How to make new hires feel comfortable

Starting a new job can be stressful for even the most experienced workers, and it's especially nerve-wracking for entry-level employees. The first

Starting a new job can be stressful for even the most experienced workers, and it's especially nerve-wracking for entry-level employees. The first few days in a new office often set the tone for a new hire's time at the company, so it's in your best interest to welcome employees with open arms.

However, rolling out the welcome wagon involves more than giving new hires a company handbook and showing them where the bathrooms are. Personal touches are key when it comes to making employees feel welcome. Here are some tips that employers can use to make new hires feel comfortable from day one.

"Encourage current employees to introduce themselves to newcomers."

Let the office know they're coming
Managers should make a point to inform other employees of a new employee's start date. This will give workers a heads-up on the new face in the office and encourage them to stop by and introduce themselves. It's a small step that can go a long way toward making new employees feel welcome and comfortable.

Plan an interactive first day
Most companies start off new employees with a tour of the office and introductions to co-workers. After that, newcomers are often shipped off to training and human resource meetings, where they plod through paperwork and listen to company policies.

However, this is usually boring and doesn't give hires a feel for the company culture. Instead, try to plan a variety of activities for an employee's first day. This can include a team meeting or lunch, a chance to jump into a new project or an in-depth tour of the facilities with a peer mentor.

Help them personalize their workspace
No one likes sitting in a bland cubicle or desk, so why not give new hires a small welcome gift to spruce up their space? Studies have shown that plants can improve productivity and mood in the workplace, so a little greenery might be warranted. Some other options are a company T-shirt, a silly coffee mug or a card signed by current employees. Not only will this gesture help hires personalize their space, but it will also make them feel like a valued part of the team.

A welcoming workspace will help employees relax.

Check in before workers leave
Chances are new hires will have a few questions after their first day, whether it's how to work the coffee machine, where to pick up lunch or what a project entails. However, it can be intimidating for newcomers to approach you when you're busy, so they may keep their questions to themselves.

You can make new employees feel comfortable and give them a chance to ask those little questions by checking in with them before everyone leaves for the day. Managers should take five or 10 minutes to chat with new workers once a week to ensure the individual is adjusting well. When you're communicating consistently with hires, you can iron out any issues before they become big problems.

This content brought to you by the Marketing Team at Beacon Hill Staffing Group.