Top Topics to Cover at New Employee Orientation


If your company is hiring new employees, you need to host a high-quality orientation session before their first day on the job. Make sure to include these critical topics so that your new employees or coworkers know what to expect.

Equipment Operations

Depending on your industry, your new hires may need to know how to operate complex machinery such as fuel air separation systems. If you work in sales or human services, your workplace machinery is probably just your landline phone system, your desktops, and a copier. In both cases, you must teach your new workers how to operate all the machines they’ll come into contact with. This training saves time as they start working, and it also prevents machine breakdowns caused by user errors.

Payroll Regulations

Every company handles payroll differently. Some businesses use online time-tracking services, others rely on self-reported timesheets, and still more don’t need time-tracking systems because their employees are salaried. At your new hire orientation, explain your system thoroughly. Note any time-tracking apps that your employees need to download and review your overtime policy. Conclude this session by reminding your new workers about the importance of being honest and avoiding time theft.

Discrimination and Sexual Harassment

Race- and sex-based discrimination and sexual harassment are illegal in the United States, but they are still common in many workplaces. Review your policy for reporting both behaviors and connect your company’s policies to the applicable laws. For example, as you tell your employees who to contact if they have been harassed, mention how your regulations are based on Title IX of the Civil Rights Act. Also, go over penalties for perpetrating acts of discrimination or sexual harassment, such as suspension, fines, and termination.

Dress Code

Your workplace’s dress code reflects your business’s culture and the kind of work you do. For instance, if you manufacture filters, it’s hard for your employees to oversee production in suits. At the same time, if you sell insurance, your clients may not take you seriously if you wear shorts and a t-shirt. Clearly explain what you expect of your new hires’ attire, and demonstrate it during your presentation. Make sure that your language is sensitive to all cultures and that your code is not biased against one gender.

When you’re designing your orientation, make sure to cover these essential topics thoroughly. Don’t forget to leave time at the end of each session for questions.

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