First Day Follies

More Than Half of Workers Have Experienced Onboarding Issues When Starting a New Job

TORONTO, Aug. 26, 2015 /CNW/ - It's important for new employees to make a good first impression, but many companies don't realize they also need to put their best foot forward, recent research from staffing firm OfficeTeam suggests. More than half (56 per cent) of workers interviewed said they've experienced a mishap when starting a new job. For one-third (33 per cent) of those surveyed, their computer, phone or security access wasn't properly set up when they arrived. Another 24 per cent said they didn't receive an overview of the company and its policies.

Despite these first-day troubles, however, most human resources (HR) managers give their companies high marks when it comes to bringing new employees into the fold: Nearly three-quarters (71 per cent) of those polled felt their organization's onboarding process is very effective and 28 per cent stated it's somewhat effective. 

Workers were asked, "Which of the following, if any, have you experienced when starting a new job?" Their responses*:

Technology (i.e., computer, phone, security access) wasn't properly set up


Didn't receive an overview of the company and policies


Necessary supplies were not provided


Didn't get introduced to coworkers


Didn't receive a tour of the office


I haven't experienced any of these mishaps when starting a new job


*Multiple responses permitted.

HR managers were asked, "In your opinion, how effective is your company's onboarding process for new employees?" Their responses:

Very effective


Somewhat effective


Not very effective




"Many companies focus so much on information-sharing during an onboarding process that they may overlook basic practical needs, such as making sure that a workstation is up and running for the employee," said Robert Hosking, executive director of OfficeTeam. "Every touchpoint during those first days adds to the new staff member's perception of the organization, so the more you can do to ensure everything runs smoothly, the more positive that impression will be."

OfficeTeam offers five tips for getting employees up to speed when starting a new job: 

  1. Set up shop. Stock the desk with essential supplies and equipment, such as pens, notebooks, a computer and phone. Confirm network, voice mail and email functionality. Coordinate building security access, if necessary.
  2. Get acquainted. Send a welcome email to team members and alert the receptionist so everyone's aware. On the first day, introduce the employee to coworkers around the office. Consider scheduling a lunch for the new hire to get to know colleagues. Assigning the worker a buddy or mentor can help ease his or her transition.
  3. Review the essentials. Provide a tour of the building. Schedule an orientation to review the employee handbook, company history and policies. Allow time to complete any required HR paperwork.
  4. Focus on the job at hand. Set expectations early on by discussing the position's goals and responsibilities. Organize training sessions on office equipment, software and procedures necessary for the role.
  5. Keep it going. It can take a few months to fully onboard a worker. During that time, regularly check in with the employee and encourage him or her to ask questions.


About the Research
The surveys of workers and HR managers were developed by OfficeTeam. They were conducted by an independent research firm and include responses from more than 400 Canadian workers 18 years or older and employed in office environments, and 100 HR managers at Canadian companies with 20 or more employees.

About OfficeTeam
OfficeTeam, a Robert Half company, is the nation's leading staffing service specializing in the temporary placement of highly skilled office and administrative support professionals. The company has more than 300 locations worldwide. For more information, including online job search services, visit Follow @RobertHalf_CAN on Twitter and the OfficeTeam Take Note® blog, for additional workplace advice and hiring trends.

SOURCE OfficeTeam

Image with caption: "Onboarding Mishaps (CNW Group/OfficeTeam)". Image available at:

For further information: Naz Araghian, 416.865.2140,

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