Editor’s note: Chris Travell is director, customer success automotive, Europe, at research firm MaritzCX, U.K. Scott Sparks is an automotive sales consultant. He is located in Detroit. This is an edited version of a post that originally appeared under the title, “The importance of Onboarding in the Automotive Industry: Part 2.” 

In the last blog on the employee experience in the automotive industry we looked at the strategic importance and economic benefit of an effective onboarding process and focused on what should happen prior to the employee’s start date.

In this post, we’ll look at what happens when employees arrive on their first day. As before, we are focusing on the automotive industry, but the principles equally apply to other industries.

Once a new employee’s first day has arrived, you want to make it special and the best way to do that is to create an exceptional first impression. Ensure your receptionist is aware of the start date so the new employee is welcomed appropriately.

Consider creating a welcome kit that contains numerous positive first impression opportunities, such as branded accessories. Have a welcome letter from the dealer principal, or even from the OEM president, prepared and left at the new employee’s desk.

Items found in a welcome kit are often used daily and a new hire will feel an immediate attachment, so much so that they often continue to use them for years to come.

Provide desktop resources – desktop as in the physical desk space. Include print materials such as dealership newsletters, upcoming community involvement notices, employee recognition programs – anything that conveys positive dealership activity will help to make a new employee feel good about their decision to join the team.

From an online standpoint, consider adding a dedicated welcome page to your intranet or LMS. Creating a specific welcome starting point will be engagi...