How to help a new employee settle quickly into their new office

handsome-businessmanStarting a new job can be nerve-wracking – not just for the new employee, but often for the employer as well.

A new member of staff can change the dynamics of an office culture; get it wrong and they can turn a harmonious team into a disgruntled one, get it right and they can become an asset to the team and company as a whole.

As an employer getting through the recruitment process can be daunting enough. Nowadays there are many forms of recruitment, from in-house HR departments to recruitment software, there are even companies that specialise in providing outsourced recruitment services.

However, unlike the recruitment process, there are no companies available to help new workers settle into their office environment. Instead it comes down to you, as the employer, to ensure recruits are provided with all the resources they need to become accepted and productive members of the team.

office photo 2Here are some tips that will help new employees to settle into the office quickly and easily.

Prep the team
Make sure your staff, especially those who will be working directly with the new employee, know when they are starting and basic information about them. It is far easier for a new person to settle into their working environment if they don’t have to keep repeating their name and basic career history. Instead they will be able to use this time to get to know their colleagues, the work they will be doing and the office environment.

Personal mentor
Appointing a personal mentor is a great way of helping someone settle into a department. Normally given to a team member, this role will provide the new person with a go-to person in case they have any questions and someone to guide them through basic day-to-day tasks. It will also provide them with a person to show them the office routine and help them assimilate into the team.

However much experience they have, when joining a new company employees will always need training. Whatever form of training you prefer, ensure that it is relevant, accessible and comprehensive and that it enables the person to have all the knowledge and tools they need to do the job. Also expect new staff to make mistakes – however competent a person is, starting a new job can be overwhelming so they are bound to make a few mistakes before settling properly into their jobs.  

Be informative
Provide information and lots of it. Remember new people won’t know basic stuff like where the toilets are, what time lunches are taken, where to go for office stationery. It is also a good idea to not just tell them about office-relevant information, but the surrounding area as well. Let them know the best places to go for a coffee and sandwich at lunchtime, where the nearest ATM machine is, where to park or, if they use public transport, bus and train times.

Encourage socialising
Socialising is an important part of the modern working environment. It helps to build strong teams, creates a more relaxed working environment, and makes workers want to come into the office in the morning. Socialising is also key in helping new employees settle in. People are always more relaxed away from the office, so even if it is just encouraging staff to go out for lunch together, it can help build a strong and inclusive team dynamic.

If after-work social events are part of your office culture, ensure new employees are given plenty of warning about these, as many workers will have outside commitments such as partners and children they need to take into consideration in order to attend these events.

Written by Derin Clark, a writer, editor and blogger.

Things To Do Before Taking a New Job

new jobThe search has come to end, you’ve finally been offered a new job, after months of hunting, interviews and waiting for call-backs. Getting that job offer rightly feels like a cause for celebration, a personal success, whether you take it or not. Herein likes the key point; you may be tempted to accept right away, but it’s often more sensible to take a step back and to make sure it’s the right fit for you.

The main things you should confirm are the terms of the offer. Points such as weekly hours, how often you will be paid and annual leave should all be checked against what was agreed verbally. Think practically about the location and how you’ll commute there, if relevant.  It’s also a good idea to research salary figures in your profession and make sure you’re getting a fair deal.

Approach the job description from a different angle than when you were emphasizing your abilities in the application stages. Now, you need to really ask yourself why you want the new job. If you’re looking for career fulfillment and/or progression, does the new job allow you to play to your strengths? Consider whether the day-to-day tasks will keep you challenged and happy in the long-term.

People are usually one of the last things you consider when going for a job, but a pleasant working environment and job satisfaction greatly depends on being around those you get along with. Try to meet as many people on the team as you can before deciding. This will also help to determine the overall ethos of the company and whether it’s what you’re looking for. Will the organisation and its employees be supportive and share a similar work ethic to you?

The final decision is a big one; this is something which will occupy the majority of your day, five days out of seven. Take some time to think it over, discuss with peers or family members and research the company’s history and finances via web tools like Companies House. It’s worth putting in the same amount of time and effort for the new job offer as you did for the interview itself.

Photo by jipstick

Is it worth getting a part time job while you study?

students, part time job while you studyThe question of student finance is being raised more and more often in the media these days: many people are starting to think that it just isn’t worth the money to head off to college or university, and even those who do go are constantly aware of the considerable expense that comes with it. Many students are looking for new ways to finance themselves and pay their way through their studies, and this is completely understandable; for some people a student loan just isn’t enough, and many people don’t get enough of a grant to pay all their bills along with their tuition.

Some universities (such as the University of Manchester in the UK, along with plenty in the US and Canada too) are very proud of the fact that young people have a part time job while they study – in fact the University of Manchester boasts that around half of their students work part time.

If you do decide to go and find some part time work, it is not recommended that you work more than 15 hours per week – many academic authorities such as suggest that 15 hours a week could be the absolute maximum you can comfortably work before it becomes detrimental to your studies.

While the extra money does not go amiss by any stretch of the imagination, a survey of Canadian students found that 77% believe working part time in any capacity will impact their grades. A survey of another group of Canadian students conducted by the Royal Bank of Canada also found that 74% of them do not believe they budget effectively – this could be the answer to their problems.

Effective budgeting is the easiest way to ensure that students don’t run into financial problems while at university; however we all know that this is easier said than done. Whether you live in the US, the UK or Canada, it pays in the long run to ensure that you’re giving your studies your full, undivided attention.

Photo by: UNCUCS

Help!… Jerry is burning the bridge

burn bridge, employee burn bridge, burning bridges, burn bridges

While not directly related to personal finance, it can have big implications on your job search should you burn the bridges behind you.  Let’s face it if you are looking for work and there are burnt bridges out there it can make it a little more difficult and that my friend will affect your finances…badabing!  Let me share with you a little story of something that happened at work this past week.

 Jerry was a happy employee of my company (1),his boss left the company to go work elsewhere.  His boss contacts Jerry and recruits him to work there with him.  Jerry obliges and accepts the job to work with his new boss at company (2).  Jerry turns in his resignation and a competitor entered our market and Jerry is approached by company (3).  Jerry decides after going back and forth with wage increases between company (2) & (3), that company (3) is the way to go.  Jerry burned 2 bridges in this scenario.

Jerry burned his bridge at my company by leaving to go work with his former boss whom had recruited him and he also burned the bridge at his bosses company.  Jerry leveraged companies 2 and 3 to increase his rate of pay for his own benefit.  Jerry was pretty selfish.

I think that if Jerry had any kind of ethics when he put in his resignation to our company and notified company 2 that he had accepted the job, he should have upheld that allegiance and gone to work there.  For that I cannot respect him as a professional in the industry that we work.  Pretty stupid for Jerry considering the census for the area is less than 100,000. 

I understand why he did it he wanted to go with a company who he saw was moving into the area and he would get to develop that market.  I also appreciate the fact that he wanted to make the most money for his family. 

Well I have news for him; he is a middle aged man and likely may change jobs again.  This area is small and it could very well impact his future employment in this industry.  So with that, the best of luck to you Jerry!!!!

You never want to burn a bridge that you don’t have to, sure we all have changed jobs at one time or another but you want to go out on your former employer’s good graces.  Chances are that you will cross paths with your former employer at some point. 

Mutual respect of yourself and your employer should be taught in the grade school system.  This knowledge is essential to personal relationships.  We can apply this same principle to friends, family, and any other group or organization you are part of.  This will make parting much easier and can only benefit you in the future. 

I don’t even know why something like this needed to be posted, but sometimes the obvious needs to be pointed out, eh Jerry?  Don’t be Jerry!  Part with your dignity and your head high, because you never know when you may need to call upon your former employer or colleague.

Do you know any Jerry’s?  Have you ever burned a bridge?  Ever had to go back after you burnt a bridge to try and salvage it?  Go ahead, you can share!!

PHOTO BY: Idiom Savant

Side Hustle: The Real Mobile Hot Spot

hold antenna, sxsw, mba, ham radio

The bulk of us that read and blog have regular full time jobs.  Many of us do this for fun or as a side hustle trying to make some passive income.  I have been an avid reader for a few years and have seen some interesting side hustles over at Budgets Are Sexy side hustle series.  This one that I am about to tell you about takes the cake. 

 A New York marketing firm, Bartle Bogle Hegarty’s Labs (BBH), created a stir at the South by Southwest Music Conference and Festival (SXSW) recently.  The festival held in Austin, Texas is geared towards bringing the eclectic music of Austin to the rest of the world.  Now that we are in the technology age where we feel the need to be constantly connected to the internet, so in comes the homeless hotspot.     

 You guessed it, it is a homeless individual walking around with a device that transmits wireless data signals where users can subscribe to and pay for to have access to the internet.  The homeless individuals are compensated for their services of carrying around the devices that transmit the signals.  Take a look at the homeless hotspot website for more information on some of the homeless individuals. 

According to they claim that the “volunteers are guaranteed to make at least $50/day for 6 hour day.”  Not bad considering they were otherwise homeless. BBH labs would like to roll this out on a broader scale if accepted. 

What do you think, is society exploiting the homeless or are we giving them an opportunity they may not have otherwise had?  Anyone go to this festival?  Anyone subscribe to the internet service provided by one of these individuals. 

PHOTO BY: Whiskeygonebad

Unemployment down ! the economy heading way, hopefully!

Wow did you see those employment numbers on this weekly economy?  That is fantastic hopefully for the economy we can start seeing the economy on the rebound. It seems like it has been depressed way too long.  Well if any of you out there are reading this and you were one of the ones in this statistic and got a job, Congratulations.  If you do not have one these are good strong signs that you may have a job out there on the horizon.  So keep up the due diligence and your head up and good things will happen and make sure your resume is up to date.

The strong job numbers are a prediction that companies are starting to have confidence in their financial picture that they can take on some additional risk and hire staff.  CEO’s are still timid in their hiring practices because of the economic uncertainty.   I have fortunate enough to have not been laid off but I do know family and friends who were not as lucky.  It is very difficult to see a loved one lose their job due to forces that are beyond their control.

There is a plethora of economic indicators out there that you can give a sense of where the economy is going or the condition of the economy.  This one was recently released and is published monthly by the bureau of labor statistics, I found the information for this article here on CNN Money.

Ever wonder where they got their numbers from?  The numbers come from a sample of the population.  A very small sample, but if you know anything about statistics you can ascertain that if the sample size is large enough you can get a good estimate that would approximate what the population would do.  So every month 60,000 households are surveyed by over 2,000 trained bureau employees on the make up (ie: ages, gender, occupation) of their household.  The sample is large enough to assume that 90 out of 100 times the sample result would be the same as if we had polled the entire population.  Check out the Bureau of Labor Statistics if you want to find out all the nitty gritty on the calculation of the numbers.

So, while this is not a 100% accurate picture of the population, it would be nearly impossible to survey the entire population every month, which is why the census is taken every 10 years.

What data do you look at?  Do you even look at this data?