What happens when a new employee arrives at your company for their first day? Is everything ready for them? Do you make them feel welcome? Or do you throw your new hires right into the deep end and trust they know how to swim?
Even if you think you do a good job onboarding new staff, chances are you’re still not doing enough.
Tips to Set Your Team Up for Success
What is Onboarding?
Unlike orientation, which familiarizes new hires with the workplace, position, and staff, onboarding fully integrates a new hire into the organization.
“Onboarding is how new hires… learn the necessary skills, knowledge, and behaviors to become productive and engaged” team members, says Business.
“During onboarding, the new employee learns about organizational values, company culture, and the goals they will be working with their colleagues to achieve,” notes LinkedIn.
How Important is Onboarding?
According to a Gallup poll, only 12% of employees rate their company’s onboarding process as “excellent.” That means onboarding at a vast majority of companies is pretty mediocre. Most workers felt inadequate onboarding failed to set them up for success right from day one.
That hurts your company in two ways. First, it means your employees aren’t reaching their full potential. Second, it makes them much more likely to jump ship.
Onboarding Best Practices
Many experts agree that a comprehensive onboarding program should continue for at least the employee’s first 100 days and up to their first year of employment. And it should start even before their first day on the job.
Here are some ways you can improve employee onboarding:
Prepare in Advance
Order the equipment they need and set up their workspace before arriving. Email them with first-day instructions, like where to park. Prepare a welcome kit with an employee directory, policies and procedures, org chart, mission statement, and company swag.
“By communicating with a new employee ahead of time, you’ll make a positive first impression and ease any anxiety or apprehension they may be feeling about starting their new job,” says Indeed.
Encourage Socialization with Co-Workers
“Socialization is a major part of joining a new team, and it’s crucial to success in any role,” says Gallup.
Create opportunities for your new employee to connect with team members, so they can begin to feel like part of the company. This can include introducing your new hire, assigning a workplace buddy, and taking the team to lunch on their first day.
Provide Effective Training
A BambooHR survey found that “76 percent of new hires said on-the-job training was the most important thing they need to become productive quickly.”
Some of this training comes naturally as they learn their job, but they don’t rely on a new worker to immediately pick up new skills and run with them. Set expectations and provide the opportunity and time for them to adjust and learn.
Keeping up with your new hire helps both of you. They see that you value their work and are interested in your success. Conversely, you can ensure they are happy and comfortable, address concerns, gauge their progress, and assess their needs for additional training.
“Check-ins are also a good time to discuss expectations around employee performance and deliverables so that new employees don’t keep guessing if they’re doing a good job,” says 360 Learning.
Good Onboarding Impacts Success
A strong onboarding program is critical to employee retention and worker satisfaction. It strategically integrates new staff members into your organization and prepares them for success. Therefore, effective onboarding directly impacts your company’s bottom line.
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