After you hire, there are many actions you need to take to onboard new employees effectively. Sure, you need to complete new hire paperwork and provide employees with the right system access to get started in their new jobs. But you derive lasting value from onboarding when you give new hires access to resources to help them become productive, engaged members of your workforce.
In this post, you’ll learn about the importance of a structured employee onboarding program, and the steps you can take to build one.
Why Great Employee Onboarding is So Essential
Employee onboarding comprises the many experiences that help new employees understand your organization’s culture, people, and processes. It can cover a variety of elements, such as people introductions, training, and goal-setting. As a result, onboarding can often mean the difference between new hires who quickly add value and those that don’t.
When done right, new employee onboarding can deliver a range of benefits to your organization and employees, including the following:
- Lower turnover: Employees who receive the support they need to get their bearings in a new role may be less likely to leave early in their tenure. According to Brandon Hall Group research, organizations with a strong onboarding process improve new hire retention by 82 percent.
- Higher employee engagement: New hires with early opportunities to build relationships with company leaders and other employees have a better chance of becoming more connected to your organization and its goals.
- Quicker ramp-up to productivity: When new hires know who to ask and where to look for key information, they can spend more time getting things done and less time searching for answers.
How to Build an Effective Employee Onboarding Program
Despite the many benefits of a structured employee onboarding program, successful onboarding remains an elusive goal for many organizations. According to Gallup research, only 12 percent of employees said their organization did a great job onboarding new employees.
To ensure your organization onboards employees effectively and positions them well for future success, take the following actions:
- Build a structured onboarding timeline: To use everyone’s time efficiently and ensure you don’t leave out any steps, create a timeline of onboarding activities. Make sure you include all the individuals a new hire needs to meet, as well as all training and orientations with existing company processes and systems.
- Incorporate cross-team and cross-function introductions: While building relationships with immediate team members is an essential component of employee onboarding, new hires can also benefit from getting to know individuals on other teams and in other departments. Cross-group relationship-building gives new hires a chance to hear different employee perspectives and get a more in-depth understanding of your organization.
- Set goals and expectations early: New hires need clarity about performance expectations early on. You can help new employees get started off on the right food by introducing them to your goal-setting and feedback processes, so they know what to expect and how their contributions will be measured.
- Give new hires a buddy: Even the most structured onboarding programs can omit small details that may be important to new hires. To ensure employees have the resources to fill in the gaps, match them with an onboarding “buddy” who can answer their questions, make additional introductions, and provide informal advice. Microsoft research found that onboarding buddies help to boost new hire productivity, job satisfaction, and knowledge of company cultural norms.
- Adapt your onboarding program to meet the needs of remote hires: These days, many companies are hiring more remote employees than ever before. But just because new hires are working off-site doesn’t mean you can’t have a robust and relevant onboarding process. To meet the onboarding needs of new remote hires, consider adding electronic onboarding resources such as video introductions, an online resource library, and e-learning training options.
Elevate Your Onboarding Success
A great onboarding program can help you get new hires up and running in a new role. By following these tips for helping new employees learn about your culture and internal operations, you can position them to become productive and knowledgeable members of your workforce. But you don’t have to do it all on your own. As a full-service provider of HR services, MarvelHR can help you create and implement an onboarding program that delivers results. Contact us to learn more.