Though most companies realize the need for a structured onboarding process and have put effective steps in place to make sure the onboarding experience is a successful one, there are always methods to get better at it, through some well thought out initiatives.

While the importance of employee onboarding cannot be overstated, many companies don’t get it right. This initiation phase of employees is directly related to the overall productivity, engagement and retention in a company.

While great care is taken to source, screen and get the perfect fit for a role, the process of employee onboarding often goes in a rush. Teams, deadlines and targets push the employee to quickly get onboard, and often very little care is taken to initiate the employee into his role. The process of transition and initiation is either rushed, or done more by default than design. If the employee is left in the lurch, having to figure it out by himself, disengagement starts right there. We provide steps the organisations should take towards designing a successful onboarding program.

  • Compliance

Compliance is the clear understanding of the organization’s policies and procedures. This includes the organisation’s rules and regulations. The Organisation sets standards for expected level of behavior for all its employees.  From a policy viewpoint, there are many factors that go into the determination of an organization’s policies, including statutory and regulatory requirements or organizational practices.

  • Connect

It is vital that new hires establish social connections within the organisation and there is a platform available to get access to other employees. New hires should be able to communicate and connect with HR, co-workers, mentors and team members.  HR Managers should guide the new hire to establish strong relationships and social networks within the organization. Make certain that the new hires are acquainted with the organisation hierarchy and connect with the different departments within the company.  A mentor’s role becomes very critical is ensuring that the new hire gets the right guidance at the very offset.

  • Competence

Ensure new hires acquire the necessary knowledge, skills, and behaviors to become effective organizational members. The purpose of the onboarding program is to ensure new hires are totally equipped for the new role with all the tools and skills required to be productive. From a manager’s point of view, a new hire can’t come up to speed fast enough. Balancing the employee’s need to acquire the right skills for the job and the goal to have him be productive right away is a catch-22 situation for any time bound manager.

  • Culture

A new hire coming onboard from outside the organisation doesn’t necessarily know the culture of the organization. A new hire should be immersed into your organization’s culture throughout the onboarding program. The new hire should be made aware of the company vision, values, norms, systems, symbols, language, assumptions, environment, location, beliefs, and habits. New hires should learn and embrace the new organisational culture as soon as possible. Culture and onboarding have a mutually dependent and beneficial relationship. Poor fit with the culture is the no. 1 cause of new hire failure. A better understanding of the company culture with its shared values, beliefs, habits, attitudes along with accepted norms of behavior is key to a successful onboarding experience.

  • Clarify

The new hire needs to have clarity regarding his role- duties, responsibilities and job expectations with the key performance indicators from the beginning.  He needs to be aware of the level of performance expected from him and how his work will be evaluated and performance appraisal handled.

  • Check

Get feedback from the employee with regard to his “settling in” – in the organization. Review the new hire performance and provide feedback on specific tasks. Provide relevant feedback – regularly and consistently. Review performance and development goals. Facilitate one on one meetings with managers, skip level managers and HR. Review the employee with the assigned buddy for feedback.