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LeadingEdition: E-Newsletter for Purdue University Supervisors

Weaving new staff into the fold


Most departments and organizations do not realize their fullest potential when introducing new staff to the organization. First impressions of the department are crucial to maintaining and retaining our staff, and this begins when they are first welcomed into our areas. Departments need to provide an outreach to new staff so that they feel like an essential part of the organization from the very first day of employment.

New staff members are often introduced to their respective areas, given their new set of responsibilities, and then turned loose to process and integrate on their own. New staff may feel isolated by the organization they have joined because of their small circle of colleagues, or sometimes they don�t even fully realize how their job helps the organization succeed.

Many organizations have �on-boarding� processes defined and in place to assist new staff with the daunting prospect of not only settling into their role, but understanding their contribution. Listed below are some key activities usually associated with on-boarding.

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Providing staff with the department�s mission, vision, and culture, and demonstrating how the new staff member contributes in their individual roles to the organization�s mission.

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Educating new staff members with a cross-functional view of not only their role, but how different departments within the organization operate and what how they might interact.

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Facilitate the process by assigning mentors to new staff members. Mentors are key to explaining the unspoken rules within a department and communicating the culture to new staff members.

The benefits to on-boarding new employees are seen in better retention rates of staff and an accelerated learning curve for those new employees. Plus, staff who feel they are important to the success of the organization (and not just another cog in the wheel) are generally happier and much more productive.

For assistance in putting together an on-boarding program for your new staff, contact Employee Relations at 49-41679.

- Steven Putt
Employee Relations

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LeadingEdition is an electronic newsletter for Purdue University supervisors.  It is produced and distributed by Purdue University Human Resources four times annually.  If you have questions, comments or suggestions relating to the newsletter, please call 49-41679 or email us.  Thank you.