Your selection process is over, you’ve officially chosen your new hire, and they’ve accepted your job offer. So what happens next?
No matter how seasoned or senior a hire may be, they’re likely to be grappling with one or all of these emotions on day one. And that’s exactly why understanding how to write an introduction letter for a new employee that’s warm and welcoming is a key component of a successful onboarding process.
After all, while it’s certainly critical to have the technical components of your ‘welcome aboard’ process down pat (think getting the right paperwork filled out and making an intro to the company’s mission), it’s equally important to have a strategy in place to reassure the newbie that they’re valued from the get-go and that they’ve made the right decision by joining your team.
This is where small gestures, like a good intro letter, come in. Not to mention, knowing how to write an introduction letter for a new employee can be an easy way to immediately start to make someone feel appreciated and part of the company culture.
Follow the six steps below to find out all you need know to put together your own message.
How to Write an Introduction Letter for a New Employee
1. Think Company Culture.
First impressions count, and from minute one, you want your new hire to get to know and think positively about your company culture. That means that you should make sure your introduction letter aligns with ‘the vibe’ at your organization, both in terms of medium and tone. For example, if you’re a tight-knit, laidback start-up, you may want to do a meet-and-greet with the new employee over coffee before sitting down to write a fun intro. Alternatively, if you’re a sprawling corporate, you’ll likely need to write an introduction letter for a new employee and then disseminate it across formal channels, like a company-wide newsletter or a centralized intranet platform.
2. Include the Nuts and Bolts
Before you sit down to write an introduction letter for a new employee, make a list of all of the information you need to include. In the very least, your message should mention:
• Your new hire’s full name
• Your new hire’s job Title • Your new hire’s contact information
• To whom your new hire will be reporting, as well as what team/department they’ve joined
• A brief description of your new hire’s job duties, especially if it’s a new position in the organization
• A call-to-action for others in the organization to introduce themselves to the new employee
3. Add Some Color
After you’ve checked the basics off your list, feel free to think about what other information you could add to the letter to further personalize it, better have it reflect the company culture, and more aptly bring your new employee to life. For instance, you may want to consider including:
• Background on the new hire’s past work experience
• Information about the new hire’s education
• The new hire’s personal hobbies
• The new hire’s favorite activities
• A key achievement the new hire has made
What’s more, you may want to take it one step further and use the letter as an opportunity to truly get the newbie integrated into your company culture by asking them to tell one joke in the letter, answer a funny question (e.g. What three people would you invite to dinner?), or reveal something significant about their goals and ambitions (e.g. How would you like to change the world?).
4. Keep the Warm Welcome Top of Mind
As mentioned, the tone of your letter should absolutely be warm and welcoming. You want to convey the fact that you’re excited to have the new hire on board and that you already consider them a valuable contributor. This will shape your colleagues’ perceptions about them as well as make the new team member feel comfortable and appreciated from the start.
5. Don’t Forget the Headshot
You know the old saying, pictures speak louder than words, and accordingly, asking your new hire for a photo can be a quick and easy way to allow them to represent themselves to your colleagues the way they want. On a more functional level, sending an image with your letter will allow other employees to easily recognize and thereby greet the new employee.
6. Ask the New Hire to Review
Getting letter approval from your recent hire is essential, and more likely, you’ll need their input to create the message anyway. Making this a more collaborative process also lays the groundwork for the respectful, open relationship you hope to have with the team member.
7. Make the Letter Part of a Broader Welcome Strategy
As any great human resources leader will tell you, onboarding is not a single event, but rather an ongoing effort to integrate new hires into your company culture and resource them to become effective, productive contributors. In simpler terms, you’re far from done once you write an introduction letter to a new employee. You should have a plan in place to continue to make them feel welcome and to get to know your culture and their colleagues. That could mean organizing a team lunch on the first day, creating a small welcome card and delivering a tiny gift (e.g. a gift certificate for a coffee), pairing the newbie up with a more seasoned ‘buddy’ or mentor, or simply planning a sound and structured training schedule.