Every year, we onboard about 200 people, which is no easy feat. That’s why I helped create what is now Mailchimp’s onboarding program. As a result, gone are the days when a new hire would be dropped off at their desk and left to their own accord.
When the program started, I was the only new-hire wrangler. Now I manage a team of Employee Integrations Associates that ensure each new person feels welcomed—and gets all of the resources they need.
When we first created the program, a few obvious things needed to be addressed, like reading handbooks and electing benefits. Through our Chimpanion Program, we paired new hires with cultural ambassadors so they didn’t have to eat lunch alone their first week. We also started having department representatives explain how their teams contribute to Mailchimp.
My team is always looking for ways to improve, though. In the last few years, we’ve spent countless hours sifting through new hire feedback and having conversations to figure out what could be done better. We found that teams were amped to become even more involved in the new hire process.
There are a few ways that new hires get to know their manager and team. Before they even start, each person fills out a survey of their favorite snacks, colors, hobbies, etc., and their team uses this information to decorate their desks. It’s amazing to see a grown person’s face light up at the sight of their desk covered in pizza wrapping and streamers. Managers also write welcoming notes on postcards to put into their new hire’s swag bags. And once a new coworker starts, their manager and team take them out to lunch.