Key Elements for a Successful Onboarding Program

Key Elements for a Successful Onboarding Program

Employee onboarding is a critical first impression and can significantly influence new hires’ performance and engagement. High turnover is costly and time-consuming, so making your onboarding program count is important!

Ensuring your onboarding is effective includes a variety of elements. Some of these include: Having senior team members engage with new employees, scheduling skills training sessions close to when needed, and creating an engaging onboarding process.

Create a Customized Plan

After all the time and energy that goes into recruiting, hiring, training, promoting and building a team, it’s frustrating when new hires don’t stay with an organization long. Not only does turnover cost money (recruiting, lost productivity), but it also impacts managers’ satisfaction and the length of customer relationships.

The employee onboarding process is one way to help new hires quickly connect with the company and build an understanding of their role, responsibilities and culture. It also sets the tone for their future employment and job performance.

Creating a personalized onboarding program makes employees feel valued. Start with a welcome email and phone call from a leader in the organization. Make it even more memorable by introducing them to their teammates.

The onboarding process doesn’t need to end at the 90-day mark. Create a learning roadmap and continue to provide support to help them get up to speed. For example, regularly hold introductory meetings with all departments the employee will work with. These can include a lunch meeting, virtual presentation or video recording from business leaders or their department heads.

Communicate Your Expectations

During onboarding, it is important to clearly explain what an employee needs to do in their new role. This includes setting expectations about how quickly they should become productive and telling them what projects they will work on. If expectations are unclear, it can lead to confusion and frustration in the new hire’s first few months at work.

While much onboarding content is out of your control, you can influence how the information is presented. Avoid large packets of paperwork, slideshows that could be more engaging and robotic speeches about workplace standards.

Instead, use fun videos, discussion boards and even an idea board to share this information with new hires. You can also assign a mentor or buddy who will be their point of contact if they have any questions. This will help them feel more connected to the team and company. Regular check-ins with a manager can also be beneficial, as they will be able to give more personalized feedback. This can help them feel supported and motivated throughout their first few months.

Invest in Training

Many companies spend significant time and resources on training new employees, but ensuring relevant content can often take a lot of work. A lack of communication around expectations, the timing and delivery methods of content, and the overall relevance of the training to day-to-day tasks can exacerbate this.

Providing interactive and engaging content can increase engagement and retention rates and help new hires feel confident they have the tools they need to succeed in their role. It is also important to provide easy access to the content so employees can revisit and review materials as needed.

Creating a support system is another way to help new hires feel confident and supported in their roles. By assigning mentors, buddy programs, and regular check-ins, new hires can have someone to turn to for questions and guidance. This can make them feel valued and appreciated, which is key to building a happy and motivated workforce. It can also reduce stress and anxiety, which is a major cause of turnover in the workplace.

Create a Support System

Creating a robust training program can help new hires learn the ins and outs of their job and contribute to the success of your business. Consider offering a variety of learning methods, including on-the-job training, workshops, online courses, and mentoring sessions to accommodate different learning styles. Set up a schedule for training and monitor new hires’ progress regularly so you can identify areas where they need further guidance.

8 Steps to Inclusive New Hire Onboarding | ATD

In addition to training, a comprehensive onboarding program should include a support system for new employees. This can consist of a mentor or buddy who can guide them through their new role, a clear job description that outlines responsibilities and goals, and clear communication about what to expect from the company.

In addition to supporting new employees’ professional growth, this can help them build relationships with their coworkers. Encourage team-building activities, social events, and group projects to foster community and help them feel like they belong.

Evaluate Progress

One of the most important aspects of a successful onboarding program is its ability to convey information and make new hires feel welcomed, valued and enthusiastic. This is especially true when the onboarding process is designed to foster long-term employee retention. Companies that have an engaging onboarding process retain 91% of their first-year employees and 58% of those for three years or more.

To evaluate the success of your onboarding program, focus on metrics such as time-to-productivity, retention rates and employee satisfaction. You can also use surveys to gather feedback from new hires and identify areas of improvement.

To get the most out of your onboarding program, ensure your team members have the proper training and resources to support new hires. Too often, onboarding is limited to logistical elements such as filling out paperwork and introducing new hires to their supervisors. However, by providing additional training and mentoring, your onboarding program can be a powerful tool for increasing employee productivity and morale.