Employee Onboarding Process | 4 mins read

The Ins and Outs of the Employee Onboarding Process

Mary Kate Morrow

By Mary Kate Morrow

What is the Employee Onboarding Process?

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The employee onboarding process assimilates new hire employees into a business. A well structured onboarding program goes well beyond the initial employee orientation and first few months of employment.

While many companies rush through the onboarding process due to business needs, research shows that employee onboarding should be a long term initiative. In fact, a proper onboarding process increases employee retention by up to 50% over the first year and a half of employment.

When your business commits to providing new hires with the tools and training they need to succeed, employee engagement and productivity levels are increased. Beyond all of the benefits your business will receive, a great onboarding program helps employees feel valued.

Almost 75% of hiring managers and human resource professionals report that their onboarding program covers only up to the first month of employment. The most effective onboarding programs last long beyond the first months of employment, many experts agree that the onboarding process should last through the first year of employmen.

90% of employees decide whether they will stay in a new role within their first six months at your business. A longer and more comprehensive onboarding program demonstrates to your new hire that you are invested in their development and personal growth.

A structured onboarding process can make the difference between a new employee staying for a short amount of time or creating a long term prosperous career at your company. The best employee experience is one that effortlessly streamlines the onboarding process into employee development that continues until an employee leaves their role.

What Makes Up Employee Onboarding?

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With 1 in 25 employees quitting their new job due to an improper onboarding experience, establishing a great employee onboarding program is crucial to employee retention. The basics of the onboarding process include-

  1. Initial welcome- Make sure to welcome new employees correctly in order to create a first impression that is both positive and professional. Give new hires the opportunity to meet with staff members from different departments over their first few days or few months of employment.

    90% of what workers learn actually occurs through personal and collaborative experiences with co workers instead of through formal learning. Use this information to your benefit by connecting new employees with a talented co worker that can answer questions and introduce new hires to the rest of the office.

    New hires feel much more comfortable with a designated point of contact that is readily accessible, amicable, and knowledgeable.
  1. Team building- On or before their first day on the job, send out a welcome email to your new hire with important contact information listed. Informal social events can boost successful onboarding if your human resources department can provide those opportunities.

    A group lunch or after work happy hour can help new hires feel comfortable and encourage team building. Long term retention is much more likely when employees feel like a great match with their company culture and have opportunities to interact with their new team members outside the structured onboarding process.

  2. Workstation- The first day an employee gets to your office their workstation should already be set up. Not only does this give your new hire an excellent first impression of your company, it also helps employees feel invested in and valued.

    Employee onboarding software should be introduced to new hires on their first day of employment. A copy of your employee handbook and any company policies should be provided to your new hire either physically or digitally.

  3. Training- The first week that a new employee is on the job should be dedicated to training. Employee training should be customized to the specific role as much as possible.

    New hires should be encouraged to ask questions and linked with a designated mentor for guidance. Having a mentor readily available through the onboarding experience allows a new employee to get an insider view on your company culture and best acclimate to their new work environment.

  4. Feedback- An onboarding process best practice is to schedule one on one meetings between new hires and their supervisors. These meetings provide an opportunity for employees to give feedback regarding employee training including any suggestions they have to improve the process.

    These check ins allow supervisor to make sure new employees are adjusting to their roles properly. For the first few months of employment these check ins may be more informal and occur weekly or biweekly.

    More formal check ins should occur at the end of each month and at the very least once monthly. Many organizations use the 30, 60, 90 day milestones to check in with new hires especially if supervisors are too busy to provide check ins more frequently.

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