Welcoming a new starter into your business is an exciting yet busy time for everyone involved.
From system access and desk set-ups to email addresses and training plans (and everything in between), there are a LOT of puzzle pieces which need to be in place ahead of your new employee’s first day. To help you make a great first impression and take some of your stress away, we’ve put together a guide with our top tips below that will get both you and your new starter off to a flying start:
Getting the Right Equipment:
One of the most important things your new employee is going to need on their first day is the equipment they’ll be working on. It may seem really simple and obvious – for most, it’s ‘just’ a laptop/desktop with a keyboard and mouse – but there are a couple of key considerations you need to make before you can tick this off your mental list. Namely, where will you be getting those from?
If you’re ordering the equipment in as new, have you put the wheels in motion to make sure it not only arrives in time, but can also be properly set up with everything your new starter will need ahead of their first day? Have you also checked the specification of the hardware to make sure it’s adequate to run all the applications the employee will be using?
If you’re reusing existing equipment already in the business, has the hardware been checked over by your IT team to make sure it’s fully functional with no unwanted company or personal data still remaining on it?
Configuring Software and Procuring Licenses:
No matter whether your business is using Microsoft Office 365 or Google Workspace, your new starter is going to need a license in order to use the software they’ll be working on. Depending on their job role, they may also need additional software such as Design Packages, Customer Relationship Databases and Accounts software, too.
If you aren’t re-using the licenses from a previous employee in the same role, you’re going to need to obtain some new ones via your IT provider. Some of these licenses can take time to procure, so make sure you’ve got the ball rolling as soon as possible to avoid any delays.
Although ensuring your new starter has their own company email address is a given, one thing we often see people forget is the configuration of a company branded email signature for that account ahead of time. This may seem like a tiny detail, but it’s a finishing touch that immediately and visually welcomes your new employee to your team so it’s definitely worth remembering!
Another detail that can make a big impact is the proper set-up of their telephone extension. If you have an internal directory, make sure you update it to include their new extension and, if you are reusing the extension of a previous employee, make sure to rename it and clear out any voicemail history from the old user to avoid any confusion.
If you plan to have your new starter working from home either permanently or on an ad-hoc basis, their equipment will need to be configured appropriately to ensure all the relevant remote access technologies such as VPN and Remote Desktop are working seamlessly. By testing everything’s up and running ahead of time, you’ll be able to resolve any teething issues before they become big problems that require a frustrated round-trip back to the office to be fixed.
Files and Folders Access:
If your business has shared company folders, make sure all the relevant permissions have been granted to your new user so that they can access the files and folders they will need in their role, while at the same time being denied access to any confidential information they should not be able to see or edit.
Outline Your IT Processes:
Your new starter is going to have a lot of information to take in during their first week, so to avoid overloading them too much you may find it best to prepare a PDF or physical document which outlines some key guidelines when it comes to using company devices. The main areas you may wish to cover include:
- Your company’s approach to the personal use of devices, internet browsing or social media
- The software you expect them to be using in their role
- Instructions on how to use your company’s phone system, whether that be a traditional hard-line or VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) system
- Your company’s working from home policy
Unfortunately, cyber attacks are becoming more and more commonplace in the business world, and they pose a serious risk to both your company and your clients. That is why it’s more important than ever to ensure your staff are trained and kept up to date on how to identify and combat these threats should your company be targeted.
If you haven’t got one already, creating a robust and comprehensive training programme for any new starters will be a great line of defence that will not only save you time and money, but also prevent reputational damage or worse should you fall victim to an attack.
It’s not only new starters who could benefit, either; putting a plan in place to regularly refresh the memories of existing staff as well will ensure everyone is always up to date and stop anyone becoming too complacent.
Trust, but Verify:
If you’ve taken all the steps above, your new starter should be feeling pretty confident and comfortable, equipped with all the tools they need for success. However, even though they should be feeling that way, it’s best not to assume that to be the case – for your sake and for theirs. So, before little niggles have a chance to become IT nightmares, make sure your new starter knows:
- Where to find any process guides or training materials they might need.
- Who their first line of support is – eg. direct to their manager, an in-house IT team, or an external IT provider
- How to contact that first line of support – ie. an appropriate email address or telephone number, or a support ticket system
- Any restrictions or limitations to that support, such as coverage only being available between certain hours or for set incident types (eg. password resets might be dealt with internally while network outages fall under an external provider’s jurisdiction).
We hope the above tips have given you the confidence and tools you need to make a great first impression for any new starters that join your business going forward, but if you’d like a handy reminder to refer back to, we’ve created a free infographic for you to download here.
Should you be in need of some more advice, or simply wish to have someone else take the load off your shoulders so you can focus on other things, why not get in touch with one of our friendly team by clicking here? We can support you and your employees on a one-off basis or as part of an ongoing support contract, tailored to your business’s needs.