Lee Biggins, founder and managing director CV-Library
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You only have five days to impress a new recruit: here’s how to make them stay

16th May 2016
Lee Biggins, founder and managing director CV-Library
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In today’s buoyant job market, candidates have more choice than ever before when it comes to their career paths.

With more emphasis increasingly being placed on tactics to attract the most talented recruits, such as an emphasis on employer branding and the most appealing job offers, it might come as a surprise to hear that over two-fifths of UK employees (40.6%) starting a new job decide whether the role is right for them within the first week.

The research comes from CV-Library, as it surveyed over 4,000 of the nation’s professionals. So, what does this latest revelation mean for HR professionals?

Essentially, once a new recruit has been brought on board, the HR team has just five days to  make sure they stay.

Ensure current employees are happy

We’re all aware that first impressions speak volumes, but when you’re working through the hiring and on-boarding process, these impressions last well beyond the interview stage.

In fact, the most common reason that new employees make for the door and never look back is down to an unfriendly working environment; almost two-thirds (62.5%) of workers admitted that they would up and leave if they started a new job and discovered that their colleagues were unfriendly or unhappy working for the company.

It’s therefore important that HR professionals work to make sure that all employees across the company are happy; while it’s important to make new recruits feel comfortable and settled within their new roles, it’s just as important, if not more so, that current workers within the company are content too.

Staff unhappiness and low morale can seriously affect how a business runs and how its employees perform, and workers who are new to the team will often pick up on this environment. So taking steps to ensure that your workforce is happy, whether they’re a long-serving employee or a new hire is vital; it could cost the business in the long run if you don’t.

Offer a clear route for career progression

Then there’s the fact that employees today place huge value on their career and their opportunity for progression; there’s nothing worse than being stuck in a rut, and it seems that over two-fifths of workers agree.

Starting a new job and discovering a lack of room for professional growth was ranked as the second most popular reason for quitting a new job, as 42.1% confessed that they would leave a role that didn’t offer career progression; suggesting that HR professionals should sit down with new members of staff, and devise goals to work toward.

It could be that some employees have unrealistic expectations for their career growth, so taking the time to discuss a career path and long-term objectives with new employees could help to solve any problems before they arise.

Make sure you’re paying a fair wage

And perhaps unsurprisingly, almost a fifth (18.2%) of workers indicated that being underpaid would cause them to look elsewhere; while more money doesn’t necessarily equal happier staff, it’s often a good place to start.

Although decisions surrounding pay and salaries may not lie solely within the HR department, it’s important that HR professionals listen to employee concerns surrounding their wages, should they feel that they’re being underpaid.

Of course, if an employee is working above and beyond their pay scale, it’s important to address this issue sooner rather than later; you don’t want to lose talented staff, to another company simply because it’s offering more money. But for the most part, simply talking to employees about their concerns, and implementing an appraisal process which gives workers the opportunity to discuss a pay rise, is key.

Starting a new job is often a daunting process, and there are a variety of factors to be considered when settling a new recruit into the team. And more often than not, the first week of a new job is make or break; HR professionals really do need to make every effort to stop their new recruits from leaving.

The reality is that a new hire may have had other job opportunities on the table when they accepted the job, and the last thing that a business needs is for them to change their mind after just one week and move elsewhere.

But with a strong approach from HR and support from colleagues across the company, new recruits can settle into their role, and become a valuable asset to the company.

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