Tips for onboarding new employees
Tuesday, March 19, 2019
For many churches, by the time you’re able to hire someone, you’re already feeling the strain of not having anyone in that role.
While it’s tempting to toss a mile-long to-do list at a new employee as soon as he arrives for his first day in the office, that’s not going to set him up to win long-term. Instead, it’s best to complete an organized on-boarding process for each new team member.
Here are several steps to consider when planning to get a new employee fully on board:
No. 1: Provide him/her with the church employee handbook
This document should include policies and procedures, dress code expectations, how to request time off, when to expect paychecks, etc. Take the time to review the highlights with a new employee, then ask him/her to read and sign it.
No. 2: Set up essential equipment and access
Most employees will need a workstation, computer, and phone. You’ll also need to provide them with access to the church’s network (or online electronic file storage such as Google Drive), the church management system (ChMS), and email. If you can have these items ready before their first day, that helps them be productive as soon as possible.
No. 3: Make introductions
Hopefully, this new employee received a tour of the church facility and met a few current employees during the interview process. Regardless, the first day or week on the job is a good time for a tour along with introducing her to the rest of the team.
Consider having a quick all-staff meeting on an employee’s first day to make introductions, share coffee and donuts, and get to know the team. Also, provide an organizational chart of all church staff and explain the functions of each department. Help new employees understand how each department or ministry area interacts.
Finally, introduce new employees to the volunteer leaders they’ll work with the most. This may need to happen over a few weeks as volunteers help during their scheduled services. Volunteers need to know the new staff member they’ll work with, and your new employee needs to know the volunteers in his area.
No. 4: Deal with financial details
Have new employees fill out a W-4 and your church’s form for direct deposit payments (if applicable), then get those to the church finance office. Also, train new employees on how to submit purchase requests for items they’ll need for their job.
No. 5: Provide training
If their role requires them to use the church management system, provide new employees with training on that tool. Other systems they may need training on could include volunteer scheduling, where to find and save electronic files, online facilities request forms, and more.
No. 6: Discuss goals and expectations
If you’re the new employee’s supervisor, you may have goals you want him/her to meet within the next few months. Discuss these goals and ask your new team member to set goals as well. Don’t forget to tell your new employee what you expect from him.
No. 7: Invite to meetings
Add new employees to any recurring all-staff meetings or regular meetings with their department. Also, consider setting up weekly one-on-one meetings to discuss priorities for the upcoming week, progress on goals, answer questions, and assign tasks.
While this list may seem fairly long, it’s imperative to invest the time now to help new team members succeed in their roles. You’ll see better results and will have more satisfied employees when you set them up for success from the start.
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