Is it Time to Rethink Your Onboarding Process?
What does your current onboarding process look like? If it does not set your employees up for success right from the start, then it may be time to rethink it. After all the time and effort that your company spent recruiting the ideal candidate for the job, you want to ensure that they are off to a good start once they begin working for you. A successful onboarding process is realistic, not systematic. It focuses on what the employee really needs to know to get started on day one. So, just what do they need to get started and how do you welcome them aboard properly? Here are some questions to consider for your onboarding process.
Do you engage employees on day one?
First impressions are important. Are you maximizing your new employees’ engagement or are you overloading them with paperwork and handbooks? While it is important to share information about how to request time off and insurance options, unless the new employee is working in the human resources department, this information is not really relevant to the job. And there are better ways to share it than a thick packet of paperwork.
However, you can engage employees right from the start with a few simple changes in your onboarding process. Instead of starting the day reviewing manuals and PowerPoint slides, utilize an Explainer video to introduce the material, then take the new employees on a tour of the building. On your walk, make sure to introduce them to different people that they should become familiar with. Knowing who to ask about a question or problem is just as important as knowing where to find a snack machine.
Does your process look great, sound great, and utilize the latest technology?
New hires do need to understand basic information about the company, policies, and procedures, even if it seems boring or irrelevant. However, you can make it more interesting and engaging. This is one area where technology plays a role. With technology, you can effectively engage new employees with information that looks good, sounds good, and utilizes the latest high-tech tools for an overall stellar presentation. (Because you still need to make a good impression even after you have hired them.)
For example, to share basic information about the company and its culture, introduce it to new employees with an explainer video. This is much more effective and visually appealing than a PowerPoint presentation. Explainer videos tell a story with animation and graphics. They can make learning about the company fun and entertaining. And since 65 percent of all learners are visual learners, this is another great way to keep your new employees engaged.
Another high-tech trend that companies have begun using for onboarding is gamification. Gamification allows for a more involved, engaging experience for new employees. It motivates and excites them to be a part of the company. This is important because recent research reveals that 22 percent of all employee turnover happens in the first 45 days.
How flexible is your onboarding process?
When you bring on new employees, no matter how well thought-out your onboarding process is, they are not going to “get” it all on the first day, and probably not on the second day either. There is just too much information to keep track of.
You can ease the stress of information overload by creating a more flexible onboarding process. Utilize eLearning materials that are easily accessible for your employees at any time. Create eLearning modules that they can access from work or at home. Sometimes it is much easier for people to sit in the comfort and quiet of their own home to review a module for work. Having the flexibility and access to do this can help ease the anxiety of a new job and make the onboarding process much more successful.
Classic onboarding mistakes – are you making any of these?
Now that you know a few things that you should do to successfully onboard your new employees, here are a few classic mistakes to avoid:
- Not explaining your expectations clearly. Giving new employees a clear set of expectations and realistic goals helps them and you. They understand what is expected of them (which can reduce the anxiety of starting a new job) and you can maximize their potential early on.
- Formalizing the paperwork process. Paperwork is cumbersome. And often times, there is a lot of it for new employees. Instead of printing the documents, and having a formal filing process, automate everything. There are plenty of software and high-tech solutions that can keep you organized, and on-track.
- Short-changing your new hire’s potential. When you hire someone new, it is for a good reason. You believe in their capabilities. Yet, often times companies start them off doing meaningless work that doesn’t live up to their potential. Give your new employees a challenging task right from the start and let them show their true potential. It builds confidence and motivation and maximizes their value for the company.
If any of these classic mistakes sound like part of your current onboarding process, then it may be time for a change. After all that you did to attract them to your company, isn’t it a good idea to put some procedures in place to ensure that you keep them? At Try It Now Training, we offer a variety of tools and resources that can help you make a lasting impression on your new team members. Contact us to get started.