At the City of Concord, we place a very high value on providing exceptional customer service. We also recognize the importance of providing our employees with the skills and resources necessary for meeting that standard of excellence, beginning with their very first day of employment.
An orientation for new employees has been developed to facilitate their transition into the organization, and ensure that they have a clear understanding of our Mission, Vision and Values. The Employee Orientation Program provides a foundation upon which new employees can build their skills and contribute to our efforts of providing responsive and effective local government services.
The program is comprised of two parts, consisting of a two day Introduction to the Organization, followed by departmental orientation and training facilitated by a Departmental Sponsor. Through our Employee Orientation Program, our employees benefit from the value that we place on developing their skills and assisting their transition from their very first day of employment. In addition, the program helps to foster a supportive, team-oriented work environment within the organization. Most importantly, the program rapidly develops a new employee's ability to respond effectively to the needs and inquiries of the community we serve.
The Employee Orientation Program is an important first step in developing a workforce that is committed to providing seamless service, maximizing resources and setting the standard for excellence.
Part I: Introduction To The Organization
The employee's first two days of employment are spent within a formal orientation process, designed to cover key elements of every City department, and other issues of importance that will assist the employee in their transition into the organization. The orientations are normally held on Mondays to facilitate scheduling of departmental tours. A welcome letter and itinerary are also provided to each new employee prior to their start dates. Elements of the orientation are as follows:
- Meet assigned sponsor
- Overview of the City of Concord's customer service philosophy, culture, Mission, Vision and Values; review of organizational structure and organizational training opportunities
- Telephone and computer systems overview/training
- Benefits review and completion of new hire paperwork
- Initial Standardized Emergency Management (SEMS) training
- Lunch with sponsor (hosted by the City) at Diablo Creek Golf Course (the City of Concord's municipal golf course)
- Tour facilities and Departments:
- Human Resources Department
- City Manager/Council/City Attorney offices - tour of Council Chambers
- Finance and Information Technology Departments
- Community & Economic Development Department
- Police Department
- Printing Services. Sponsor provides information on continued orientation (Day 2 and beyond)
- Continue departmental tours with sponsor:
- Public Works & Engineering Department (Includes tour of Administration, Facilities Maintenance, Fleet Management, Infrastructure Maintenance, Parks Services and Transportation)Parks & Recreation Department (Includes tour of selected City parks.)
- Parks & Recreation Department (Includes tour of selected City parks)
- Computer training lab at the Senior Center to initiate Employee Benefits Enrollment, overview of Employee/Manager Self Service including network, timecard and PBB.
Part II: Sponsorship Component
The sponsorship component is a key element of the Employee Orientation Program. Each department assigns at least one "veteran" employee to serve as the department's sponsor. The sponsors are then provided with training designed to familiarize them with the functions of the entire organization, and available internal resources.
Specific roles, responsibilities and qualifications for sponsors are as follows:
Each new employee is assigned to a departmental sponsor with whom they will work closely over a four-month period to facilitate the employee's transition into the organization. The sponsor is experienced in City policies and procedures, has the ability to identify appropriate contacts within the organization (i.e. provide referrals on a variety of issues), and is also familiar with the City's customer service and Mission, Vision and Values goals. The team of sponsors from throughout the organization will also periodically evaluate and modify the program to ensure that it best meets the orientation needs of new employees.
The role of the sponsor differs from that of the supervisor. The supervisor provides direct on-the-job training and direction for the employee's specific work and tasks, while the sponsor's role is to facilitate the new employee's entry into the organization and department, as well as provide general information as needed.
Departmental Sponsor Specific Responsibilities
- Schedule and coordinate the employee's Introduction to the Organization (first two days)
- Introduce new employee to other department members
- Review key organization and departmental policies and procedures
- Highlight the "big picture" - how their department fits into the City organization
- Conduct City Organization Tour - Introduce key sponsors from other departments. Those sponsors in turn provide departmental overviews and tours
- Maintain ongoing contact with new employee, providing information and support as needed
- Provide information regarding training opportunities, as well as participation opportunities on City committees
- Review and discuss the importance of applying customer service and Mission, Vision, Values goals to the employee's daily work and responsibilities
- Selected by department
- 3 +/- years experience within City organization
- Strong interpersonal and communication skills
- Positive and enthusiastic attitude
- Clear understanding of City's Mission, Vision and Values
- Willing to make required time commitment
- Key reference materials, to be updated periodically
- Key organization-wide policies and procedures
- Sponsor responsibilities/Effective Communication
- Quarterly meetings to review and evaluate the effectiveness of the Employee Orientation Program and update sponsor informational materials
- Annual planning luncheon to set goals for the next year
Evaluating the Program's Effectiveness
The objective of the Employee Orientation Program is to facilitate the new employee's transition into the organization, and enable the employee to quickly become a productive, contributing member of our team. To ensure that the program is meeting our goals, we have established an evaluation process to provide data for measuring the effectiveness of the program. The evaluation process consists of the following:
Part I: Survey instrument for employee evaluation of the Introduction to the Organization segment of the Employee Orientation Program. The survey is completed at the end of day 2 of the orientation.
Part II: Survey instrument for employee evaluation of the sponsorship component, departmental training and New Employee Meeting. This evaluation is conducted after the employee has attained six months service.
In addition, an annual review is undertaken by Senior Management to analyze the program's overall effectiveness and impact.
For additional information on the Employee Orientation Program, and other training programs developed by the City of Concord, please contact our Human Resources Department at (925) 671-3308.