Onboarding: Why get it wrong when you can get it so right?

It’s fair to say that most employers understand the importance of properly onboarding new employees, so why do so many continue to get it wrong?

A study by Gallup showed that just 12 percent of employees strongly agree that their company is skilled at onboarding new employees. Not great news.

We’re on a mission to change this, one organisation at a time. So here are some of our top tips for onboarding new employees from pre-induction right through to 6 months down the line.

Stay in touch

In some cases it can be quite some time before your new hire walks through the doors of the office, so keeping in touch before ‘day one’ is important.

The Human Capital Institute found that over half of companies focus their onboarding on processes and paperwork so it’s no wonder they get a bad rap. So instead of having your new employees sit through an induction focused on box-ticking, policies and procedures, start engaging them beforehand.

Tip: Ask your new hires to complete necessary paperwork, access e-learning and read more about your organisation’s culture and processes before their first day. It’ll save valuable time during induction and have them feeling a part of the team before they’ve even arrived.

Go above and beyond

Stats revealed by Glassdoor suggest that organisations with a strong onboarding process improve new hire retention by 82 percent and productivity by over 70 percent.

And with the average cost of hiring at Executive level often into the thousands, it pays to have a process that brings value to your people.

Tip: Send a personalised pre-induction welcome video to your new employee from their manager or trainer. It offers a warm introduction to a person they’ll be working with when they arrive to start their new role and is something that will show your company is invested in making their experience as good as it can be.

Use initial induction time wisely

It goes without saying that the trainer running your employees’ inductions is an expert at what they do. So it’s best for everyone to use their time wisely.

Inductions should be centred around practical, tangible advice and learning that’s relevant to the job role. Not spending time reading through generic information that could be covered individually outside the session.

According to Digitate, employees who had a negative onboarding experience are twice as likely to look for other career opportunities in the future. So it’s important to get this balance right.

Tip: It’s a good idea to start with the end in mind in training. Make ‘doing the job’ the core of the induction. For example, if you’re training telephony agents, play a call on day one and get them speaking to real customers as early in the induction as possible. They’ll feel like they’re adding value and it will remove the creeping fear of taking that first call.

Development is key

After induction there’s a period of time where your people will be developing what they’ve learned by putting it into practice.

Having a post-induction plan that actively engages your staff and acknowledges this period of development is key to increasing the chances of new employees staying in the business, growing and progressing.

Tip: Run an ambassador/buddy programme to help new hires to become competent in their roles. Because according to HCI, 87 percent of organizations that do this during the onboarding process say that it’s an effective way to help new hires settle into their new roles. It’s also a great development opportunity for your existing, more experienced population.

Keep people engaged after induction

When a person’s initial training is over, their learning is far from finished. For this reason, don’t feel the need to cram everything into the induction process.

Tip: Set up a development centre where staff can progress their skills even further over time. This isn’t just about the ‘classroom stuff’, it should include practical learning and tangible advice, taking a blended approach using online and offline methods.

Change up your onboarding process

If your company’s onboarding process is lacking, we can help.

Whether you’re losing new employees just a few months’ in or are looking for an interactive way to engage new hires during induction, get in touch with our friendly team today.