Employee onboarding is the process of integrating new hires into the company and making them feel welcome in the team. While companies had, over the years, started digitising several parts of the onboarding process, remote onboarding received the fillip it needed during the pandemic, when companies pivoted from a mostly offline onboarding to a 100 per cent online onboarding. Onboarding has always been a crucial business function. A study found that 69 per cent of employees are likely to stay with a company for at least three years if the onboarding is done right.
Onboarding is a journey
There was a time when onboarding started after the candidate joined the company and used to be a week-long affair. It involved a series of staid presentations and mostly one-way communications by the HR department, finance and business heads, and in some cases, CEOs.
Cut to the present; onboarding now starts even before the candidate’s first day at office and ends only a few months or even up to a year after the candidate has been with the organisation.
The Gen-Z (roughly born in the years 1996 to 2012) is the latest wave of professionals entering the workforce and their demands from their work are different from that of the previous generations. To keep Gen-Z employees excited about their new workplaces, organisations need to have clear communication plans in place. Organisations must distinctly convey their vision and how these new employees fit into it. Not communicating well with Gen Zers could be a recipe for disaster, leading to demotivated employees who eventually quit and jump ship.
Focus on the human touch
The initial months after joining an organisation can be exciting as well as overwhelming, even for seasoned professionals. Add to that, the stress of employees who would have joined the organisation during the pandemic and did not have a chance to interact with their colleagues in person.
To mitigate these challenges, managers must reach out to employees as soon as they accept job offers, and engage with them frequently, setting clear expectations on the work required of them. An onboarding buddy system could be rolled out for all the new hires to help them ease into the organisation. The key is to maintain the human connection, make employees feel a part of the org-family and bring a sense of camaraderie, despite the isolation!
Choose the right tech tools
The pandemic has pushed companies over the technology tipping point and accelerated digitisation in all areas; from internal operations, to customer and supply chain interactions. The adoption of technology makes the onboarding processes smooth and seamless. No wonder technology has made inroads into several aspects of onboarding; be it orientation, constant communication during the pre-boarding stage, first-day experiences, training and assessments, or goal setting and expectation management. Given that technology is the future of onboarding, organisations should be willing to embrace it to navigate the new workplace and be future-ready.
Background screening is vital
Finding the right and the most qualified candidate for a post is certainly no walk in the park for recruiters. Even after the candidate is selected, companies must not fail to perform a thorough background check of the candidate during the pre-boarding stage, even if this step is a laborious process. When the job market is difficult, several candidates do not hesitate to overstate educational qualifications or enhance their job histories. In fact, a survey done by Checkster, a reference checking company, found that 78 per cent of candidates admitted they did or would consider misrepresenting themselves on their application. Background checks also serve the purpose of vetting the information provided by potential candidates. What needs to be kept in mind is that your employees’ past history can speak volumes on their success and fit in your organisation.
When companies get the onboarding of their new hires right, it is an affirmation to the new hires that they made the right choice in deciding to join the organisation. Global analytics and advice firm Gallup found that only 12 per cent of employees strongly agree that their organisation does a great job onboarding new employees.
As we look into the future, it seems quite apparent that along with work, onboarding is also set to become hybrid — with certain processes that will remain best done in person while others are done online. With drastic changes in the world of work, onboarding is bound to undergo several reinventions as companies get innovative in their attempts to nurture and retain top talent. The good news is that in the new world of work, introduction of the right kind of technology and an increased focus on wellbeing herald a better future than we have known before.
HirePro customises the onboarding experience as per a company’s needs. HirePro’s SaaS-based platform automates the post-offer engagement and ensures adherence to compliance guidelines. Write to firstname.lastname@example.org for further information on customising your onboarding process.