Three Ways To Build an Effective Onboarding System


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An effective onboarding program will go a long way in ensuring that a new hire starts on the right foot. From the nitty-gritty processes, such as filling out paperwork and registering for a new email address to the in-depth training sessions, a strong onboarding program has the potential to set an employee up for success if done correctly. This includes utilizing the right tools, tapping into existing resources, and being overall sympathetic to the stress of starting in a new position. Luckily, there are plenty of ways in which companies can build out strong programs for their new employees.

Below are three ways that companies can create strong, lasting onboarding programs for their HR professionals and their employees.

Give employees a low-stress environment to learn company processes

The ultimate goal of an onboarding program is to give new employees the time and space to adjust to their roles at the company. Onboarding serves as a training ground, providing new hires with the best resources needed to succeed in their new position. If a company opts to skip onboarding and throw the new hire right into the mix, they risk the employee becoming overwhelmed and disorganized, feeling as if they are sinking with no lifeline. Onboarding gives employees the opportunity to learn how to meet the expectations of the company and properly function in their roles. Not only that, but onboarding also encourages new employees to prioritize productivity from day one. It’s been shown that companies with a strong onboarding process improve new hire productivity by over 70%.

Create agendas for the first few days to give new hires an idea of what to expect moving forward. Not only will this help them to feel more structured, but it will also provide them with an opportunity to ask questions based on the tasks laid out within the agendas. Giving employees an idea of what to expect in the day-to-day role is a great way to set clear expectations and set the new hire up for success. Consider implementing online programs such as Talent LMS or Docebo to automate training courses, which employees can view at their own pace. This offers a way to learn company procedures without having to attend time-consuming training sessions.

Consider streamlining processes through technology

Onboarding creates a hefty workload for both HR professionals and new employees alike. The average HR team spends around 130 hours a month managing onboarding processes. However, by utilizing modern HR technology, teams can significantly cut back the amount of time filing away paperwork and focus on acclimating the employee into their position.

From scanning submitted resumes to generating an offer letter, automated HR technology streamlines time-consuming processes. They also make the onboarding timeline easier for the employee, who instead of worrying about providing a voided check, can now upload a photo that includes the necessary information in its place. Not only that, but HR technology is often safer than traditional onboarding strategies. Filling out digital paperwork is much more secure than trading a packet of sensitive documents back and forth.

Create a feeling of connection to the company and to each other

It’s proven that employees who feel a connection to their companies’ values are more productive, contributive, and often stay for longer than those who lack feeling toward the purpose of the work they’re doing. A greater reason for a robust onboarding process is to introduce new hires to company culture and give them a chance to find a place for themselves amongst the hustle and bustle of starting a new job.

Dedicated onboarding allows for the growth of connections between a new employee and their team. Most HR professionals recognize the fear that comes with starting in a new position, so be sure to provide an opportunity for a new employee to engage with others in order to reduce employee anxiety. There are plenty of tech tools available to connect employees. Implement a messaging system, such as Slack or Microsoft Teams, so that teammates can reach each other easily. Schedule a time to play games together online, or bring in a guest speaker over Zoom.

All in all, a strong onboarding experience can set the tone for the experience a new employee will have while with the company. Prioritizing learning, asking questions, and getting to know teammates goes a long way in showing a new hire that the company cares about their wellbeing and wants them to have a positive experience. With strategic planning, useful HR technology, and an adaptable approach, organizations can effectively onboard new hires to result in productive employees who feel comfortable contributing to the overall success of the company.

Brian Anders
Brian Anders joined WorkSmart Systems in 2019 as director of human resources and has extensive experience in all aspects of HR within the service industry. His HR acumen includes employee relations, organizational training and development, project and talent management, payroll and recruitment. Brian is a graduate of Indiana University, and is SHRM-CP Certified with National SHRM and the Indiana State SHRM Chapter membership.


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