The first several months of employment can greatly influence how new staff members feel about the College, how successful they will become at Franklin & Marshall, and whether they will remain employed with the College. It is important to help new staff members feel welcome; to help them understand the importance of their role within the department and the College; and to help them gain the skills and knowledge to perform effectively in their new position. Each new staff member should be treated as a "V.I.P." and given sufficient information, training, coaching, and feedback to help him/her succeed.

Department Orientation and Training

A newly hired staff member's immediate manager has primary responsibility for orienting, training, and helping the individual assimilate. Below are suggestions for orienting new members of the professional staff. The orientation process should be ongoing; the items listed below can be completed over the course of several months.

Help the new staff member feel welcome:

Prior to the individual’s first day on campus—

• Assure the new staff member will have an organized office or workspace, and necessary office equipment and office supplies. An organized office area, with necessary supplies, as of the first day of work is a sign that you have given time and thought to welcoming the individual.

• Assure the new staff member's computer, laptop, or other devices have all necessary software and applications; contact Information Technology Services, 358-4007, for assistance.

• Assure the individual will have all necessary office and building keys and fobs; complete the necessary form and submit to Facilities and Operations (contact Facilities and Operations, 358-3900, with questions).

• Arrange for voice mail service by contacting Facilities and Operations, 358-3900.

• Arrange for a College credit card if applicable; contact the Business Office, 358-4215.

• If purchase order access or access to budget statements will be necessary, contact the Business Office, 358-4210.

• Order business cards as applicable through Inside F&M.

• If the new hire will need access to academic information, contact the Registrar's Office, 358-4168.

• Contact the Finance Office, 291-3978, if the newly hired staff member will regularly use his/her personal cell phone for College business while off campus, and should receive a stipend per the College's policy.

• Update any department web pages, forms, or office publications that refer to office staff to include the new staff member.

• Schedule introductory meetings with colleagues with whom the new staff member will work closely. Determine which members of the faculty, staff, and/or students the new employee will need to rely on to be successful (for information, for resources, for cooperation on joint projects). Assure the new staff member has the opportunity to meet these colleagues.

• Give careful thought to the on-the-job training the new staff member will require, and develop a plan and schedule for providing this training.

• Call the new staff member prior to the first day of work to assure he/she knows how to get to the office and where to park; knows what time to arrive; to review his/her schedule for the first day; and to answer any questions.

(Note: Please promptly notify Human Resources if a new staff member is likely to interact with individuals under the age of 18 during the course of his/her College employment. A child abuse clearance, in addition to a standard background check, may be required.)

During the individual’s first several days on campus—

• Send an 'FPS' email message upon arrival of the new employee, introducing him/her to the Franklin & Marshall community. The email message should include the individual's job title, a brief description of the individual's prior work experience, his/her College phone extension, and any other relevant information (request the individual's permission before including personal information).

• Introduce the new staff member to each member of the office and to those in other departments with whom he/she will have frequent contact.

• Provide the new staff member with his/her email username and password. An email account will be established by Information Technology Services; the new employee's username and password will be sent through email to his/her supervisor once the account is established.

• Provide an organization chart or a list of employees within the department and their job titles.

• Acquaint the newly hired staff member with the office layout; use of voice mail, copiers, fax machine, and printers; the physical layout of the building; and location of restrooms, emergency exits, location of fire extinguishers, etc.

• As practical, help the new staff member feel welcome by taking him/her to lunch during the first week of employment and giving a small welcome gift such as a Franklin & Marshall T-shirt, hat, or mug.

• Arrange for a department member to take the newly hired staff member on a tour of campus. Or, contact the Admission Office, 358-4317, to arrange a campus tour.

• Provide the individual with time to attend his/her previously scheduled orientation meeting with Human Resources. Human Resources will explain the process for obtaining a parking sticker from Public Safety and a College ID card through Auxiliary Services.

• Contact Information Technology Services to arrange technology training applicable to new members of the campus community.

• Direct the staff member to view web-based training for completing and/or approving online time sheets. Provide the staff member with time to view online training for “mandated reporters” and online anti-harassment training (details will be provided to the new staff member during his/her orientation meeting with a Human Resources staff member).

• Coordinate any required safety training. Employees in some positions, including several in Athletics & Recreation, Appel Health Services, Public Safety, and Facilities and Operations, must complete OSHA-required safety training during their first week of employment. The Director, Environmental Health & Safety, 358-4153, is to be contacted to arrange such training.

• As applicable, give the newly hired staff member time to review your department and College web pages and written policies.

Review the mission and strategic objectives of the College:

• Review the College’s mission and strategic priorities. Contact the Office of College Communications as necessary for materials which reference the College’s strategic plans.

Explain the objectives and priorities of the department or office, and how they are aligned with the strategic objectives of the College:

• Review the department’s / office’s strategic objectives and key priorities.

• Explain how the department’s objectives are tied to the College’s objectives.

Explain the key objectives and priorities of the position the new staff member will fill, and why the work of the staff member will be important to achieving department goals:

• Explain why the new staff member’s position is important to the overall effectiveness of the department, and how the new employee's position fits within the overall mission of the College.

• Let the staff member know what his/her key objectives and priorities will be during the coming months.

• Set some initial performance goals and identify initial projects to be completed.

• Provide the new staff member with an up-to-date, accurate, written position description.

Review the College’s and your performance standards and expectations:

• Review the College's Standards of Conduct policy and Anti-Harassment policies found on the College Policies page.

• Review your performance-related expectations:

o   Discuss performance standards and inform the employee of your priorities (i.e., timely completion of assignments, accuracy, customer service, confidentiality of information, etc.). Set high standards for the new staff member.

o   Let the new employee know how you like to be kept informed of his/her activities (weekly meetings, written status reports, daily discussions, etc.).

o   Give the new employee some examples of decisions he/she will be expected to make independently, and those that will require your involvement.

o   Review any regular deadlines the new hire will be expected to meet.

• When initially delegating work assignments, don't assume the new staff member's standards will be the same as your standards; clearly explain what you expect the individual to do, the desired outcome, why the task is important, and the date by which the assignment is to be completed. Follow-up to assure the employee is on the right track.

Familiarize the new staff member with the routines and traditions of the department:

• Explain basic office routines and procedures:

o   Explain how routine office procedures are completed (completing purchase orders, completing expense reimbursement forms, ordering supplies, viewing budget statements, accessing information through databases, etc.).

o   Explain departmental procedures for calling in sick, taking meal breaks, arranging vacation, etc. Describe your expectations regarding attendance.

o   Review standard working hours.

o   For non-exempt personnel, explain how time sheets are to be completed and submitted.

o   Let the new staff member know how he/she can contact you after business hours if needed.

• Describe any department traditions in which the new staff member may want to participate (i.e., bringing in refreshments on one's birthday, lunch out on Fridays, etc.).

• Describe standards of dress in the office.

Provide sufficient on-the-job training so the new staff member has the knowledge he/she needs to be successful:

• Provide adequate on-the-job training:

o   Provide a clear explanation of specific tasks and responsibilities for which the employee will be held accountable.

o   Provide training in specific job tasks as necessary, or ask a reliable department member to provide training to the new staff member.

o   Make sure the new staff member has access to information and resources needed to do his/her job effectively (budget statements, reports, databases, job manuals, key contacts, phone numbers, web addresses, etc.).

• As applicable, encourage the new staff member to complete online professional development programs available through Human Resources. You can find a description of online courses and registration information in the Human Resources public eDisk folder, in ‘Professional Development’.

Assign a mentor:

• As practical, assign the new employee an informal "mentor" – an experienced colleague who will provide guidance during the new employee's first year at the College. The mentor should be willing to answer questions from the new staff member, to introduce the new staff member to colleagues and help him/her feel welcome, and to provide ongoing guidance to help the new staff member “fit in” at Franklin & Marshall. The mentor should be someone who will reinforce your high expectations of department members, is respected among colleagues, and will provide the new staff member with a positive impression of the College. The new staff member and mentor may choose to meet weekly or monthly to discuss, informally, any questions or concerns.

Human Resources will provide assistance assigning a mentor upon request.

Provide regular coaching and feedback:

• Try to determine what will motivate the new staff member. Ask the new staff member:

o   What he/she liked most and least about prior jobs.

o   What types of work tasks he/she finds energizing and enjoyable.

o   To describe the characteristics and style of his/her favorite prior manager, and least favorite prior manager.

• Provide frequent informal feedback to help assure the new staff member gets off to a productive start:

o   Document and then address any performance issues promptly and privately, to avoid misunderstandings and to establish clear expectations from the start. The longer you wait to address any performance issues, the more difficult it becomes to do so.

o   Provide regular positive feedback to reinforce effective job performance.

• Initially meet with the new staff member every week or two to discuss:

o   Any problems or issues that you've identified or that the employee has identified.

o   Additional training needs.

o   Anything that is hindering productivity (lack of information, not knowing who to contact for information, lack of resources, lack of proper equipment, etc.).

• Conduct an informal performance review after 2 or 3 months. View yourself as a coach whose objective is to help the staff member maximize his/her performance.

o   Review job performance during the previous 2 to 3 months.

o   Jointly set goals, based on overall department goals, for the next 6 months.

o   Discuss any development needs to assure goals are achieved.

o   You may want to ask the employee the following questions:

  1. Do you know what is expected of you?
  2. Do you feel you know how to do everything that is expected of you?
  3. Do you have the materials and equipment you need to complete your work?
  4. Do you receive the information you need to complete your work properly?
  5. Do you receive enough guidance and feedback regarding your work performance?
  6. In what areas would you like additional training
  7. What can I, as your supervisor, do better to assist you?


Human Resources Orientation


Benefits and Policy Orientation-- Human Resources will schedule and conduct a meeting for each new member of the faculty and professional staff. Newly hired employees must attend an orientation session during, or immediately prior to, their first day of work. Human Resources will provide a review of benefit plans and key College policies; arrange for the individual to receive his/her College ID card and parking permit; and complete required forms.

Verifying Employment Eligibility-- Federal law requires that an Employment Eligibility Form (I-9) be completed no later than the first day of employment. Human Resources will coordinate completion of this form. All new hires and rehires, including temporary employees, must be scheduled to meet with Human Resources prior to, or on, their first day of employment. Human Resources will schedule this meeting. Federal law prohibits Franklin & Marshall from allowing an individual to work or receive compensation until the I-9 form is properly completed.

Anti-harassment Training-- Human Resources requires that each new member of the faculty and professional staff complete an online anti-harassment training program. Human Resources coordinates this training.

Additional Information— Human Resources provides new members of the professional staff with general information about the College, including its mission and structure and resources available to employees. Human Resources sends those with supervisory responsibilities information relevant for new supervisory personnel.

Please click on this link for information about the informal Welcoming Program for newly hired members of the professional staff:  Welcoming Program.