Many employers make the mistake of thinking that hiring is the hardest part of an employee’s journey. While it is important, it’s only the beginning.
The onboarding process is as equally important as the hiring process, if not more so. It’s the start of their (hopefully long and enjoyable) career working for you, meaning that it’s crucial that you get it right.
A poor onboarding process leads to a higher employee churn rate and a poor employer brand. In fact, up to 20% of employee churn happens in the first 45 days. That really doesn’t give you very long to make a great impression.
On the other hand, if an employee experiences a great onboarding process, they’re 69% more likely to still be there three years later.
So how do you create an effective employee onboarding process?
Get all the hardware ready
More than 42% of employees have started a job only to find that they don’t have the relevant equipment to work on. This includes a phone, a computer, and even a desk!
Be sure that you have all the equipment ready for your new hire before they start at your company. Even if they borrow someone else’s equipment while theirs is on its way, at least ensure that they have something to work on.
Set them up with the right software
There are lots of programs and applications that we use on a daily basis. Make sure there’s a company-wide list of what software different roles require, and if there are any licenses that need updating when new people take over the role.
If any new licences need acquiring, try to do this in advance. If this isn’t isn’t possible, at least invite the new hire to the software so that they can activate it themselves on their first day.
Ensure that your new hire is set up on the most important programs before they start. It’s important that things like email addresses, calendars, and other day-to-day programs are ready and waiting for them so that they can get started right away.
Give them time to train
There’s a lot to learn and a lot to take in when you first start a new job, so give them time to learn everything. Schedule training sessions into their calendar in advance, but don’t overwhelm them.
For training sessions that will take longer – for instance, using a complicated software – get different people to do each stage of the training process. This gives them the opportunity to meet other members of the team. It’s also a good chance for other team members to reinforce their knowledge.
You could even set them up with a mentor. This gives you more time to spend with the rest of the team and helps employees who may want to move to a more managerial role in the future get some experience.
Don’t overwhelm them
First days can be overwhelming. There’s a lot to take in, and your new employee may not remember everything straight away.
Don’t throw a ton of information at them as soon as they walk through the doors. Let them process it, and, if needs be, give them company policies and documents to take home and read at their own pace. They’ll be much more likely to take it in if they can read and process it at their own pace, not someone else’s.
Set clear objectives
Don’t just sit them down at a desk and tell them to get to work. Make it clear from the start what you expect.
Ask what they need from you to be successful in their new role, too. Continuous improvement is a key part of a successful onboarding process.
The sooner you set out these objectives, the sooner your new employee can start to work toward them.
Setting clear objectives sets them – and you – up for success.
Communicate company values
A company’s culture is one of the core elements that makes us stick around. It’s therefore important that you communicate your company’s core values.
This can be done with policies and documents, as well as including them in regular team meetings from the start. While they may not contribute at first, they will get a feel for how the team interacts and may be able to offer a fresh perspective on old problems.
Continuous improvement, embracing feedback, and learning from failure are just some of our values at Cronofy.
Use their fresh perspective
Your new employee will only be new for so long. Use this to your advantage.
Get them to look at pages and processes that you think need an overhaul. Their fresh pair of eyes will help you to see what’s wrong much faster and can suggest new ways to fix it that you may not have thought of.
Make them feel welcome
On average, it takes a new hire eight months to reach their full productivity. That’s why a well-organized, well-thought out onboarding process is so important. The more organized your onboarding process is, the faster your employees can begin to contribute to your team.
A disorganized onboarding process reflects badly on you and your company. It will lead new hires to think that that’s the kind of experience they can expect during their time there. First impressions matter, so be sure to make a good one.
Ultimately, you want to create a warm, welcoming environment for your new employee. The more comfortable you make them feel, the faster they’ll get settled and can get to work.