Preparation is paramount prior to day 1

  • 21-12-16
  • David Landau

When a candidate accepts a new job, they are typically excited and raring to start their journey. Harnessing this enthusiasm and ensuring it is maintained is an easy thing to do, yet it’s something we see so many companies get wrong. All too many employers fail to meet the expectations of new employees, with them winding up being disengaged and dissatisfied or worse leaving the business after a short period of time. With this in mind, here are four easy steps to ensure you onboard your new hire in the right way.


To help ensure your new hire’s transition into your business is smooth, keep in frequent contact with them before they start. Check-in prior to their commencement date to reiterate how excited you are for them to start, or to catch up with them over a coffee to cover practical points like dress code, hours and what they need to bring with them on day one. Informally managing their expectations, so they know exactly what’s coming in their first few days, should ensure a smooth transition.


If your team happen to be going out together for food or drinks, inviting your new hire to come along and get acquainted before they start is a great way to ensure they feel included. On day one, once your new hire has met their team and started work, provide them with a visual seating plan with the names of their co-workers to help them remember who’s who. This avoids awkward moments and prevents your new hire from missing out on early opportunities to build relationships. It can also be beneficial to introduce your employee to people in other areas of the company that they’ll frequently work with but aren’t in their immediate team. Doing so can provide them with a bigger picture of your business and how it operates. Not only can this result in enabling your employee to be more efficient in their new role, but it will also make them feel more welcome as part of the business.


Whilst your new Accountant may be competent in their accounting functions and processes, they might not be entirely familiar with your industry or the specific quirks of your company. To help orientate them to what your business does, allow your employee to slowly get exposed to other areas of the business whilst being careful not to overwhelm them. Introducing them to customer-facing sales teams or senior management can allow your new hire to acquire useful points of contact within the business. Offering this exposure over time whilst ensuring your new hire is aware of any helpful resources can aid in their professional development by upskilling them.


To ensure you and your new starter get off on the right foot, it’s just as important for you to be prepared as it is for the employee. Get the basics right and ensure that their desk and computer are set up along with passwords, and they have access to everything they need. Striving to make your new starter’s first-day fun and engaging will also help to make a strong impression. Piling boring and bland paperwork on to them straight away will ensure their day is memorable for all the wrong reasons. Whilst some paperwork will be unavoidable, limit the likelihood of ‘switching off’ your new hire by leaving all the non-essential documentation to later in the week. Instead, make sure your employee has the chance to socialise and get to know everyone in their team, whilst getting accustomed to where they’re going to be working. It’s also a great idea to personalise your new hire’s first day by doing something unexpected, like giving them a gift. Small, thoughtful ideas like customised coffee mugs or branded t-shirts and other company collateral, are a great way to do that little bit extra to make your new starter feel welcome.

To aid this process in the future consider creating a new hire checklist that can be used each time you onboard a new employee.


Taking a proactive and thoughtful approach to how you prepare your newly hired employee can come with several great benefits; enhancing the productivity of your new hire from day one, and increasing retention rates across the business whilst providing a strong boost to your internal culture.

If you would like more information on employee onboarding best practices or are interested in connecting with Sydney’s accounting talent, don’t hesitate to speak with one of our expert Consultants today.

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To make sure your staff stick around after their warm welcome, review these techniques: 7 Low-Cost Yet Effective Staff Retention Ideas.