New-Employee Orientations Fail Effectiveness

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<p><strong>St. Petersburg, Fla. &mdash; May 2</strong><br />According to a recent survey, most companies don&rsquo;t spend a lot of time orienting new recruits, and their top strategy for &ldquo;wowing&rdquo; them is to hand out items branded with the company logo. </p><p>The survey, conducted by the Institute for Corporate Productivity (i4cp &ndash; formerly HRI), also found that although the vast majority of companies have new-employee orientation (NEO) programs, more than one-fifth of them don&rsquo;t bother to track their effectiveness.<br /><br />&ldquo;Considering the current and future war on talent, a new employee&rsquo;s first days are critical when it comes to creating a positive first impression that fosters loyalty,&rdquo; said Jay Jamrog, i4cp senior vice president of research. &ldquo;Companies are also missing the boat to not only impress a new employee but also to build upon the strengths and weaknesses of the employee, which were undoubtedly collected in the selection and assessment process. </p><p>&quot;The future of talent management systems promises to record the competencies uncovered in the selection process, allowing for the early application of learning programs in cases where skill gaps have been uncovered. This is definitely something organizations should keep in mind when planning their NEO programs.&rdquo;<br /><br />The survey found that 86 percent of the responding companies have a program to orient new employees. For about half (46 percent), the process is done in a day or less, with another 26 percent wrapping the orientation up in two to three days. </p><p>As far as offering new employees a &ldquo;wow&rdquo; factor, more than half (54 percent) rely on company-related items (pens, shirts, pads, binders, folders, etc.), and 12 percent do nothing.<br /><br />&ldquo;Getting a new T-shirt is nice, but it seems like there are probably better ways of making an impact on new recruits,&rdquo; Jamrog said. &ldquo;The company should use the opportunity to have new employees communicate and build relationships with leaders in the organization right out of the gate. NEOs also offer a unique opportunity to gather a new recruit&rsquo;s impressions of the marketplace and the company.&rdquo;<br /><br />In other survey findings, when it comes to measuring the effectiveness of their orientation program, 47 percent of respondents use employee surveys, 20 percent measure first-year retention and 17 percent look at performance ratings. </p><p>Somewhat surprisingly, 22 percent of polled companies do not track the effectiveness of their NEO programs.<br /><br />Most companies (81 percent) turn to the human resources department to administer the NEO programs, but 23 percent involve multiple departments, and 21 percetn include the department to which the new employee will report.<br /><br />The New Employee Orientation Practitioner Consensus Survey was conducted by i4cp in conjunction with in April 2007 and included responses from 597 organizations.</p>

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