Employing new members of staff isn’t just about making sure they’re right for the position and can do the job. They will need to be able to function in an office environment while completing the simplest of tasks. After all, shouldn’t staff members know the ins and outs of the company?

 

There is a range of skills that employees should know, and they may not need to attend any paid-for staff training courses. These will not only help them with their job but in life in general.

 

Using office software

In an office environment, employees will be required to use email programs, spreadsheets, and word processors. In order to remove any barriers while working, make sure that staff receive adequate training for all of these systems. They should at least have a basic understanding of how each program functions and how they are used in the office.

Your staff members may not need to know the difference between IMAP and POP3 email account in Outlook, but should be able to create a signature. The same goes for creating presentations in Powerpoint, or why the company uses Google Drive as opposed to Microsoft Office.

 

Transferring calls and answering the phone

The company’s receptionist or personal assistants will all be versed in operating PBX systems, but what about the accountants or other workers? In order to have calls correctly transferred and the company presented in a professional manner, all employees should receive training when answering the phone.

This may seem like a silly point, but the moment they answer the phone they are the face of the company. You don’t want important calls dropped because a staff member doesn’t understand how to transfer the call correctly.

 

Computer operation and troubleshooting

The IT department may be the ones that fix all of the computers, but they won’t be around all of the time – especially if they are outsourced. Having staff versed in the basics of computer troubleshooting may just save your company time or money, instead of calling over someone else.

Be sure your staff understand how to connect to the office network, why computer updates are important, and not to turn off the antivirus software on their PCs. Not to mention that restarting the system can fix a lot of problems.

 

All of the internal programs

There’s nothing more daunting than joining a new company with lots of systems in place and not knowing a thing about them. You may think that Slack or Trello are easy programs to use in an everyday office environment, but your new hires may not. In order to get them onboard and not re-think their new employment, be sure that they receive adequate training with the software.

The same can be said for any internal communications, such as Skype. With employees knowing how to use them, they can be powerful systems.

 

What everyone else does in the office

This point isn’t training per say, but it is still useful to everyone in the office. Be sure that all staff members know what the job is of everyone else. Being able to know who the accounts, IT department, and sales people are will go a long way to making sure that the company operates as smoothly as possible. In fact, keep an internal list with profile pictures, names, and job positions that anyone can access.

 

Public speaking

Don’t worry, your staff won’t need to be members of Toastmasters. When it comes to having office meetings or stand up sessions, there may be some members that don’t want to participate. This may not be due to them being lazy or not knowledgeable, but rather not having the ability to speak in public.

Helping them overcome the fear or any other problems with public speaking and giving them confidence will go a long way in helping them be better members of staff. Also be sure not to force the issue and pass employees into any uncomfortable situations.

Taking all of these points into account, you will be able to create a work environment that is self-sufficient and able to function on its own. You will still need to guide the company and staff members, but it will be a little easier.

About The Author

I was born in the Eastern Cape, close to the waves. After getting my degree in Media, Communication and Culture, I knew it was time to make my way to a big city. Not wanting to leave the ocean, Cape Town was the natural choice for me. At first I thought the fast paced world of marketing. But I never forgot that what I'd always wanted to do was write. Now I'm a freelance writer, where my office is my bedroom and my platform is the World Wide Web. I live with my partner and our two beloved Great Danes. When not reading or writing you can probably find me on the beach or exploring nature trails.

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