| 14 July, 2020 | 5 Min Read

How to Create the Best Employee Onboarding Experience

Learn the benefits your company stands to gain from having a great onboarding experience. Also, find out how to wow their employees during the onboarding process with examples from big companies. 

A great onboarding experience sets a positive tone for an employee’s journey in your organization. However, many companies are more interested in the process than giving their new hire a memorable onboarding experience. This act of negligence by companies leads to failure to connect employees to their organization emotionally.

A survey by Jobvite reveals that 30% of job seekers left a job within the first 90 days, because the company’s culture and the day-to-day job does not meet their expectations. This result shows that it is time for companies to take the onboarding process more seriously as the war for talent gets stiffer.

To help you, we have researched and come up with ways on how to build an onboarding experience that impresses newcomers. But before that, let’s look at the benefit of creating a great onboarding experience.

Benefits of building a great onboarding experience

Here are five benefits companies stand to gain from building a great onboarding experience:

  • Higher talent retention: According to research, companies with a robust onboarding process improve new hire retention by 82%. This result indicates that early focus on the company’s culture and frequent check-ins make new employees likely to develop loyalty towards your organization and stay long-term.
  • Enhanced employment branding: Employees who go through a negative onboarding process are unlikely to recommend their employer. On the other hand, an engaging onboarding experience will leave new employees with a positive view of their company. Such employees are likely to recommend their employers on sites like Glassdoor.
  • Better job performance: New hires need time to settle down before they can start producing desired results. Onboarding them properly will speed up this process by helping them adapt quickly to their environment, learn about the company, their co-workers, and job responsibilities, which reduce time-to-productivity.
  • Stronger company culture: Companies that invest in a great employee onboarding process find it easier to introduce their new hire to their organizational culture. By sharing information about their core values and mission early, such companies will be able to help new hires feel more culturally aligned.
  • Higher job satisfaction: Putting new employees through a well-structured and interactive onboarding program goes a long way towards engaging them. It creates an emotional bond between new employees and the organization. As a result, such employees are more committed to company goals.

Now that we know the benefits of creating a great onboarding experience, here are tips on how to wow your newcomers.

5 onboarding best practices to help new employees feel at home

1. Start before the first day

Many Human Resource experts believe that a proper onboarding process begins before a new employee’s first day. Engaging an employee before they start working will show that your organization values them, and you are excited to have them work for you.

An example of a company that starts onboarding its employees before their first day is Warby Parker. The organization sends a digital welcome pack to new employees immediately after hiring them. This package includes the Employee Handbook, information on the company’s history, and what the employee should expect on the first day, first week, and the first month of work.

Companies can take the Warby Parker approach to help new employees get familiar with the workplace before joining. You could provide links to the company’s videos, provide information about your team, or give them books that preach values similar to that of the company’s.

Grove HR - How to create the best employee onboarding experience

2. Make their day one count

Employees may feel uncomfortable during their first day at work. Creating a productive first day will boost employee engagement, reduce the feeling of discomfort and help them hit the ground running immediately.

Companies can follow the Percolate onboarding example by having a structured program for new employees’ first day. Some of the plan’s onboarding checklist includes showing employees to their workstation, providing them with all the tools needed, assigning tasks that involve meeting up with managers, employees, and going through the company’s documents.

In addition, companies may assign an employee to new hires. This idea, used at Google, will help the new employee have someone to walk them through the company’s culture, become their work friend, and help them acclimate to their new working environment. This person will also help them with any questions and problems they have and help them connect with the company.

3. Assign a mentor

The first 90 days of employment are crucial in an employee’s journey into an organization. Aside from not grasping what is expected of them, new hires may find it difficult to fully understand how their role fits into the organization’s goals. To help your employees assimilate faster into your workplace culture, you should consider assigning a mentor to them during the onboarding process.

The primary purpose of mentors is to guide the new hires through their early days in the organization and outline the company’s expectations. The mentors will also train, coach, and support the employees to reach their full potential.

4. Hold an orientation

One of the best ways to wow new employees is to organize an event that welcomes your organization. This event will serve as an excellent opportunity for employees to know more about the organization, understand the company’s story, and meet their colleagues as well as other new hires like them.

Companies can take a cue from the Microsoft approach. The software company holds a New Employee Orientation event weekly. During these events, the newcomers are addressed by the CEO via a prerecorded message. Information about the company’s goals and visions are shared with the employees. Also, the new hires get to learn about their perks such as stock options, health insurance, and paid vacation.

5. Leverage technology in the process

Using manual methods for onboarding can make the process long and unpleasant for both the HR team and the new hires. Worse, it exposes both parties to errors that may be detrimental in the long run. To mitigate this problem, companies have to adopt an HRIS to build a well-structured onboarding process.

An HRIS offers a smooth and seamless onboarding process that will positively affect the employee experience. It allows HR professionals to customize onboarding flow, assign checklists to responsible team members, and track pending tasks. An HRIS empowers your hires to submit documents, change personal information, or look through materials on their own time.

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Get started with our free New hire launchpad template

Ready to create the best onboarding experience possible? You can download our free New hire launchpad right here. This free template will help you successfully onboard your new hire. It includes sections set aside with tips included to help introduce your new hire to the team, its goals, and his/her contribution to helping them achieve their goals.

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