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Induction: Getting the first few days right

Induction is an essential part of on boarding your new recruits and familiarising them with your organisation. Getting the induction process right can help you get new employees up to speed and productive as quickly as possible.

As an employer, your staff are your most important asset. Induction gives you the chance to welcome new employees and build on their positive attitude and enthusiasm for their new job. It's an opportunity to familiarise new members of staff with your organisation and to introduce them to their immediate colleagues and other members of the wider workforce. It's also an ideal opportunity to familiarise new recruits with your organisation's policies on areas such as health and safety, equality and discrimination. Having a comprehensive, structured induction process has been shown to play a big part in improving long-term staff retention.

Induction doesn't have to be a formal process. However, it does need to properly planned and consistently delivered to ensure that all new employees are treated fairly and receive the same information. Having an induction check list can ensure that all areas are covered.  The process needs to impart all the information that new employees need in a way that doesn't overwhelm them with information, or distract them from getting to grips with their job. Employing a 'buddy' system for a new employee's first week can help answer practical questions and deal with any problems in an informal way.

It is worth bearing in mind that certain new employees may have special needs in terms of induction - for example, school leavers starting their first job, people with a disability, people returning to work after a break, older employees or employees from overseas.

Acas has produced an advisory booklet on recruitment and induction for employers and provides training to equip managers, supervisors and HR professionals with the necessary skills to deal with recruitment, selection and induction and to create more productive workplace environments.

Visit the Acas training and business solutions section for more information.

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