Resourcing | UK organisations suffering from 'non-starter syndrome'

UK organisations suffering from 'non-starter syndrome'

When starting a new job, new recruits are often excited to embark on a shining career with their fresh employer. This new starter enthusiasm and eagerness often sticks for a little while after their initial induction until the employee has properly found their feet within their new role.

However, recent research by Cezanne HR has revealed that two thirds (63%) of HR professionals have had new recruits quit before they have even resumed their job.

The survey – which was conducted last month and polled 250 senior HR practitioners across the UK – found that many employers are falling vulnerable to ‘non-starter syndrome’. This is when new starters merely don’t show up for work on their first day.

Furthermore, the research found that just one in five employees stay in a job for less than a year, which highlights the severe struggles that HR departments now face when it comes to recruiting and retaining talent.

Previous Cezanne HR research found that 31% of non-starters cited poor communication and a lack of verbal follow-ups by the organisation as partially responsible for the new starters no-show.

Subsequently, this led to 24% saying that they would have appreciated more communication before starting the job, while 51% admitted to quitting their jobs within the first six months because their new role didn’t meet pre-meditated expectations.

And the study’s findings closely aligned with separate research from Fosway Group, indicating a desperate need to augment onboarding, with 48% of organisations looking to spend more on their onboarding process.

75% cited using emails, phones (66%) and posting (25%) to communicate when onboarding, while a staggering 87% of respondents admitted a severe lack of digitised tools or web-based portals to enhance their onboarding processes.

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Sue Lingard, Director at Cezanne HR, said that the focus has fallen on improving candidate experience using digital recruitment methods, though she has cited online recruitment as important “in the race to acquire talent”.

She explained: “Many companies have not, until recently, lent the same attention to onboarding processes.

“With a new generation entering the workplace and a fast-growing gig economy, the need to optimise onboarding is now a point of competitive difference.

"Organisations that don’t deliver a consumer-like digital experience for their new staff will struggle to keep up in the war for talent.”

So, how can HR keep new recruits enthusiastic and deter non-starter syndrome? share these five tips:

  • Communication is key – Make sure that new recruits receive clear communication from the time that they are offered the job to the second that they set foot in the office on the first day. Not only will this create a working rapport earlier on, new recruits are likely to feel welcomed into their new working environment.

  • Get the paperwork done and dusted early – The sooner new recruits fill out the appropriate paperwork, the better. Tackling this online is a far easier and quicker way to process the paperwork before the employee starts.

  • Make everyone aware of the new starter – HR should be communicating with other departments so that team members can prepare some welcoming words for their introduction.

  • Ensure that their workspace is ready – Check with the new starters line manager that everything is in place for their arrival. Otherwise, new recruits may feel disheartened that the office isn’t prepared for them.

  • Prepare an induction checklist – Make sure new starters have a checklist that outlines all of the important information that they need to know and the people that they will need to acquaint themselves with.

What are your tips for welcoming new starters? Let us know in the comments below…

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