How To Re-Onboard New Hires

Re-Onboarding New Hires That Joined Remotely During The Pandemic

When facing a Global Pandemic became a reality in early 2020, most companies were forced to change their day-to-day operations, without much notice or time to plan. Current employees shifted from on-site work stations & community spaces, to remote desks in their homes. Zoom meetings replaced round-table discussions, and virtual happy hours served as a safe-place where people could communicate about their personal & professional struggles the unprecedented times brought on. 

As life begins to shift back to a pre-pandemic state, many companies are resuming their on-site employment, in many instances at 100% capacity.  Some employees are ready to return, while others remain hesitant. In the midst of the Pandemic, a sub-group of employees was inadvertently created; all of the new employees a company hired & on-boarded remotely. In the article below, we outline 6 ways to ensure your Pandemic new-hires feel confident, comfortable & excited to begin their new normal: working from your office or facility. 

Encourage A Bond

Many of us have probably been part of a new-hire or on-boarding process that includes group meetings, and presentations with other employees beginning at our organization around the same time as we are. Inevitably, a bond is created between several, if not all, of the individuals in these groups. Employees who were hired, and therefore on-boarded, during the Pandemic likely missed out on these cohesive events. 

As your new-hires from the Pandemic join your team in the office, we encourage you to host a luncheon, where the employees can interact with one another and experience the on-boarding process, retroactively. Structured team-building activities or icebreaker events are great ways to ensure new-hires from all levels of your organization can interact. 

Welcome The Employees

When the employees who joined your organization during the Pandemic arrive at your office, even though their employment is no longer new, this will be their first day on the job.  Welcoming them with a special note or gift at their desk is a small gesture that will carry a big sentiment. 

Organize A Tour 

It is very important that your new employees feel comfortable in their new workspace. That includes being aware of all entrance and exit points, conference rooms, available snacks, restrooms and security teams, as well as where each department sits. Organizing a tour of the office for small to medium sized groups is a great way to orient your new employees to their surroundings, and provide them with another opportunity to bond with their new-hire colleagues. 

Check In

Once everyone is back in the office, being high-touch with your employees that began during the Pandemic is not a bad idea. Although some employees may have been on your team for 3, 6, or even 12 months when your office resumes on-site employment, remember that this is their first time in the office. Under normal circumstances, your Manager would likely treat you to a one-on-one lunch during your first week, and spend more time together reviewing processes and procedures, than they do with more seasoned employees. We encourage you to conduct these activities, as if the new-hire was brand new that week.

Assign A Buddy

Pairing your new employees with a more tenured employee on their first day provides them a safe place to ask questions that help them feel comfortable in their new work environment. Working closely with a long-term employee allows your new-hire the space & opportunity to ask questions about facilities, as well as the culture of their new team. Assigning the employee a secondary buddy from another department or team is a great way to introduce them to other aspects of the business that they likely were not exposed to when working remotely. 

Encourage Team Building & Socialization

While your new hires will be joining the office environment for the first time, long-term employees will be returning to your offices for the first time in several months, or in some cases over a year! Creating opportunities for people to socialize & interact with one another will encourage your employees to reconnect with each other. Examples could include an outdoor picnic, department-specific open house events, lunch-n-learns, or happy hours. We recommend keeping each of these events voluntary, as everyone is adjusting to returning to the office in their own way, and at their own pace. 

Employees who joined a new organization, or team, during the Pandemic were faced with a very unique challenge during an unprecedented time. The opportunities we outline above, should help you to re-onboard your remote new-hires more effectively. Good luck!