To conduct an orientation that keeps new employees' attention engaged while introducing them to the company, start with activities to make everyone comfortable, gear the training to their jobs, and provide active learning exercises. Use a checklist to ensure that you cover all necessary topics.
Offering breakfast or refreshments at the start of orientation welcomes attendees as they wait for the session to start. The first activity might be a brief welcome that gives the agenda. Following it with introductions helps break the ice and put people at ease. A group activity in which people interact with their neighbors is another icebreaker.
Alternate necessary training topics such as company history and administrative procedures with topics geared to the employee. Also alternate training methods, so that PowerPoint presentations intersperse with videos, discussions and hands-on exercises such as case studies and role playing. Active participation helps employees stay interested and increases retention of the material.
Plan the orientation with a checklist such as the example at HCareers.com. The law may require all employees to hear about items such as harassment policies. Training on computer applications may require separate sessions. The class may need to break into groups for job-specific training.