their own website. If you don’t have one already, add a Careers page. Check out ERE.net’s list of 10 Companies with Fantastic Career Sites for inspiration.

Hiring Managers: What has been your best source for new hires in the past 6 months?

Do you have a job-related question? Ask Anita.

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How to Find Jobs Not Advertised on the Top Job Boards, Part 1
How to Find Jobs Not Advertised on the Top Job Boards, Part 2
Onboarding New Employees

Overcoming Negative References

Hello, Anita,

Since 2010, I have not had the best fortune in regards to employment. In the myriad of positions held I did what I could not to burn bridges and always gave 2 weeks notice. If an employer were to verify my work history, is it true the only thing they can legally verify is if I worked there and eligibility for rehire? Can my previous employer disclose wage history or anything beyond the aforementioned items? I believe one of my previous employers (a former supervisor) may be providing negative information when contacted about my tenure. Thank you for any clarification you can provide in this matter.

Dear, Ruffled About References,

As I mention in my post Responding to Reference Check Requests, there are no Federal laws regarding what may or may not be divulged by a previous employer for a job reference (although compliance with the EEOC and Fair Credit Reporting Act is required). State laws regarding background checks vary; there’s a great Nolo website that outlines what information may be disclosed and who may receive that information, state by state.playing cards at computer

While it may be legal to answer many of the questions asked by reference checkers, HR departments these days, wishing to avoid discrimination and defamation lawsuits, are playing their cards close to the vest and not revealing much besides dates of employment. (Just try getting an opinion rather than a hard fact from a seasoned HR professional!) Of course, not everyone got this policy memo. Supervisors at smaller companies without strict HR guidelines may become Chatty Cathy when called for a reference.

Combat negative references by offering glowing testimonial reference letters instead. Attach them to your cover email before they are even asked for. When asked for a list of references, omit this former supervisor you think may be giving you a thumbs down, unless this was your most recent job. If your job list is as long as you imply, many employers (particularly smaller businesses) will call a few references  and, unless they’re getting any red flags, will call it a day before reaching out to each and every past employer on your lengthy résumé.

Thumbs_Down_000019178955If you are unable to omit this reference, you may want to address the issue head-on during the reference discussion. Tell your potential employer that you and your supervisor did not see eye to eye on certain issues and offer contact information for another colleague at that same company who may balance out the perspective.

Another tactic is to contact this former supervisor directly to clear the air. Ask whether, despite the bad  blood, you can come to a mutually agreeable response for him/her to give when called for reference checks. If you strongly feel that this supervisor is still dispensing inaccurate negative information (based not only on intuition, but feedback from interviewers), check to see if this manager is following his or her company’s HR policy for responding to reference requests.  If worse comes to worst, contact an employment attorney about the possibility of sending a cease and desist letter to your former boss.

Readers: Have you ever been surprised to hear you received a bad reference from a former employer?


Responding to Reference Check Requests
Finding Job References
Reference Check Response

Asking for Vacation Time

Hi, Anita,

 I am a manager over 11 employees. I believe I am well-respected by them and my authority is clear. Lately, I noticed that my employees are no longer asking me to take vacation but TELLING me when they will be out. In the past, it seems they were more courteous and asked for the time off. After all, it’s called a vacation request, right? Not vacation demand. I never say no but would appreciate the courtesy of being asked. Am I being too old school?

Two business peopleDear, Dinah Sore,

We relics of the polite era need to stick together. I get it; vacation is earned by employees, and I don’t begrudge that. In fact, I think it’s healthy to get a clean break from work without, dare I say it, having to check email and answer text messages. But what your staffers need to understand is that you as a manager may have other factors to consider: upcoming deadlines, new projects on the horizon, or other colleagues out of the office at the same time for business trips, vacations, or medical reasons.

Does your employee manual have a vacation request procedure? If not, you may wish to add some verbiage to your handbook for clarity. Can a vacation request be made in person or must be it be made in writing, either via email or by filling out a company form? Establish that all vacation requests must be approved X weeks in advance by the employee’s immediate supervisor. Many companies also include the caveat that vacation scheduling should be mindful of a company’s operational requirements. (I doubt many UPS drivers get vacation requests approved for Christmastime!) It may be a good time to clear up other vacation policy conundrums. (Can employees who have accrued multiple weeks of vacation time take them consecutively?  When two employees request the same time period off, does the staffer with seniority take precedence?) The sample policy at HRSimple.com may address some, but not all, of your needs.

And now, for the other side of the coin. Depending on how formal or informal your company culture (and your relationship with your supervisor), here are several ways for employees to ask for vacation time.

  1. Ask instead of tell. “Ms. Supervisor, I have four vacation days left, and I’d love to use them the third week of June. Is that possible?”
  2. Plan around your workload. You’ll earn your manager’s appreciation when you show you’re aware of the side effects of your vacation time. “Mr. Boss, I’d really like to schedule a vacation. I know we are wrapping up that big project at the end of next month. Do you have any objections to me scheduling my trip after that from July 6-10?”
  1. Give plenty of notice. As soon as you get that invitation to your cousin’s graduation or find that great package deal on VacationsToDieFor.com, put in your vacation request. “I just got some exciting news. My brother’s wedding is December 17. I wanted to ask to use my accrued vacation time from Dec. 14-19.” Time off around the holidays is popular, so ask well in advance.People going to work and vacation concept
  2. Put it in writing. It’s not a bad idea to have a paper trail. If your company doesn’t have a standard form, use one of these more conventional sample vacation request letters from LoveToKnow.com.
  3. Email your request. If your company is a little less formal, an email request may suffice. “I would like to request the following days off: March 14-18. Please let me know if you have any concerns or anticipate any issues regarding my request.”
  4. If you haven’t earned it/used it. “While I [haven’t accrued / have used all my] vacation time, I would like to request time off for my parents’ 25th anniversary. May I take off September 18 -21 – unpaid?
  5. Mention flexibility. “I haven’t finalized my vacation plans, as I’m still checking out airfares and resort availability, but I would like to take my vacation sometime in mid-August. Are there certain days that would work better for me to be gone?”
  6. Note limitations. “Because I will be on a cruise in the Mediterranean, please note that I will have limited access to the Internet during these days.”

Employees: How do you ask for vacation time off?
Managers: Have you ever had to deny someone’s vacation request? For what reason?

Do you have a job-related question? Ask Anita.

Subscribe to receive weekly emails with career tips and advice for job seekers, employed people, and managers and supervisors.

The Importance of Vacations
Unlimited Vacation: Benefit or Burden?
Rules for Requesting R and R
Proper Use of Sick Days

How to Get Past the Phone Interview

Dear, Anita,

It seems like more HR departments are starting with a phone interviews these days, which is tricky because I am currently employed. I’ve had a few phone interviews recently that haven’t led to an invitation for an in-person interview. How can I make a better impression on the telephone?

Woman_Cell_Phone_iStock_000000292386_SmallDear, Can You Hear Me Now?,

Phone screening of candidates is definitely becoming more common. With so many applications submitted for each position, hiring managers don’t have the time to meet every applicant in person.

First things first. While you are job hunting, be sure to answer your cell phone professionally at all times. Check out Careerealism’s blog What To Say When An Interviewer Calls You At A Bad Time. It is a delicate undertaking to convene a phone interview while you are on the clock at your current employer. Try to schedule the pre-interview during your usual lunch time. If the hiring manager is unavailable in the middle of the day, you may need to ask your boss for time off for a vague “appointment” (you’ll want to save other personal days for on-site interviews).

Right before the scheduled time, close your office door, if you have one. If you’re part of a cubicle farm, find a private place with five-bar cell phone reception. You may have to take the call in your vehicle. Don’t just go outside and interview on the sidewalk; background street noise can be very distracting. Side note to unemployed job seekers: do not conduct a phone interview in your pajamas while lying on the sofa. Get up, get dressed, and sit up straight! (How’s that for tough love?) It’s amazing how attitude can be subtly transmitted through a telephone call.

Some people may shine during phone interviews, feeling less nervous than they would in person. (After all, the hiring manager can’t see that you are sweating through your jacket!) However, not everyone has great phone charisma. Just like actors in live theater have to over-emote to reach the audience in the balcony, you may have to pump up the enthusiasm in your voice when the interviewer can’t see your forward-leaning body language and the energetic gleam in your eye.

The interviewer may ask some basic pre-screening questions, or he or she may jump into the deep end with the “big” questions. Ready yourself for a phone interview just as you would for a face-to-face meeting – be prepared for anything.

Businessman on the beachIf you are asked to interview via Skype or video conference, additional groundwork is required. You’ll want to dress exactly as if you were going to a “real” interview, so make sure your outfit is pressed and ready. Find the best vantage point to set up your web cam, tablet, or phone to have the least distracting background possible. You don’t want interviewer to see your messy desk or unwashed dishes in your kitchen sink. Get opinions from friends or trusted colleagues on your backdrop, and ask them for feedback on your posture, facial expression, and speech patterns.

At the end of the phone interview, or an in-person interview for that matter, be sure you understand what to expect next and the timeframe you may hear back from the company.  Just like you send a thank you for a face-to-face interview, you should follow up with this same courtesy for a virtual interview.

Readers: How often are you asked for phone pre-interviews? Have you ever had an embarrassing interruption while on a phone interview?

Do you have a job-related question? Ask Anita.

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Landing a Job Long Distance
Take Stock with a Mock Interview

Creating a Recognition Culture

Dear, Anita,

Do you have any new ideas on how our office can celebrate Administrative Professionals Day?Admin_Professional_Day_iStock_000001586762_Small

Dear, No More Flowers,

Administrative Professionals Week® (Wait, what?! There’s a whole week?) is generally celebrated the last full week of April, according to it founder, the International  Association of Administrative Professionals (IAAP), with Administrative Professionals Day® celebrated on Wednesday of that week – April  22 this year. The commemoration exists to honor admins’ positive contributions to offices around the world.

11 Things You Didn't Know About Employee RecognitionWhile it’s a great idea to set aside a special time to focus on these individuals and perhaps treat them to free lunch, a better modus operandi is to create a recognition culture in your workplace. It not only helps morale, but it impacts the bottom line. How? Increased productivity/better customer service from engaged workers, and lower costs related to turnover, as the infographic from Officevibe shows.

David Novak, author of Taking People With You: The Only Way to Make Big Things Happen, tells how he realized recognition needed to be a priority. On a routine visit to canvass salespeople about display and merchandising, everyone raved about an employee named Bob and what a great job he did. This brought Bob to tears because in his 47 years with the company, he never got this kind of positive feedback.

Don’t make your subordinates wait that long for an “Atta Boy.”  We human beings crave a sense of significance and one measure is esteem from others. It’s important to feel important!

Kim Harrison of Cutting Edge PR defines employee recognition as “timely, informal or formal acknowledgement of a person’s or team’s behavior, effort or business result that supports the organization’s goals and values.”

Formal recognition includes things like:

  • Milestone awards given at annual conventions
  • Employee of the Month

Informal recognition ideas:

  • “Thank You Thursdays”
  • Traveling trophies
  • On-the-spot award gift cards
  • Celebrating birthdays
  • Day-to-day positive interactions with managers and peers

What do employees want? According to Quantum Workplace’s 2014 Recognition Trends Report, 60 percent said a pay increase was an important form of recognition. (Not surprising, but compensation is really different from recognition.) What I found interesting was that #2 on the list was access to new learning/training opportunities, beating out a spontaneous cash bonus or time off. For the third year on the row, a personalized gift like a plaque ranked last. In the spirit of fun, Novak, now CEO of Yum Brands Inc., has given out hundreds of unconventional Rubber Chicken Awards to his KFC employees. The award has morphed into a set of plastic teeth with legs denoting they “walk the talk.” I don’t know about you, but I’d rather get one of these goofy awards than another Lucite dust collector.

Points recognition programs (similar to frequent flyer miles or brand loyalty awards) allow employees to accumulate points for achieving benchmarks (or peers can even grant points for a job well done). The points may be accumulated and redeemed for rewards from a gift catalog. Choose a program carefully, as some catalogs offer off-brand, cheap goods; is that any way to express appreciation to an employee?

Honestly, sometimes the simplest things done regularly can have an amazing effect. A personal thank you note or email after a job well done can do wonders for employee satisfaction.

Need more ammunition to convince higher-ups to create a recognition culture? Blackhawk Engagement Solutions put together 23 Employment Motivation Statistics to Silence Naysayers.

Readers: How does your company appreciate white and pink collar workers on Administrative Professionals Day – or all year long?

Do you have a job-related question? Ask Anita.

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“Atta Girl” – Handling Compliments at Work
Spring Clean Your Management Style
Holiday Parties, Payouts, and Perks

Reverse Snooping on Potential Employers

Dear, Anita,

Once I land an interview, I check out the company website and LinkedIn. But if I don’t have any LinkedIn contacts that work there, how can I get the “inside story” about the culture?

Keyhole_Eye_SmallDear, Curious Kat,

Human Resource professionals often perform Google searches and check social media sites to see if a candidate is a good fit for their company culture. Job seekers desperately looking for work don’t often think to turn the tables. But the time spent on researching a company and its culture may prevent a disruptive blip in your career path.

The company website is a great place to start. Most businesses have an “About” tab at the top or link at the bottom of website. Read through it all, including the history and the bios of the management. Even for a business that doesn’t spell out the mission or core principles of its company culture, you’ll get a sense about the company’s personality based on the tone, photo style, and other subtle cues. This research will also pay off when your interviewer asks, “What do you know about our company?” and “Why do you want to work here?”

Next, Google the company name for which you are interviewing. Pass over the company sites you just reviewed and look for third-party sites. Wikipedia may contain additional information (some companies, however, are contributors to their own Wiki listing). On the Google search page, switch from “Web” and click “News” under the search field. While some of this news content may be derived from press releases provided by the business itself, you may be able to glean some insight into the company character or discover some potential red flags.

Glassdoor.com is a website that allows real employees to anonymously review current or former employers, giving the pros and cons of working at the company. You may even get a sneak peak at questions that could be asked during your interview.

Look at other business review sites, such as Yelp.com, YellowPages.com, or MerchantCircle.com. While businesses are reviewed by customers rather than employees, you may be able to intuit company values and business practices. Take these reviews with a grain of salt, however, as there are trolls on the Internet who take perverse pleasure in spreading negativity.

As you’ve found, LinkedIn is a great resource. I’m sure you’ve noticed the “How You’re Connected” sidebar whenever you check out a LinkedIn company profile. But have you ever clicked on “Advanced” to the right of the search box on the Home page bar? There, you can expand the relationships from 1st or 2nd to 3rd + Everyone Else. Under company, leave “Current or past” highlighted for the most hits. Once you perform your advanced search, check out the longer list of shared connections and message or connect with the individuals to see if they are willing to chat with you about their experience working at the company.

A little cyber sleuthing before accepting a position can prevent the whole frying pan/fire scenario.

Readers: How has researching a company affected your interview, or your decision to take a position offered?

Do you have a job-related question? Ask Anita.

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World’s Worst Jobs
Online Reputation Monitoring
Transparent Salaries: From Hourly Employees to the CEO
Your Company’s Reputation and Attracting Talent

100,000 Subscribers and Counting!

Celebrate colorful background with balloons.Dear, Readers,

I’m so excited, I just had to share this milestone: Job Talk with Anita Clew has reached over 100,000 subscribers! I started the blog when unemployment was a 9.8%, doling out advice to do my part to help the slow recovery from the Great Recession.

Why not take a moment to check out some of the most-read posts of all time in
the archives?
#1: How to Get Hired if You Don’t Have Experience
#2: Time Theft: Is it really a crime?
#3: Contacting a Company After an Interview
#4: Disclosure of a DUI
#5: Post-Interview Advice
#6: Why So Many Interviews?
#7: Online Application – No Calls
#8: Saying “no” to working late
#9: Interview Questions
#10: Reference Check Response

Thank you, loyal subscribers, for sticking with Job Talk through thick and thin.

Readers: What was the most valuable piece of advice you ever received from yours truly, Miss Anita?

Public Speaking Jitters

Dear, Anita,

I’ve been asked by my manager to present a report at next month’s departmental meeting. It’s not a lot of people, but I’m still anxious. I’ve got to create a PowerPoint, and I haven’t had much experience speaking in front of a group.
Any advice for me?

Nervous Woman Holding MicrophoneDear, Nervous Kelly,

Your manager has given you a great opportunity to get your oratory feet wet in front of your “peeps.” Your coworkers are friendly faces, and they are going to be rooting for you. Knowing that should alleviate half your fears.

The second key is preparation. I’m sure your manager has given you some guidance on talking points he’d like you to highlight from the report. Avoid text-heavy slides (the detailed information is in the report they’ll receive, after all). To keep your audience engaged, don’t simply read your PowerPoint slides verbatim. Use them as cues to explain, discuss, or go into more detail. Write your script in the Notes section of PowerPoint, and use the Presenter mode.

Once you’ve finalized your PowerPoint and your boss has approved, rehearse your script. Out loud. Close your office door so you won’t have to give your coworkers a spoiler alert. Or bring your laptop home and present to your dog. You may even want to do a dry run in the meeting room, so you won’t have any technical snafus that will sabotage your concentration on the big day.

Public_Speaking_Jitters_0315To calm your nerves, start out with a smile. Try for a conversational delivery (steer clear of a monotone drone) in a voice loud enough for all in the room to hear. Some people rush when they are nervous, so make a point to speak slowly and clearly, but with inflection. Other novice speechmakers tend to hold their breath. Back in the days of 3×5 cards, I used to write “Breathe!” on the bottom of each card. Remember to take a deep breath during each slide transition. Be sure to look up from your notes and make eye contact with your audience (your best buddies will be sure to smile their encouragement). If you lose your train of thought, just pause and regroup. Chances are, no one will even notice the hesitation.

If this is something you may need to do on a regular basis for your position (and in your career down the road) check out Toastmasters International, an organization that helps members improve their communication skills. You can join one of the 14,000+ clubs and practice giving speeches in a supportive environment.

Readers: What’s your best advice for overcoming pre-speech jitters?

Do you have a job-related question? Ask Anita.

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Perfecting Public Speaking

Crimes and Misdemeanors

Dear, Anita,

I worked for a company for a total of 13 years, in 2010 I caught a charge that was a misdemeanor but still continue to work for the same company for 2 more years, then got fired for what they say was misconduct. Now I’m having problems trying to find a job, I’ve been applying for jobs every since August of last year, hoping that something will fall through for me soon. Any advice for me?

Mug_Shot_iStock_000014052000_300pxDear, Miss Demeanor,

I get quite a few inquiries from job seekers with criminal records, both felonies and misdemeanors. (My post Disclosure of a DUI is one of my top 5 posts of all time.) It’s not surprising since nearly one-third of Americans have been arrested by age 23, a National Institute of Justice article observes. Criminal records range from one-time arrests where charges are dropped to serious repeat offenders, but most arrests are for relatively minor nonviolent offenses.

Since you have a misdemeanor on your record and you’ve been fired, that could count as two strikes against you in the eyes of a potential employer. Check out my blog Explaining Away “You’re Fired.” Since you worked at the company for 13 years, you must include it on your résumé and applications. The misdemeanor, however, may be a different story, depending on where you live. In recent years, some cities and states have prohibited public and sometimes private employers from asking for criminal histories. See the areas with “Ban the Box” policies at the National Employment Law Project (NELP). Positions in fields such as law enforcement, education, or care giving may require full criminal record disclosure, even misdemeanors. Be sure to read applications carefully; some only ask about felonies and not misdemeanors. Others may state a specific time period, such as “in the last seven years.” You don’t want to hide it, as it will come out if and when an employer performs a background check.

Police officer conducting sobriety testThe U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) offers guidelines for employers on consideration of job applicants’ criminal histories. While these are not policy or law (so not really enforceable in many states), the top three factors employers should consider are: 1) the nature and gravity of offense, 2) time lapse since the offense, and 3) the nature of the job. While an employer with an open accounting position should be hesitant to hire someone who, say, embezzled from a charity, a middle-aged candidate with one sole DUI from college days might fill the position without any issues. Try to apply to jobs that have nothing to do with your infraction (so no driving jobs if you have a DUI on record).

If your misdemeanor is really holding you back, consider having it expunged from your record (sealed from all but law enforcement). The procedure varies from state to state, so you may wish to consult an employment attorney.

Job Seekers: How have you gotten a job with a misdemeanor on your record?
Hiring Managers: Do you have any advice on how job seekers can best present any criminal records?

Do you have a job-related question? Ask Anita.

Subscribe to receive weekly emails with career tips and advice for job seekers, employed people, and managers and supervisors.

Finding Jobs for Ex-Felons
Disclosure of a DUI
Explaining Away “You’re Fired”
Time Theft: Is it Really a Crime?

Onboarding New Employees

Dear, Anita,

We’ve had a lot of turnover in our company lately, a few in my own department (I manage IT). We try to get quality candidates who can hit the ground running. But it seems that there are always some fires to put out, so we tend to throw people in the deep end and hope they can swim. Many are sinking instead. I really don’t have time to keep training new people who turn around and leave. What can we do to improve our retention?

SONY DSCDear, Concerned Captain,

Voluntary turnover (or quits, as the Bureau of Labor Statistics calls them) was on the rise in 2014 for private industries. With a tighter labor market (where there are more jobs than qualified workers), dissatisfied employees are more likely to jump ship. So let’s talk about how to get employees to stay at your company, or at least in your department.

Proper onboarding is important because turnover is costly – in time, recruiting costs, productivity loss, and morale. Onboarding is more than just filling out the HR forms and attending an orientation meeting. It’s the process of organizational socialization. You want to teach your new staffer about your company’s mission, values, and culture, as well as how he or she fits into your department and the organization as a whole.

To make an employee’s first day a less stressful experience, plan ahead for a smooth arrival. Since you’re in IT, I hope your business has a new hire portal that allows electronic completion of forms such as the W-4, I-9, etc. and access to the company’s policy handbook. Humanizing this portal with a welcome message from the manager as well as photos of teammates can go a long way toward easing the rookie’s mind.

Empty_Chair_iStock_000000515158_SmallYou don’t want your new hire to show up and have no place to sit or a cubicle without a workstation. It’s up to you to provide all the tools to do the assignments for which you’ve hired him. Job duties should be outlined in a detailed, clearly written manual, hopefully in an electronic version that is easily searchable. Video training is great for visual learners, assuming you have the resources. If the outgoing employee is available to train the new recruit, take advantage of the opportunity for job shadowing.

While the first day is important to make the employee feel welcomed and valued, effective onboarding lasts weeks or months. It can take up to a year for a new employee to become fully productive. Check in regularly with your freshman – not just in passing – with weekly or even daily meetings to ensure tasks are understood and completed and to gauge satisfaction of both parties.

Readers: What is your company’s best onboarding practice?

Do you have a job-related question? Ask Anita.

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Getting Started
New Hire Training
Becoming the Boss: Advice for New Managers

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Anita Clew's blog posts are intended for general guidance and should never be taken as legal advice. In all instances where harassment, inequity, or unfair treatment is believed to be present, please consult your HR Department or legal representation.
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