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How Often Should You Communicate With A New Hire?

Effective communication with new hires is key to successful onboarding and seamless integration of new employees into any organisation. It not only sets the stage for a smooth transition but also significantly influences a new hire’s perception of the company, impacting their engagement and commitment right from the start.

The benefits of effective communication extend beyond the initial days of employment; it plays a vital role in creating a sense of belonging, clarifying expectations, and building trust. This foundational communication sets a positive tone, enhancing employee satisfaction and, consequently, their retention.

Studies have shown that employees who experience comprehensive and supportive communication during their onboarding process are more likely to feel committed to their employer and motivated to contribute to the company’s success. Therefore, prioritising clear, consistent, and constructive communication with new hires is not just about filling a role but about nurturing a productive, engaged, and loyal workforce.

The Importance of Regular Communication

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Regular communication during the onboarding process is critical for setting clear expectations, providing essential support, and building meaningful relationships between new hires and the organisation. It serves as a bridge, connecting the new employee’s initial experience with their long-term engagement and productivity within the company.

Setting expectations through communication helps new hires understand their roles, and responsibilities, and how they contribute to the broader organisational goals. This clarity from the beginning reduces uncertainties and aligns their efforts with the company’s objectives. Further, providing continuous support through regular check-ins and feedback sessions helps new employees feel valued and supported. It encourages open dialogue, allowing for adjustments and improvements in their work processes and integration into the team.

From a legal standpoint, the UK mandates that employers must give new employees a written statement of employment or contract within two months of their start date. However, best practices extend beyond mere compliance; they involve creating a continuous and open line of communication that supports the new hire’s journey, ensuring they feel informed, supported, and integrated from day one.

Frequency of Communication: Guidelines and Best Practices

Pre-Start Date

Before a new hire’s first day, setting the right tone and expectations is crucial. Employers should initiate contact shortly after the job offer is accepted, providing information on what to expect on the first day, including start time, dress code, and any documents they need to bring. Sending a welcome package or email that introduces them to the company culture and team can also help in making them feel part of the team before they officially start. This period of pre-boarding is vital for easing any potential anxiety and building anticipation for the new role.

First Week

The first week is critical for setting the foundation of the new hire’s experience. Daily check-ins, whether through face-to-face meetings or virtual catch-ups, can help address any immediate questions or concerns. This is also the time to provide detailed guidance on their role and responsibilities, introduce them to their team members, and start integrating them into the company culture.

First Month

As the new hire becomes more accustomed to their role and the company, weekly meetings are beneficial for monitoring their progress, setting short-term goals, and providing constructive feedback. These interactions can help identify any areas where they need additional support or resources and reinforce their understanding of how their work contributes to the company’s objectives.

First Quarter

Moving into the first quarter, communication can become more spaced out, transitioning to bi-weekly or monthly check-ins. This phase focuses on ongoing support and development, discussing career paths, and setting longer-term goals. It’s also an opportunity to solicit feedback from the new hire on their onboarding experience, allowing for continuous improvement of the process.

Methods of Communication

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Choosing the right method of communication is crucial for effective interaction with new hires, as each method serves a specific purpose and suits different stages of the onboarding process. 

In-person meetings are invaluable during the initial stages, particularly in the first week, since a personal touch can significantly ease the new hire into their role. These meetings allow for detailed discussions, immediate feedback, and creating a personal connection, which is vital for building trust and rapport.

Emails serve as an excellent tool for pre-start date communication and formal announcements. They are useful for sending important documents, schedules, and comprehensive information that the new hire can refer back to as needed. Emails also document communication, ensuring both parties have a record of information exchanged.

Instant messaging platforms are ideal for quick, informal check-ins and day-to-day communication. They encourage new hires to ask questions as they arise and facilitate swift responses, for a sense of support and accessibility. 

HR systems and platforms play a pivotal role in streamlining the communication process, offering a centralised hub for documents, policies, and resources. These platforms can automate certain aspects of communication, such as sending out welcome emails or reminders for meetings, ensuring consistency and reducing the administrative burden on HR and managers. 

Our Final Thoughts

Maintaining regular communication with new hires is key to a successful onboarding experience, directly influencing their integration, engagement, and long-term success within the company. Adopting a structured approach to communication ensures that new hires feel supported, valued, and informed from their very first interaction with the organisation. Implementing a well-defined communication strategy is essential to building a positive work environment and building employee loyalty.