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Employee Onboarding: Steps for New Employees

Employee onboarding is an essential process in any effective organization.  However, many organizations downplay the potential impacts and rewards in developing a full-fledged and comprehensive employee onboarding system.  We’re going to discuss all things employee onboarding and its benefits.  We hope that by the end of this article, employee onboarding will be a topic front-and-center to your organization.

What is employee onboarding?  Employee onboarding, in its simplest terms, is the process by-which an organization provides new employees with the necessary skills, tools, behaviors, and mechanisms to become effective members of the organization.

Essentially, employee onboarding is an organizations opportunity to introduce new employees to the organization.  This introductory period, or window, is short-lived.  An effective organization will look to successfully onboard a new employee as-soon-as-possible and provide them with the necessary skills and knowledge to have a better understanding of the organization.

Why is Employee Onboarding so Important?

Employee onboarding is important because it sets the tone for a new employee.  Although many employee onboarding systems simply look to provide a high-level, holistic view of the organization, it can be so much more than that.  In addition to introducing a new employee to the organization, an effective employee onboarding looks to empower an employee from the first day.

New employees are typically willing and eager to learn the mechanisms and mechanics of an organization.  These mechanisms, while time-consuming, can be used to develop effective, long-lasting employees.  By providing new employees with an onboarding system, they are more likely to develop an affinization to the organization and its structure.

Moreover, effective employee onboarding systems look to enhance an employee’s time with the organization.  By provide immediate mentorship and resources, the organization reinforces their culture and increases an employee’s retention.  Both of which are effective tools in hiring additional members and promoting the growth of the organization.

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How Long Should Employee Onboarding Last?

Effective employee onboarding should never have an end date.  As it is difficult to find, hire, and retain good talent, an organization should take every step possible to create an onboarding system that follows the employee throughout their tenure at the organization.

In addition to immediate onboarding solutions on an employee’s first day, organizations should look to begin onboarding an employee before they start.  This includes sending welcome packages or a small gift, welcoming the employee to the team.  In addition, management should be tasked with initial outreach, introducing themselves and welcoming the employee to the team.

Once the employee begins, the onboarding should last for a minimum of 90-days.  This includes an initial orientation, as well as weekly or bi-weekly follow-ups.  These follow-ups should be brought forth by both the manager and the human resources department.

The organization should be aware of the employee’s needs, how they are adjusting, and what needs or accommodations can be made to make the transition easier.  Management and human resources should be in contact with one-another in looking to identify employee touch points and providing the employee with the updates needed.

From there, and after the initial 90-day official onboarding process, both management and human resources should ensure that frequent touchpoints are being conducted.  This differs from weekly one-on-one meetings.  Rather, these should be informal conversations, ensuring that the employee is satisfied and placed in a position to succeed.  By regularly checking-in with the employee, the organization greatly increases their chances at retaining employees and fixing underlying issues, which may not be immediately noticed.

Key Aspects of a Successful Employee Onboarding

Successful employee onboarding requires, and should include, logistical items such as new hire paperwork, legal documents, and tax information.  However, beyond those items, a successful onboarding process should be an opportunity to present the organization to the employee.

Knowledge Transfer

Above all else, employee onboarding systems should be a time to transfer knowledge to new employees.  This can include both logistical items, such as pay schedules, a tour of the facilities, and organizational benefits, in addition to more nuanced topics, such-as specific information regarding the employee’s job role and functions.

Enlightenment

New employees should be enlightened as to the opportunities that are present within the organization.  This will help them to develop a relationship with the organization and encourage their enthusiasm in joining the organization.

You should approach this part in trying to sell the organization to the employee.  This will help to clear any possible doubts they may be having and will help with exciting the employee on the possibilities within the organization.

Develop Passion

An organization’s employees are their greatest and biggest representation.  By having a dedicated, passionate, caring employee staff, the organization increases their outward reputation and ability to attract additional clients and staff.  This passion, while typically developed over a period of time, can begin on hire and during the onboarding process.

All Things Employee Onboarding

Why Onboarding is Essential

In addition to the plethora of reasons listed above, employee onboarding can have additional benefits to both the organization and the employee.  These benefits will be both long-lasting and will create a more willing, capable, and able workforce and staff.  By taking the time to develop a comprehensive employee onboarding system, organizations set both themselves and their employees for immediate and future, long-term success.

  1. Reduce Turnover and the Costs Associated with Turnover

Employee turnover costs the organization an estimated 100-300% of the individual’s salary.  This is money that can be put to more effective uses.  An employee departure can also have psychological effects on other employees, as they look to pick-up the additional workload and decrease in overall morale.  By investing time in the onboarding process, companies can save these costs and increase employee morale.

  1. Ensure Compliance and Uniform Training

Compliance is a key issue in most organizations.  By keeping employees informed on certain compliance procedures, organizations are able to avoid any potential issues or mishaps.  These are issues that can be costly and time-consuming.  In addition, an organization is able to protect itself by providing specific guidelines on acceptable behavior and behavior that won’t be tolerated from the get-go.

  1. Onboarding Creates a Workplace Culture

All workplaces have their own culture.  By introducing this culture from the first day, an organization is able to ensure that new employees have an understanding of it.  In addition, onboarding allows for an opportunity to integrate these new employees into the culture and what the organization stands for.

  1. Onboarding Creates Relationships

Effective onboarding creates long-lasting relationships between colleagues.  These are relationships that will be used when an employee is feeling lost, confused, or unsure on a topic.  By creating relationships, employees will be more satisfied and productive while at work.

  1. Onboarding Helps Employees Understand Their Roles

A successful onboarding program will help employees to understand their roles and what is expected of them.  They will get a clear idea of the organization and where they fit within the hierarchy.  In addition, the onboarding process will solidify what exactly the employee will be expected to do and how to do their jobs well.

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