Transitioning Employees from Probation to Confirmation


Recruitment begins the employee life cycle. The entire process of talent acquisition moulds and melts the talent for the organization. The genotype and the phenotype activities included during this phase are from the business, legal and psychological standpoint. Business requires piloting the talent hired in the organization’s environment to check the performance viability. Legal guidelines require the personal and organization’s rights, benefits and freedom to be maintained as per the statutory norms. The compatibility is checked in the psychological scope of activities. Here’s a question as raised by a member:

I work in an IT company of 15 staff members as HR personnel. This is a newly formed company and I am the only person looking after the HR dept. We have issued offer letters to the employees, we haven’t yet begun with the practice of issuing appointment letters. I am in the process to finalize an appointment letter format. I have searched few using research tab, but shall be glad if you can suggest an ideal one. Secondly, in the offer letter we have mentioned 3 months of probation period, most of the employees have crossed the probation period. I would like to know what are the formalities for confirming an employee. What would be the possible recommendations that I would have to suggest to my management regarding this matter?”

The transition from a probation to confirmation starts with administrative activities during the last few weeks of the probationary period. An organization may declare 3 months to 6 months as the probationary period. This duration is to check the viability of the talent within the company. Ideally the first 3 months are spent on training, though this training period can go upto 2 years in certain manufacturing companies. This period begins with the induction and orientation in to the organization’s culture and process. It is followed by classroom and on-the-job training. During these sessions the information about the company and how to deliver the job is shared. Fundamentally this phase is a measure of the employee’s learning curve. The feedback from superiors weighs the areas that require focus to be developed and the opportunity areas for the employee. This effort is duplicated on every frontier. Legally the benchmarks set to meet are fulfilled. Let’s take a look at the scheme of events followed during this transition:

Legally

  • The PF accounts are opened for the new hires whereas for the laterals the accounts are transferred from their former employers to the later.
  • The legal standards for the background of the employee are checked through reference check which may include educational, professional and legal details. In certain sectors such as Information Technology, complete background verification can include a check at the local police station for any criminal records.
  • Few organizations follow a strict rule for substance abuse. Consequently a medical check-up is completed before joining the organization.
  • The legal compliance would vary from sector-to-sector. The hiring of different spectrum of talents such as expats will include auditing the visa validity and work permits during the probationary period.

Organizationally

  • The training begins from the minute a new hire joins the organization. The first-hour induction followed by orientation and technical training grooms the talent. A close observation of the new hires helps the management team find an alignment of skills and competencies with the requirement.
  • Recruitment helps in identifying the alignment between the talent and the organization. Whereas during the probationary period, the gaps in the delivery for the employee, is essentially identified. These opportunity areas are trained and developed into strengths.
  • The classroom-training, maps the learning capabilities of the new hire. Whereas the on-the-job training, measures the implementations, adherence and improvisations implied by the new hire.
  • The ‘can-do’ to exceeding expectation emerges as the action item list for the new hire.
  • Scorecards are initially explained to the new hire and goal plans are drawn. The career path within the organization is marked.
  • Towards the last few weeks of the probation the assessment forms including the feedbacks and scores of the individual is complied and sent to the HR Team from the reporting managers.
  • There are organizations that may offer a bonus at the time of probation. Mostly, the bonus and hikes are paid during the annual salary increase post appraisal.
  • Though the retrials including the PF and Gratuity starts from day 1 of the employment, benefits such as Mediclaim may get initiated post confirmation. During probation these benefits are not allowed, even though the names are included for the Insurance list.
  • Once the feedback sheets are collected and complied, the HR Team coordinates a meeting between the first and second level leadership with the new employee, at the end of the probation to provide a feedback. In case the employee is not found worthy for confirmation, the appropriate feedback is provided. At times a Personal Improvement Program is initiated on the employee to bring the employee upto the speed. This has a detailed program to develop the core areas required to perform the job. The development is discussed and accepted.
  • In case the performance is found to meet the expectations the employee is confirmed and a goal path is discussed. Under these circumstances, areas for training, for further enhancement would be discussed. HR would thereafter issue the letter to the employee, confirming the services.

Personally

  • The individual needs to find the alignment between the job and self. The Culture needs to be inculcated but cannot be up-rooted if the individual was from a different one.
  • This time is invested to identify the work -group mentors and sponsors in the organization. In some organization, there are buddy programs and mentoring programs officially managed. Even in the absence of it, an individual effort drives such bonding.
  • The training and the apprentice phase prepares the employee mentally to think for the organization and deliver the level best.

The transition finally ends with the employee being declared billable and proceeds further with the employee life cycle.  The way this transition is managed impacts the productivity of the employee in the later stages.


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