Once you’ve found your perfect new hire through TNL jobs the hard work’s over, right?
Wrong! The way you incorporate a new employee into your Early Years setting could set the tone for their working life, so you want to ensure a great welcome!
It sounds really obvious, but make sure all your staff are aware of when the new hire is starting. Depending on the size of your organisation, it’s possible some people haven’t got all the information and the last thing you want is for someone’s first day to begin with a puzzled look. Get your staff (and the children!) excited for a new person to arrive so everyone starts off on the right foot.
As well as excitement, you want preparation when a new person starts. Ask them to start later than usual on their first day so you have time to sort yourself out and can give them your full attention. Additionally, a ‘new starter’ pack is easy to prepare and shows you’ve considered their needs. As well as making sure any documentation needed is ready for their arrival, an envelope with a print-out of WIFI and computer passwords, a notebook, pens and anything else they may need for their first day gives the personal touch and will make your new employee feel valued from the start.
Once your new person is in, you’ll most likely give them a tour of the nursery, but make sure to incorporate introductions past the standard ‘This is X’ ‘Hello, X’. Make sure the children are introduced as well as the adults and allow some time for interaction, so they are familiar with the new name and face.
After the initial first day and welcome, make sure your new starter has end-of-week and -month reviews booked in. This ensures it’s already on their minds that they have a designated time to bring up any issues or questions that arose during the week, if not able to raise immediately. It is always essential to make employees feel supported, but never more than in the induction period.
At the end of the first week it’s a good idea to arrange some kind of celebration (only low-key – not necessarily bringing out the champagne glasses!). We all have a tendency to say ‘we should go for a drink/coffee’ but often let other priorities get on top of us and don’t arrange anything, so it’s down to you to make sure it happens! It could be a get-together after work, an evening Zoom quiz, or even just a more relaxed time at the end of the day with the children involved in the festivities. Some down time, or time with the team outside of the nursery setting, will help to solidify those work relationships.
To sum up, putting the extra effort into your new hire’s first day and week will pay dividends in terms of their loyalty, work ethic and feeling part of the team, so make sure they get a great welcome!