Having an ongoing conversation with your employees – especially new hires – will help ensure their job satisfaction. The 90-day review is a perfect time to get insight. Here is a list of questions to ask new employees. (Pro tip: Add these to your 90-day review template so it’s standard to ask them and you record their answers.)
Are you content with your current responsibilities?
This will let you see if your employee has the desire to grow in their role or is feeling overwhelmed already.
Do you understand the expectations of your job?
While job duties should have been cleared up within the first week or so, performance expectations may still be blurry, especially if the employee is assigned long-term projects. Take the time to make expectations known.
How would you rate yourself at doing the job?
This will allow you to talk about how you’d rate the employee. Know what you want to say here so the employee’s opinion doesn’t sway you.
What would help you improve your performance?
There may be an inexpensive tool that would speed up work. See if you can make that happen.
Is there any additional training you feel you need right now?
Give them the opportunity to tell you there’s a part of the job they’re unclear on.
Who has been most helpful during the learning process?
Sure, this may be information you want to know so you better understand other members of your team, but it can also be helpful for partnering or mentoring purposes.
Do you feel you could benefit from a mentor?
Consider someone that doesn’t regularly work with the employee and could bring to light some of their better qualities.
What part of the job do you like best? Least?
It will lend insight into which direction your employee wants to head in the future.
How is this role different than what you thought?
Hopefully they answer that it’s not. But this will let you in on any doubts the employee may have – without coming out and asking directly.
How does your compensation align to the duties?
The 90-day review is often a time to revisit compensation. Sometimes, upon hiring, the employee knows salary will be considered after three months. You’ll probably already know if a raise is in order but see what the employee has to say.
What improvements can we make to how we operate?
If you ask this, be ready to have an open mind. But, remember, you hired this person for a reason. With enough time to get a grip on how the team runs but not long enough to get caught in a rut, they may point out inefficiencies. Take them seriously.
What do we do better than our competitors? How can we improve to compete?
Depending on if the employee has experience in the industry or exposure to the market, they may have an eye-opening opinion here.
How can I be a better manager for you?
The idea here is that you show your openness to discuss your own performance.
Do you want more or less direction in your work?
Autonomy is key to satisfaction at work. Make sure you’re giving them the right dose.
Do you feel your ideas are being heard?
Hopefully, the employee knows they’re being encouraged to speak up; if not, this will drive it home. And gauge if they feel part of the team.
Do you feel like you fit in with the team?
This may help you get a handle on which coworkers are friendliest – and most important to retention of new hires.
Have you had any uncomfortable situations or conflicts you want to discuss?
Hopefully, it’s been drama-free thus far. Anything the employee mentions is worth investigating further.
Can you see a future at this company?
Maybe the employee will bring up other departments or positions in management – or even starting a specialty committee. Look for excitement and passion in their answer.
What future training would you be interested in?
Show the employee you take their personal development seriously and want to know where their heart lies.
Do you feel like you’re “in the know?”
Transparency is important to making employees secure in their job. Make sure you and your company are doing a good job of keeping communication lines open.
Are you happy you made the decision to work here?
It’s rare that a new hire will answer “no,” but their reaction may help you gain an understanding. And, if nothing else, it will force the employee to reflect internally.
What’s one thing you would change about the job?
You might be surprised to learn the employee sits in traffic for an hour because of the 9 a.m. start time so they rather come in early and leave early. It could be an easy fix, so ask.
Is there anything you miss about your last job?
A resounding “no” would be nice to hear but whatever they answer might lend insight into what’s missing at your company (e.g., friendly coworkers, clear company communication or free lunches).