Are you looking for strategies that can help you engage and retain your employees better? Why don’t you start by enhancing your onboarding efforts?
In this guide, we aim to assist HR professionals and leaders refine their onboarding strategies. We will discuss the elements affecting a new hire’s onboarding experience and provide you with practices inspired by these three.
3 Features that Can Make or Break an Onboarding Experience
Onboarding is crucial to incorporate new hires into the organization. This lays the foundation of what they’ll expect and need to know, affecting their entire working experience with you. If your onboarding process is executed poorly, it may affect how an employee views the organization and its members.
Gallup’s data highlights that only 12 percent of employees strongly believe their organization did a great job onboarding new hires.¹ On top of this, only 29 percent of new hires who experienced an onboarding felt fully prepared and supported to thrive in their new role.
According to Gallup, people, learning, and processes are the three critical elements during onboarding that can affect new hires’ experiences, giving importance to a candidate’s experience.²
Onboarding is about the connection your new hires can experience with their new colleagues. This is when they meet people, form social ties, and learn from their co-workers.
This is the perfect time to show them support and respect by establishing clear communication and providing guidance and feedback.
The onboarding stage is when new hires figure out how they fit in. It’s the time for them to learn what the company culture is and how they can contribute to the people they’ll work with.
Leaders must step up and guide them during this time. Your new hires may want to clarify job expectations, understand company goals, and see how they can effectively collaborate with their teammates.
This highlights the structure of your onboarding program. Employees want to fully understand your training and orientation to help them fit in and prepare for their new role.
Elevate New Hire Experiences Through Engaging Onboarding Practices
Now that you understand the essential aspects of onboarding, let’s look at some practices you may consider implementing.
1. Send new hires a welcome package.
While a simple idea, sending your new hires a welcome package can leave them with a positive first impression. Your gift package may include items they can use for work, such as notepads, pens, and water bottles.
You may also ask your teams to prepare short, handwritten notes that you can include in the package. This gesture can make the package more personal and heartwarming.
2. Prepare new hires for their onboarding.
Preparing new hires for their onboarding can help them feel more comfortable about starting their new job and meeting their new colleagues. Here are a few things you can do to ease their transition into the company.
- Provide a physical or digital copy of the employee handbook.
- Prepare timely schedules for the onboarding process.
- Regularly visit new hires and ask them about any questions or clarifications.
- Provide all necessary resources to help them understand company processes, events, structure, history, etc.
- Teach them all the tools and technologies needed to accomplish the organization’s tasks.
3. Make the process collaborative between departments.
To help your new hires feel more welcomed and adjust to their new environment quickly, ask for the involvement of various department leaders in the onboarding journey.
The leaders can briefly introduce the new hires to each department and provide them with a brief overview of how things work within their teams. This will give the new hires an idea of who to ask for help with specific matters in the office.
4. Make the first day fun and comfortable.
Let your new hires have an easy first day where they can have fun and be comfortable. Ensure all the resources are provided and ready for use, such as a computer, a desk, online accounts, and other specific tools they might need.
You may also organize a company-wide meeting or lunch to introduce your new hires to everyone. You may also assign someone suitable to guide them throughout the week and answer any questions they may have. What’s important is that your new hires won’t feel alone or isolated upon entering the company.
5. Organize a mentorship program.
A survey conducted by the Pew Research Center on 5,188 US adults found that only 44 percent are very satisfied with their training and development opportunities.³
Organizing a mentorship program for your new hires can show them that your organization is willing to invest in their growth from the beginning. You may also choose someone who can guide them in their career path.
6. Help new hires understand how they fit into the culture.
Your onboarding program should be inviting enough for new hires to make them want to be a part of your culture. Let your new hires feel they belong by teaching them about your purpose and values.
For example, if one of your values is innovation, you can make it a part of your onboarding to introduce them to the latest technologies. Teach them how these technologies can help them work better in the organization and how these tools positively affect the people around them.
7. Gradually introduce their new responsibilities.
No one wants to be overwhelmed by new responsibilities on their first day, so let your new hires take things slow. You may assign them little tasks on their first week or let them shadow a tenured employee with the same role to help them familiarize themselves with your processes.
You may want to check in on them at the end of each shift for at least a week. See how they are adjusting and what they think about the few tasks they have been assigned. If you think they are doing well already, you may proceed to increase the number of their responsibilities.
FIND THE RIGHT CANDIDATES THAT MATCH YOUR BUSINESS NEEDS WITH STRATEGIC SYSTEMS
Onboarding is about genuinely connecting with new hires. Make your employees feel they belong by building authentic connections with them from day one. Adding well-matched candidates to your team can elevate your work culture and business results. Let Strategic Systems help with your hiring process and bring high-quality candidates into your organization.
We can help you find the best candidates from entry-level to mid-level and senior management roles. Our team’s staffing expertise covers various industries, such as Information Technology, Government, and Financial Services. Get in touch with us today and start expanding your teams.
1. “Create an Exceptional Onboarding Journey for Your New Employees.” Gallup, www.gallup.com/onboarding-new-employees-perspective-paper. 5 Oct. 2023.
2. Wetherell, Emily, and Bailey Nelson. “8 Practical Tips for Leaders for a Better Onboarding Process.” Gallup, 12 Aug. 2021, www.gallup.com/practical-tips-leaders-better-onboarding-process.
3. Horowitz, Juliana M., and Kim Parker. “How Americans View Their Jobs.” Pew Research Center, 30 Mar. 2023, www.pewresearch.org/how-americans-view-their-jobs.