Top Tips for Creating an Effective Employee on boarding Program

Did you know that a great employee onboarding program will help you retain as many as 82 percent of your newly hired employees? When you’re running a business it is important that you’re able to keep your new hires and get them started with your company through your onboarding program.

Employee onboarding programs are meant to help get these new hires up to speed with their new settings and job duties as fast as possible. This helps them to feel comfortable and ready to become part of your corporate family. Alongside onboarding, researching ways to get employee feedback on websites like Qualtrics is a great way to fully understand new employee’s opinions! It might seem intimidating to put together an employee onboarding training program, but you’ve got this.

You’re in the right place to learn all of the industry’s top tips for designing onboarding programs for new employees. Continue reading to learn everything you need to know to put together a sterling employee onboarding program for your business today.

What Is an Onboarding Program?

An onboarding program is a vital part of getting your newly hired employees up to speed with your company as well as the tasks they’ll be expected to handle. It is also a great way to help these employees get acquainted with the tools and resources they’ll be using to perform their job duties.

The onboarding process is a huge part of retaining your employees, which is important for a number of reasons. A high turnover rate looks bad to people that would otherwise be interested in working for your company. In addition, if you’re not retaining your employees then you’re losing money and time on training them only to see them leave for a different opportunity.

While building a successful team and business requires finding the right individuals to perform necessary jobs, there is a lot more than that which goes into HR onboarding. It is important that you don’t get new employee orientation mixed up with onboarding as they’re very different.

Orientation involves routine tasks and required paperwork in order for the new employee to begin working with you. The onboarding process itself is much more in-depth and is aimed at helping the new hire understand your business’s culture and values. A good onboarding program will last up to 12 months and involve working with managers as well as other employees.

Things To Know for HR Onboarding

There are certain things to know before you start putting together an onboarding plan. You’ll need to know when onboarding will start with new employees after they’re hired and how long you want the onboarding process to last. You also need to think of what impression you want to leave on your new hires when they leave at the end of their first day working with you.

Another important thing to consider when putting together an onboarding program is what you want the new employees to learn and know about your organization’s culture and values. Figure out how you want them to learn and engage with those values and their work environment.

You’ll also need to consider the role that HR plays in onboarding for new employees. Will they be hands-on and involved, or will they hand the baton off to the managers and coworkers? How involved will their coworkers be with training them and welcoming them into the organization?

Setting the right goals for your new employees is also important. Know what goals you want to set and make sure that they’re realistic and attainable. You also need to come up with a viable way to gather data and feedback about the success of your onboarding program. This helps you determine if it is working and where improvements should get made.

Tips for Designing Onboarding Programs

There are many different things that you can and should do in order to put together the best onboarding programs for your new employees. These programs increase employee retention and are a sure way to help your organization grow and thrive. Here is a closer look at everything from employee onboarding software to plans for social integration.

Plan Pre-Onboarding Activities

One of the best ways to make new employees feel welcome and validated in their decision to work for you is by including them in pre-onboarding activities. This process speeds things up when it comes to getting them onboarded and makes their transition to their new job much smoother.

Some things that you should do between when they accept the job and when they start is to get some of the required paperwork out of the way. This makes their first day working at your organization much easier to process. It becomes stressful when there is an information overload during your first day on the job.

It is also a great way to boost the confidence of a new hire since they have time to mentally prepare for their first day with your company. This means they’ll come in with a positive attitude and excitement about their future working with you. It is one of the best ways to guarantee employee retention.

If you’re going to include pre-onboarding activities then you should focus on a few specific things. One great thing to include is the HR and tax paperwork the employee needs to complete. Most of this paperwork can get filled out online and digitally signed by the employee.

You should also send the new employee a digital copy of the employee handbook. This gives the employee the chance to go over the employee handbook on their own time and at their own pace. Another great thing to do that will take the stress off the new employee is sending them an onboarding checklist. That way they have a visual aid to see how far along the process they are.

Focus On More Than the Paperwork

While the paperwork is a necessary part of the new hire onboarding process, there is a lot more to it than that. The training and socialization aspects of onboarding are arguably more important than the paperwork.

The training aspect of onboarding will help the new employee get up to speed on the equipment and software they’ll use to perform their job duties each day. The socialization aspect of onboarding helps introduce the new hire to their managers and coworkers that they’ll see and work with on a daily basis.

Most new hires view the training aspect as the most important part of their onboarding process during the first week at a new job. Prioritize the training and socialization of your new hires with your onboarding programs.

Design Long-Term Onboarding Programs

You should also design your onboarding programs to last for at least 90 days. If possible, have your onboarding programs run for up to a year. The onboarding programs are put in place to try to help the new employee gain the skills and knowledge that they’ll need in order to find the most success at their job.

If the onboarding stops after only a few weeks then your new employee will start to feel like they’ve been thrown to the wolves. Make sure that your program continues training them on the skills and knowledge they’ll need in order to be successful.

Research shows that most new hires require as long as eight months to become proficient and productive at a new position or job. By making your onboarding programs run longer, you’re ensuring that your new hires have all of the support they need to grow and find success.

Schedule Check-Ins With New Hires

Job candidates and new hires ghosting companies is becoming more and more common. A great way to combat and prevent that is by having scheduled check-ins with new hires. A lot could happen between when the candidate accepts the job offer and when they’re supposed to have their first day.

By having scheduled check-ins, you’re keeping in touch with the new hire and letting them know that you’re excited for them to bring their skills and personality to the job. It also keeps them from accepting other job offers that come their way between the job offer and their first day with your company.

Make sure that you build scheduled check-ins with new hires into your organization’s onboarding process. This ensures that you won’t have your time or resources wasted. If a new hire gets a promotion at their old job and decides to stay, you’ll be aware of that and have plenty of time to find a different candidate worthy of the position.

A great strategy is by sending the new hire a welcome email or giving them a phone call just to check in with them. It will also give you a chance to address any new questions that they have for you as well as any concerns they have.

Create an Onboarding Checklist

Everyone loves checking things off of lists. It is a therapeutic and fun part of putting together a list. New hires for your organization are no different. By providing them with an onboarding checklist, you’re giving them a road map to let them know how far along with the process they are.

It also builds their confidence and creates a positive impression because they know they’re getting closer to where they want to be with each item that they check off. It empowers them and provides them with the energy they need in order to meet and exceed the goals they’re setting for themselves.

Best of all, an onboarding checklist helps managers and new hires stay on the same page about what they’ve learned and what they still need to do.

Avoid Information Overload

There are a ton of things that a new hire needs to learn when they start a new job. Despite that, they don’t need to learn all of it in one day or even in one week. A good idea when designing an onboarding program is to avoid overwhelming new hires with too much information or too much responsibility.

It takes most employees close to a year to know everything that they need to know for success in their position. Design a program that gives new hires the most important information at the beginning. From there you’ll build on top of that foundation with the other important information they need in order to do their job.

Plan For Social Integration

The first day at a new job is sometimes scary and riddled with anxiety. You don’t know anyone that you’ll work with or how you’ll get along with them. That is why it is vital that you include a social integration aspect into your onboarding program.

One of the best ways to improve employee satisfaction and productivity is through positive relationships with employees and coworkers. Having friends that you work with is a vital part of having a healthy, fun, and positive environment at work. It will make your employees excited to come to work each day.

Ask For Feedback

A good company is always looking for ways to improve. Your onboarding program shouldn’t be left out of that. One thing that people forget to do is to get feedback about the onboarding program from previous new hires.

Getting feedback gives you a much better idea of your program’s strengths. It will also help you identify weaknesses that you possibly weren’t aware of. You’ll get the opportunity to build on the things that are working well with your program while also improving the areas that need work.

Finding out what new hires liked about the onboarding process is the best way to retain future new hires and give them the best introduction to their new job and organization possible.

Upgrade Your Onboarding Program Today

A huge part of retaining your new employees is providing them with a strong and comprehensive onboarding program. This program should last at least eight months and provide your new employees with all of the information and support they need. You should also ask for feedback as a way to continue improving your onboarding program into the future.

For more helpful and insightful articles on a wide range of topics, be sure to check out more of our blog.

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Dyka Smith
Dyka Smith is a content marketing professional at Inosocial, an inbound marketing and sales platform that helps companies attract visitors, convert leads, and close customers. Previously, Dyka worked as a marketing manager for a tech software startup. She graduated with honors from Columbia University with a dual degree in Business Administration and Creative Writing.

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