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Induction, also known as orientation, is the process of introducing new employees to the business, the working environment, management and other employees.

Although an induction is generally intended for new employees, it can also be useful for existing employees who move into another position or another area within your business to give them all the information they need.

Benefits of induction

There are two key benefits your business can gain from good induction processes:

  • reduction in staff turnover – reducing the likelihood that new staff will leave your business shortly after commencing employment; and
  • increased productivity – a proper induction will allow new employees to be productive more quickly by giving them all the information they need upfront to get up and running in their new position.

New employees come from all walks of life and may have differing needs when it comes to feeling comfortable in the workplace during those first few months.

The particular needs of certain groups of employees are discussed below.

School leavers typically have limited work experience and tend to be unfamiliar with the demands and habits of a workplace. They may need more support, greater detail regarding their responsibilities and obligations and may need a greater level of supervision for the first few months. It may also be the first time they have worked according to particular policies and procedures and they may need to spend extra time on the relevance of these in the workplace.

Graduates include university graduates and those graduating from higher education institutions. Graduates are likely to be enthusiastic about entering the workforce and eager to apply their theoretical knowledge in a practical manner. To take advantage of this enthusiasm, explain how the theory may be applied to practice.

You may find it best to involve graduates in projects where their expertise can be used and where they can feel they have made a contribution to your business. Encouraging them to share their up-to-date theories and strategies will make the graduate feel like a valued member of your business.

Much like school leavers, this group may need additional support, particularly if they have had limited work experience.

Career changers/mature-aged workersmay have substantial work experience so their induction should focus on filling their skill and knowledge gaps. Being over-supervised may have a detrimental effect on members of this group. The induction period can be a good time for you to identify skills and information this person has that can help your business to become more productive and competitive.

Australian and State government legislation prohibits discrimination against people with disabilities, ethnic/social minorities, people with caring responsibilities, and those from a non-English speaking background. Reasonable adjustments may need to be made to accommodate newly employed people from these groups. Think ahead about any modifications to the physical environment, rosters, work practices and processes that may be necessary. It is important that these types of things are considered before the new employee starts work.

Existing employees commencing new roles are often forgotten when it comes to induction.

An induction for an existing employee can be a valuable process and will increase the likelihood of this person feeling comfortable in his or her new role. This is particularly true for employees moving to new areas of your business and those who have been promoted.

We can to help you plan how you will induct new staff and what to include in inductions and develop the systems and processes. We have an online solution that you may find beneficial to your business, call us today for more information.

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