7 Things Your Employee Onboarding Must Have
The onboarding experience is one of the chief determinants of how your employee will view your organization. While an accurate understanding of what exactly entails employee onboarding eludes most companies, which tend to see it as little more than the customary paperwork and formalities, recent studies have highlighted just how vital this stage is in the employee journey. Employees are 69% more likely to stay with a company for up to three years if they’ve had a good onboarding experience. Additionally, organizations with a proper onboarding process in place experience 54% greater new hire productivity.
While it might be unfair to say that employee onboarding is entirely neglected by companies, attempts for its successful execution have surely been misdirected. Effective employee onboarding is not a difficult code to crack, but one that certainly requires due thought and consideration!
Here are 7 things you might want to look into to ensure that your employees have a memorable onboarding experience!
1. Get Your Facts Right!
Let’s get this out of the way. Onboarding does NOT equal Orientation. Most of the time, HR will mistake a proper onboarding experience for a simple day-long orientation encompassing the standard paperwork and procedures which they’ll hastily try to wrap up.
Onboarding is in fact a much larger project, multifaceted in nature and stretching over a span of several weeks. Its purpose is not merely to address the obligatory formalities of induction, but to in fact acclimate the employee to a new environment and set the tone for their journey with the organization. A great onboarding experience is one that creates a lasting impact; that seamlessly assimilates the employee into the fabric of the company and inspires them to contribute positively to its progress.
2. The Game Plan
Organizations that want to enhance their onboarding process and make it a truly enriching experience for the new hire will conscientiously draft an exhaustive plan for how they want the onboarding to unfold. A time bound plan that can break down the onboarding into a series of progressive stages and identify the duration, tasks and expected outcomes associated with each stage can help HR execute their onboarding to perfection. This way, they can fine-tune the process by preempting possible bottlenecks and taking care of them beforehand.
3. Calm the First Day Jitters!
Your new hire, no matter how experienced and confident, will in all likelihood be a nervous wreck on their first day. New place, new people, new role – it’s a perfect recipe for some serious jitters! Do what you can to ease their anxiety by communicating all the basics that they’ll need to know. Here’s a checklist you can follow:
1. What’s the date of my joining? What time should I reach?
2. What’s the address?
3. Whom do I report to and where I can find them?
4. Is there anything I need to bring with me?
Communicate these details via email, following it up with a friendly call to ensure they’ve read the mail.
5. Put Out the Welcome Mat.
This cannot be stressed enough. For most new hires, their first day will be a snapshot of what the company holds for them. Go out of the way to make sure that the perception they develop of you is a positive one. Welcome them cheerfully and keep a relaxed demeanor to comfort them. Get the other employees on board to put the new hire at ease. An onboarding that doesn’t involve the rest of the employees to help the new hire adjust will always yield limited results. Get everyone to pitch in and make a special effort. Here are some things you can do to prepare for a warm welcome:
- Decorate their working space with a warm welcome letter and a gift (chocolates, company merchandise always work).
- Offer them free lunch on their first day.
- Give them an office tour. It’s a new environment for them. They’ll want someone to show them around.
- Assign a mentor to them; somebody they can chat and have lunch with. It always takes some time to cultivate friendships at a workplace. Ease the process for them by ensuring that they have a friendly figure to turn to during their first few days.
- Plan out ice breaking activities that allow the new hire to warm up to their colleagues and get to know them better. These could be in the form of short ice breaking exercises or something more extensive like team lunches.
6. Make Technology your Friend.
This is the most significant aspect of streamlining the process for the new hire. Employee onboarding softwares have recently made a splash in the market and have since then generated a positive word of mouth. By consolidating various procedures and documents into a single unit, these softwares offer organizations the option of automating employee onboarding, thereby optimizing its efficiency for HR as well as the new hire.
Here are some features of onboarding softwares that make it a must-have for any company wanting to ace its onboarding game.
- Digital forms that replace tedious paperwork.
- Customizable landing pages and forms.
- Digital Employee Records that capture all necessary details of employees.
- Uploading and storing the resources that the new hire will need to familiarize themselves with their role and company policies.
- The option to have discussions across departments in the comments section.
- Digital assignment of tasks.
- The option to play with a variety of tools, such as graphics, images, videos etc when sharing information.
AfterHire is a customizable onboarding software that promises to deliver an outstanding employee onboarding experience by automating workflows, capturing employee information digitally, identifying bottlenecks in the onboarding process and even generating insightful metrics through which the process can be enhanced. An opportunity for HR to take onboarding to another level with minimal effort on their part, these softwares are the ultimate solution to all onboarding struggles and inefficiencies you’ve previously confronted!
Note #1: Be mindful of the impersonal implications of fully shifting to automated processes. Be sure to also personally discuss with new hires important information. Help them navigate the software so they don’t have trouble accessing important documents. Then, ask them if there’s any confusion and answer patiently whatever queries they might have.
Note#2: Do NOT bombard them with all the material immediately. This can be hugely overwhelming, causing them to absorb precious little and feel even more intimidated. Spread out the material and tasks over a span of weeks until you’re sure that the new hire is prepared to take on the full-fledged responsibilities of their role.
7. Feedback Never Did Any Harm.
You might think you’ve done your onboarding just right, but it’s always best to ask for the new hire’s honest feedback. Inquire about what worked wonders and what simply fell flat. Employees will always value organizations that make them feel heard and are willing to improve upon their mistakes and better themselves.
Onboarding is a crucial stepping stone to the new hire’s performance and achievements in your organization. In fact, in many ways, it can be a make or break situation for them. You spend so much time, money and effort into roping in your employee extraordinaire, so it only makes sense to go a step ahead and ensure their transition is also one that’s smooth and seamless. This way, they’ll hit their stride sooner rather than later and you can be assured that you had a role to play in it!
AfterHire can help you save time, reduce cost, and retain great employees with an amazing onboarding experience. Book a meeting with the team or schedule a free demo here.