30-60-90 Day Plan… Good Stuff or More ‘Check the Box Garbage’ for New Hires?
The day has finally arrived. After requesting, fighting for during the budget process, and enduring the first quarter hiring freeze, your new hire is coming in on Monday. What have you done to prepare your newest employee to be successful at their position? Arraigned for a place to sit, new computer, monitor, office supplies, etc. Going to take them to lunch on their first day and give them a tour? Maybe have a quick team meeting and introduce the new employee to the rest of the group? What about day two?
Day two should have been planned out and been put in place before your new hire ever made it to the parking lot. Most companies require written and approved job descriptions (JD) for both hourly and salary employees. You know what position you gained approval for, so get the appropriate JD out to review and start working on their 30-60-90 Day Plan before they arrive.
If you work in a regulated industry (like Medical Devices) there is a requirement for documented training in many areas of the business that must be read and understood at a minimum. Others companies add to this training for safety (OSHA), mandatory Corporate Integrity Agreements, Sunshine Act training, corporate policies, etc. If you let the new employees pick and choose the training to take first, in addition to many Standard Operating Procedures (SOP) and Work Instructions (WI), it could delay their ability to start working in their jobs because of the order they chose. The FDA requires all employees to be properly trained before they begin working in production. When they sign their names to show what they worked on, they should have already been trained and tested to ensure they are doing the process correctly. If they design or create processes for products, they must be familiar with the company’s Quality Manual System for new products and/or changing processes, validation requirements, document change controls, etc.
The 30-60-90 Day Plan is for you, the supervisor, to list your expectations and needs for training, product knowledge, computer systems/software your business uses, special areas of concern to learn about, monitor, or anything else their particular jobs would entail. It should have been designed so that at the end of the 90- day period, both you and your new employees feel good about the progress and all the mandatory/needed training has been completed.
Companies are now making this format required to help new employees be more successful and not flounder by trying to read their supervisors’ minds, guess what is most important, and find the right procedures to train on whey they see a dozen or more SOP and WI binders staring at them in the document control area.
How a supervisor can take this wonderful tool and turn it into garbage, but ‘check the box’ with Human Resources, is to wait for the new employees to come on board and assign the 30-60-90 Day Plan to them because they are ‘too busy’. Since you waited months for the persons to arrive, and you are as much responsible for their success as they are, I would find this dumping of your responsibilities completely unacceptable. Your time management skills, planning, and preparation thoughts were not properly engaged. Day two for the new employees should have been a slam dunk. First impressions of and from the new employees can be lasting. Why kill their euphoria the first week?
If you made the plan and would like to negotiate due dates with the new employees, have at it. As long as the critical items get completed during the 90-day period, the plan is doing what it was designed to do. But leaving any new employees to wander about on their own, or assigning them to someone that is not a lead level to ensure they are getting proper support and good information as they go through each week of the plan, can also hamper their efforts.
Employees are assets, therefore valuable. They are the only asset at the site that will appreciate in value if properly trained and motivated. Don’t mess it up!