Why do I need Probation?
Congratulations! Adding a new team member to your business is an exciting time! It might be your first employee; it might be an additional employee or a replacement employee. Whatever the reason for them joining the team, it’s always an exciting adventure.
Now obviously prior to their appointment, you’ve done due diligence throughout the interview process. Something about them has appealed to you otherwise you wouldn’t have employed them in the first place. (Please never hire for the sake of hiring – just trust us on this one!)
Now the fun starts.
Like anything new, it can take time to build and establish the relationship. Both parties need to be able to find their feet and settle into a routine. This can take and it should be noted that it does take time and just because of this, it doesn’t mean it’s all doom and gloom. Everyone has a different learning style and approaches things differently. If we have learnt anything after the last two years, it is that adaptability and flexibility are the new norm.
As part of the integration into the business, we encourage you to conduct probation reviews at one, three and five months. These checkpoints enable you to monitor and discuss the Employee’s progression into the business. It also acts as a little mini performance review as they are going. Informally these check ins can help determine whether or not the Employee will pass their probation period.
A probation period is often set out in the Employment contract and we advocate for a probation period of 6 months. It aligns with some of the actions and protections that Employees and Employers have within the Fair Work Act.
As such, if we go back to the probation period, this time is as much of an evaluation of both sides of the relationship. Whilst you might be evaluating the Employee, during this time the Employee is also evaluating whether or not they wish to continue their employment with you. It’s a two-way street. During this period, usually both parties can decide to end employment by giving one weeks’ notice (this is dependent on the contract).
We know that sometimes this transition can be tricky and there might be a few hiccups along the way, but that is expected. Someone who is learning is expected to make mistakes, how you handle this situation will determine the success and outcome of the relationship.
If you are unsure on how to manage a new employee, then let us help you. Let’s put together a strategy to manage this – firstname.lastname@example.org