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Onboard New Employees the Right Way - 5 Easy Wins

The first day on any new job is tough.  It comes with the usual craziness of learning the ropes, putting names to faces and sorting out all the paperwork, policies and procedures of what goes where and who does what.  And there’s always that little voice in the back of your mind saying, “Will they like me?  Will they think I’m good at what I do?  Will I fit in?”

So when I came to Rebel on my first day (this isn’t my first rodeo, by the way) as the new Customer Experience Manager, I readied myself for all those same feelings to hit again.

But this first day experience was different (and awesome), because Rebel did these 5 things:

1. Start onboarding during the interview phase

White neon "work room" sign outside a trendy storefront
Photo by Geraldine Lewa / Unsplash

Rebel’s culture was obvious from the interview process.  The vibe felt right.  The people who interviewed me were cool, smart, savvy and real.  There was no pretense, no gaming, no bullshit.  The interview was definitely an evaluation of how well I could do the job – and also about how I could contribute to Rebel’s culture. The team’s passion to succeed came through loud and clear.  When I walked in that first day, I knew what kind of culture to expect.

2. Share something about your new employee before they start

A smiling woman using a smartphone while standing outdoors
Photo by rawpixel.com / Unsplash

Before I started Rebel had me fill out a fun facts questionnaire – that asked everything from my favorite candy to which actor would play me in the movie story of my life, and even about the bravest thing I’d ever done. On my first day, my new colleagues already knew a few random things about me (the kind of things that can take years to come up in conversation), making those first interactions feel much more personal.

3. Have the team come introduce themselves


Photo by rawpixel.com / Unsplash

This may seem like a no-brainer, but it made a huge difference that as soon as I arrived, people were walking up to me at my new desk, introducing themselves and welcoming me.  They already knew my name and they knew what I was there to do. Rebel also has a great online tool that lists each employee, with their photo and title, so I didn’t have to worry about getting names wrong or forgetting who does what within the company.

4. Make their space personal


Photo by imgix / Unsplash

When I got to my desk that first morning, there were a few pieces of (really nice!) Rebel swag, my business cards, a big box of chocolates (which I’d identified as my favorite candy on the fun facts sheet) and a beautiful bottle of red wine waiting for me (also, what I’d said was my drink of choice). It was a simple gesture but its thoughtfulness had a big impact.

5. Get their tech in order

A flatlay with a white notebook, keyboard, headphones and mouse on a pink surface
Photo by LUM3N / Unsplash

All the technology that usually takes days to organize was already set up, ready and working….laptop, monitor, keyboard, mouse, headphones…I was good to go right away. My colleagues were ready with the information I needed to access networks, get onto the wifi, and login to the office tools etc. This made learning new systems so much easier because all the frustrating time-consuming parts were already taken care of.

I have never before started a new job and felt so much a part of the team from the very first moment.  Every single employee I have interacted with has displayed the same passion that I saw during my interviews, passion that’s infectious.  It’s incredibly refreshing to work with people who truly care, and who are willing do whatever it takes to do things right.  Not only for our customers, but for each other.

And why do they care so much? Because they are without exception treated with respect, told they are valued, and most importantly, shown they are valued – right from their first day on the job.

Marylou Scott-Smith

Marylou Scott-Smith

Rebel's Customer Experience Manager. With 10+ years experience, Marylou loves making customer experiences memorable. She proudly collects speeding tickets & is 1 cat away from "crazy cat lady" status.

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