Wednesday May 22 2019

Firms need to help new employees avoid any IT mishaps

Robert Rutherford


Firms need to help new employees avoid any IT mishaps

Recruiting new employees is a common task for most businesses, but the time spent on bringing new people into the business often fades once they join the team – especially when it comes to IT training. Onboarding is an important part of the employee experience – not only to make sure staff feel welcome, but to also ensure they are able to keep the company secure and protected.

Recognising variety

New employees come from all walks of life, and from various different experience levels. This variety is great for the wider goals of the company, but it poses a problem with it comes to making sure everyone follows the same processes. Quite often, these staff are expected to automatically understand how the company’s IT functions with little to no training.

Beyond general IT literacy, there are unique elements to IT in each business that rarely get explained. Whether it is sending a calendar invite, filing content securely, or simply understanding the operating system, staff will all have a different grasp of the company’s day-to-day IT.

It is understandable that new staff who are eager to impress may be shy to ask about certain IT functions that are either brand new to them or completely different to how they have been used to working. Some may push ahead with an alternative approach, but this may completely clash with how the business usually runs its IT. If left unattended, these work-around solutions can create a major risk to the company’s security.

Getting involved

If an employee does not understand the guidelines for using the company’s IT, they can easily fall foul of accidently leaving data vulnerable, sharing private information or even breaking compliance with data regulation. Despite the challenge this poses, many organisations are still lacking the awareness needed to prevent this issue.

The core reason why this issue has not been overcome sooner is that many business leaders assume that the company’s IT will provide enough security to the business on its own. However, while robust firewalls and virus protection programs are a necessity, an untrained recruit can easily cause separate IT issues that this software cannot defend against, such as responding to a phishing email or misfiling sensitive data.  

Singing from the same sheet

Making IT guidelines part of a new recruit’s onboarding is vital for ensuring the security of the business. Firstly, it overcomes the inevitable shyness that new employees may have about unknown IT processes, providing everyone – regardless of their role – the same foundation to work from. By incorporating the company’s IT into the onboarding process, staff will also feel more confident about raising questions or asking for more hands-on support.

However, most importantly, including some IT basics as part of a new employee’s induction will protect the company from any potential leaks through lack of staff awareness. With this approach, employees will quickly understand the importance of data protection and also recognise which behaviours could be putting the company in danger.

Although bringing the best talent onboard is a top priority for most businesses, ensuring these staff are fully capable from day one is equally important – especially when it comes to IT. In doing so, the business will be giving employees a good start to their role and also keeping the company secure.


"If an employee does not understand the guidelines for using the companys IT, they can easily fall foul of accidently leaving data vulnerable, sharing private information or even breaking compliance."
Robert Rutherford, CEO of QuoStar

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