Most employees are apprehensive the first day of a new job. Though they’ve already secured a role within your business, they still have a lot to go through. From joining a new team, impressing the boss, learning their new role and getting to grips with a new working environment, it’s all very daunting. A good onboarding process will help new hires ease into their roles, so whether you have an established process or looking to implement one, you should find this information useful.
Afterall, a welcoming, well formed and effective onboarding process will serve both employees and employers. Not just in the short term, but long into the employee lifecycle as it instils a feeling of acceptance and communication in the workplace. Getting the onboarding process right is vital, so below are critical elements to take into account for your process
Have an onboarding plan, but keep it simple.
Regardless of the size of your business, a detailed plan for the onboarding process is a handy tool, it helps to create a structure and defined implementmentation process, achieving the best results. Such plans help new hires quickly understand company policies and workflows while getting familiarised with the businesses culture. Plans like this often include a timeline for completing tasks, scheduling meetings with the leading people and general meet and greets with the rest of the team. Take the time to hash out what you want to include in your document and adjust it over time, so it evolves with your business. It will also give you a structure to build upon as you learn which parts of your process are useful or futile.
However, one of the challenges that new hires face during the onboarding process is information overload. There’s so much to learn and get to grips with, that it can be very overwhelming to digest. An onboarding plan will make the process as easy as possible, but it should be fluid and unrestrictive. Allow some flexibility and if needed alter the plan to suit the learning speed of the employee.
Give it time and have patience.
Onboarding involves easing new hires into a role in your business that you hope they will hold for some time and that they will be successful in. As the expression goes, if a job is worth doing, it’s worth doing right. So you should be willing to spend the time needed on this new hire, ensuring they’re comfortable and ready for the duties and responsibilities of the new position.
It can be tempting to get your new hires to work as quickly as possible for business reasons, but it’s better if you give them a chance to ease into their new roles. In the long run, this means they will be more productive in their roles. Introduce things one at a time, and give them some time to learn and understand each new task. Afterall, you don’t want to drain them on day one; as it can take anything up to six months to become fully suitable to a new position. Simply out just have patience and ensure they have your time.
Bust the boredom – make it interactive and social.
An abundance of onboarding meetings that involve tiresome videos or slideshow presentations just don’t work and can immediately dull the senses of your new hires. Though a small number of people learn using these platforms, far more learn with the “hands-on” or “learn on the job” approach. Communicating with various colleagues and workplace teams offer new hires the opportunity to gain the first-hand experience they need, and the chance to ask questions as they arise.
While onboarding is an individual process, it should be as social as possible. Rarely will an employee work in a position without any team interaction or group work. Social onboarding will not only help with the actual on-the-job training, but it will also allow employees to build social bonds with the team. It connects them to the company and begins to adjust their personal goals in line with their position and set the foundations for company loyalty going forward. This the best way to make the onboarding process as interactive as possible, busting the boredom involved in onboarding from the offset.
Ask for feedback and use it.
The simplest but most effective of all the points, to ensure that your onboarding program is working, is to reach out to new hires for feedback on their experiences. This can range from a formal, structured survey to a more informal check in over a coffee or lunch. Most importantly make sure to show new hires that their feedback is valuable by introducing it where possible. If there is a recommendation that isn’t possible, let them know that their ideas are acknowledged and welcomed.
In the long run, these will improve your new employee onboarding process, ensuring the best for your business and your employees.