How to Build a Successful Employee Onboarding Process

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Business success in the present day, demands companies to retain, build, and nurture talent boosting productivity. HR teams strive to build a pipeline of talent, and help to measure and manage employee performance. In this process of talent management, a key aspect is building an effective and robust onboarding system. Onboarding sets the pace and tone to an employee’s stint in the organization. Hence, much care has to be taken, to handhold and ensure that new employees are assimilated into the organization with a well-oiled onboarding process. With a startup or a smaller organization, a formal onboarding may not be always necessary. However, as companies grow bigger, it is essential to build a formal, structured, and effective onboarding process.

Here’s are a few guidelines to keep in mind while implementing an effective onboarding process.

Prepare yourself and the new hire

A lot can be done and achieved in the weeks and days from hiring an employee to the actual joining date. It is best, to be prepared for the new hire, with respect to their individual needs. Getting things organized and sorted out after an employee joins makes the employee feel unwelcome.

Much of the paperwork on the part of the employee can be done prior to joining through an Employee portal, or via mails. Access to the employee portal can also help them connect to the organization as a whole, with a newsfeed and other company-related information.

Here’s a checklist of things to do prior to the employee joining

  • Communicate with regard to joining formalities
  • Prepare paperwork
  • Email copy of employee handbook
  • Prepare the new hire with the where, when and how of his first day/week at work

Here’s a quick round-up on what to prepare for the first day at work

  • Setup the employee workstation
  • Provide necessary access, logins and permits for the employee
  • Assign a work buddy
  • Let everyone know you have someone new onboard
  • Create and share the new hires first week/ month itinerary
  • Connect the new hire with his manager and team
  • An office/campus tour
  • A welcome gift/card

Managers and HR could check in on the new hire, during the first week and post the first 30 days. Areas that the new hire is finding it difficult to tackle can be dealt with at this time. It is helpful to take note of things or areas that were not addressed in the onboarding process. This helps to make further improvements for future onboarding training.

Familiarize them with the company culture

A poor integration in the company culture is one of the leading reasons for new hire failures. However, very few companies impart and integrate new hires into the company culture effectively. Imparting the company mission, vision and ethos form a crucial element in the onboarding process.

As an anchor of the onboarding process, you would be the first face and name that the employee connects to the company culture. So, it’s important to communicate and represent the company culture at an individual level and at the company level. Employee onboarding portals can be leveraged to showcase what matters to the company, what is rewarded, what is recognized, and what the company as a whole stands for and is aiming for.

The company’s vision must be stated on every hire’s first day. The team and all employees in the company must know the company vision and their part in accomplishing it. This must be further reiterated to the new hires, in different means of communication. The company values and its vision must be seamlessly implemented in the onboarding process, such that the new hire imbibes it and quickly owns his part in it.

Communication and Feedback

Getting the new hire on his job at the earliest provides a sense of ownership. Even if it is a small task, it is good to start the employee on a job on the first day. This helps them get focused and gets them to start contributing to the team. Communicating expectations, and providing a means of feedback and response will help build confidence.

Provide new hires with clear expectations and goals. Get into the details, and help clarify their doubts should there be any grey areas. Let them know you are committed to their development and career within the organization. Take them through how they can grow, how they can build themselves, and the company’s interest in developing its talent pool.

Feedback from new hires, at regular intervals, helps to improve on the existing onboarding system. An effective onboarding process is a key to building a talent pool, retaining talent, and increasing productivity.

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