Onboarding: Roll Out the Welcome Mat

The interview process is complete, references have been confirmed, the qualified candidate has accepted the position. So what’s next? For SEI, the Onboarding Process kicks in to high gear!

Onboarding begins when the hiring manager contacts HR and provides the necessary information -“ new employee’s name, address, hire date, pay rate, hotel stay and relevant travel dates. From here, a detailed training schedule, customized to the position, is generated.

The hiring manager then sends a confirmation email to the newly hired employee welcoming him/her to the company and communicating pertinent facts along with notification that a new hire packet will be arriving from HR. Included in this package are:

-¢ Welcome Letter
-¢ What to Bring” Letter
-¢ “What to Expect on Your First Day” Letter from HR
-¢ Hotel Confirmations and any Applicable Travel Arrangements
-¢ Benefit Overview
-¢ Copy of Detailed Employment Agreement
-¢ Strengths Finder 2.0 Book (With a brief summary from SEI on completing the online Strengths Finder assessment)

SEI is taking the initiative in welcoming the new team member, along with preparing and informing him or her for that first week of employment. No guessing -“ the new employee will know exactly what to bring and what to anticipate.

Let the fun begin! The employee arrives at the corporate office for the first week of training. Upon arrival, the newbie is greeted not only by the friendly faces of our dispatch team, but also by a Welcome Aboard sign displayed with his/her name in our lobby.

From here, our newest team member is shown to a temporary cubicle that becomes his/her own personal work space while in Grand Rapids. A detailed schedule, a bag of company gifts and supplies await the employee in this cubicle. The employee takes a brief tour of the corporate office and is introduced to individuals in the various departments within the office.

Once the tour is completed, the employee begins his/her week of new hire training. The new employee meets with all departments which include HR, Purchasing, Accounting, Dispatch, Customer Service and IT. It is imperative that the new employee become acquainted with each department to understand the role each plays within our organization. Training with each department in Operations offers a new employee great insight on how all departments at the company operate together effectively to ensure the success of each position, as well as the success of SEI as a whole.

Throughout onboarding process, we share the company history. In addition, emphasis is placed on our company’s Vision and our Four Core Objectives. The employee learns how these impact and integrate to create The SEI Way culture.

The training in Grand Rapids is completed and now the work starts! The employee travels back to the home office. Their immediate manager and fellow team members welcome him/her and gradually introduce duties and policies. Office space is prepared with office supplies and any tools or materials required for the position. Lunch plans are scheduled for the week to provide opportunities to build team relationships, an intentional effort to keep the new employee feeling the same warm welcome that he/she received in Grand Rapids. The new hire spends the first week shadowing, as well as communicating directly with his/her manager.

Throughout our entire onboarding process, a new employee is encouraged to contact any SEI employee at anytime, with any questions at all. As an HR professional, I continually hear comments from new employees regarding how amazed they are with our process. They are stunned at how accommodating and genuine fellow employees are throughout their onboarding. From the time they walk in the door, to the time they end their week of training, to their entrance at their home office, employees clearly learn to understand how important their role is as a member of the SEI team.

Liz Rich, Human Resources, at Service Express Inc. in Grand Rapids, can be reached at [email protected]. Service Express is one of West Michigan’s 101 Best and Brightest Companies To Work For.

Previous articleDashboards Point Way to Performance
Next articleTake Advantage of Improving Capital Markets
Richard Blanchard
Rick is the Managing Editor of Corp! magazine. He has worked in reporting and editing roles at the Port Huron Times Herald, Lansing State Journal and The Detroit News, where he was most recently assistant business editor. A native of Michigan, Richard also worked in Washington state as a reporter, photographer and editor at the Anacortes American. He received a bachelor of arts from the University of Michigan and a master’s in accountancy from the University of Phoenix.