After weeks of interviews, your dream candidate has accepted your job offer. Congratulations! However, that’s only the start of the notice period: your candidate may not actually start for another three months, and this extended waiting period may pose a problem. How can you ensure that your hire-to-be remains engaged with the company, so that they don’t walk away a month before they start with you?

With 85% of executives rating employee engagement as a priority, don’t let your company fall behind. After all, great candidates can have multiple offers on the table up to six months after they start with you, so you can’t afford to let another company steal their attention before they’ve committed to joining yours. The danger may even come from another direction: their current employer could repair their relationship with their errant employee and tempt them back to the fold.

With all that in mind, investing time in keeping your candidate engaged during their notice period can really pay off. It doesn’t even have to take a lot of effort on your part: here’s how.

Regular Communication

66% of candidates want to hear more from their prospective employers, and this should start even before they walk in the door. It’s never too early to start building a strong, positive relationship with your new hires; indeed, the more effort you put into keeping in touch with them during the notice period, the more excited and enthusiastic they’ll be once they start work with you. Ask if there’s any information that you can provide about the company; send over a welcome pack in advance for them to look at and finalise details of their first day in advance so they have something to look forward to. They’ll appreciate the effort, and you’ll remain uppermost in their mind as they approach their start date.

Find out how the resignation went

Discovering how your new hire’s resignation has gone is the key to establishing how hard your new hire’s employer will fight to get them back. 50% of professionals will receive a counter-offer from their current place of work once they resign; will yours do the same? If their departure was due to issues with company culture, or not being given enough opportunities at work, then you probably don’t have anything to worry about- as long as you stress how you promote those qualities at your place of work. However, if the problem was down to pay, a counter offer might prove a real problem should their employer choose to up their salary. In that case, you might need to work harder to keep them- and prepare in advance, should they reopen negotiations.

Invite them to engage

It’s never too early to start integrating your new hire with the team. Why not invite them to a company social event so they can meet the people that they’ll be working with in a few months’ time? 79% of people quit their job because of a bad culture fit, so nip this in the bud from the start by making the effort and welcoming them.

Inviting your new hire to start socialising with their future work-mates: by starting to build good relationships, their first day at work will already seem less daunting. It’ll pave the way for a good onboarding experience, as if they already know about your company culture and about how departments and teams interact, they can be doubly certain that your firm is the right fit for them. Even if it’s something as simple as going for drinks after work on a Friday, they’ll doubtless appreciate the gesture.

Send a welcome email

After your newest employee accepts the job, send them a message, welcoming them to the team. Follow it up with an email shortly before they start work, saying again how excited you are to welcome them to the team, and whether there are any questions you can help with. It’s a quick and easy way of letting your new hire know that you’re thinking of them, and it’ll go a long way to creating a positive impression of you as employers that will hopefully sway their opinion should any other company try to poach them.

Start upskilling

There’s no better time to start nurturing your newest employee than before they even start. After all, 70% of people say that having great training and development opportunities would influence their decision to stay with a certain company, and this is a great chance to train them up without that impacting on their day-to-day responsibilities. Put them on a course to learn about the product that you’re selling, or invest in some sales training to engage them further; that way, they’ll have a goal to work towards, and will be able to hit the ground running.

Keep them in the loop

Make your new recruit feel like part of the company from day one by keeping them informed of what’s going on. Whether that’s by sending them the latest news from the business, announcing a new social event or sending them some company information to get them prepared, there’s no excuse for not building a rapport and making them feel included and invested even before they start at their new job.

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