Aleksa is a marketing specialist that specializes in driving business through digital, visual, and content marketing techniques, currently based in Los Angeles.
Pub: April 29 2022
Upd: February 3 2023
You've spent weeks scrutinizing dozens of CVs, carefully evaluating the most promising candidates, and crafting an irresistible job offer - and finally, you've hired the best talent to join your growing team. However, your coddling efforts have only begun.
How well do you believe your employees would deem your company's onboarding process? What kinds of activities does your onboarding include? Do you ask your new employees for feedback after their first week or month at the job?
As if onboarding wasn't challenging enough (as you'll get to learn in the next section), the pandemic has only accelerated the growing complexities of the onboarding procedure.
Guiding new employees through your company's processes and methodologies is even more difficult without in-person contact.
Challenges aside, welcoming remote employees isn't hard when you know employees' expectations and concerns.
Employee Onboarding: Do Companies Do a Good Job at Welcoming New Hires?
If studies are to be believed, stats are going against your favor.
Namely, Gallup's 2020 survey found that nearly 9 out of 10 employees feel like their company doesn't do a great job at onboarding. No wonder, as research suggests that an average onboarding experience consists of over 50 activities, most of which are paperwork.
Another disheartening data indicates that the productivity of new employees is around 25% in their first month, reaching its peak only after a full year on the job. Yet, inadequately organized onboarding affects not only employees' performance but also their satisfaction and motivation at work.
Ultimately, this negative first impression impacts employee retention and raises turnover, which is at an all-time high, as a third of employees leave their jobs within the first six months.
Corporate aftereffects of the pandemic, such as employees uncovering the comfort, convenience, and safety of working remotely, leave little room for companies to redeem their poor onboarding practices. On the other hand, employees began to highly value employers' endorsement of remote work.
4 Tips for Effective & Satisfying Onboarding Experience
Good onboarding is a win-win situation for your company and your employees. First impressions matter, so creating a structured and strategic - rather than administrative - onboarding methodology can help in boosting employee performance, morale, and satisfaction.
Here are some expert tips on creating an all-encompassing, not-overwhelming, and valuable onboarding experience for your remote employees.
#1 Plan Out Your Remote Onboarding Methodology
Successful onboarding starts even before your new employee's start date. Prior to them joining your team, you need to map out an onboarding strategy with your HR team and the new worker's manager.
Start the onboarding process by setting effective and achievable onboarding goals, such as meeting with project teammates or setting up their Trello board. These will help your new employee to faster contribute to your business, understand your company’s processes, and be more productive in the shortest period of time.
Make sure your remote onboarding strategy covers topics such as:
- What are the expectations regarding the new employee's responsibilities?
- What information should you share with the new employee, and how will you segment them?
- How does joining the team affect other team members' current workflows?
- Is the new remote employee given access to all project tracking, communication, and other essential working platforms?
- Does the new team member know whom to turn to when needing assistance?
These are only some basic onboarding matters to get off on the right foot; however, the most likely scenario is there'll always be new issues to handle as you go.
#2 Send Your New Remote Employee a Welcome Gift
One of the major pitfalls of remote work is employees feeling isolated from the rest of the team - and the team not regarding the remote worker as one of their own.
An easy and effective way to overcome this sentiment and make your new hires feel like an equal part of the team is by sending a welcome package. This way you can create a sense of belonging in the new workplace!
The gift needn't be anything more than the usual assortment of company swag. Sweatshirts, notebooks, mugs, or water bottles - all that matters is that the items are helpful, quality, look professional, and are designed with your company branding in mind.
A package like this will replace a hearty handshake that welcomes your new team member on their first day.
At the same time, your remote employee using your branded gift will help strengthen the bond between them and you as the employer. Remember - out of sight, out of mind.
#3 Assign a Buddy to Your New Remote Employee
In kindergarten, pairing up helps avoid kids getting lost during field trips; at remote work, pairing your old and new employees helps the new hiree not get lost - metaphorically.
According to research by HCI, nearly 9 out of 10 organizations report a quicker performance boost in new employees that went through a buddy program during their onboarding process.
A buddy system is easy to implement - you assign an experienced employee who'll act as a guide during the first few weeks or months to the new employee. The buddy's role is to check in regularly with the new teammate to ensure they're acclimating to the new position, performing their tasks, and following the company methodology.
Before adopting this onboarding system in a remote environment, ensure your buddies can communicate and track tasks effortlessly via a reliable team performance management tool. If you run a larger enterprise and employ dozens of remote employees, hop over to these guys to learn more about the perks of custom solutions for your company.
But don't rely solely on the assigned buddy; you should make a conscious effort to reach out to the new employees personally and strengthen their feeling of belonging to the team.
#4 Ask The Remote Employee for Onboarding Feedback
Encourage your new teammate to share their honest feedback on their onboarding experience.
Ask concise questions to uncover whether there have been any areas that you could improve, was there a learning gap to fill in the future, and how smooth their communication was with others.
Collecting feedback from your new remote employees will help improve the onboarding process for others and show the new teammate you value their opinion and care about their experience at your company.
Onboarding remote employees is challenging as your new teammates may have trouble with feeling isolated and disengaged from the rest of the team, company processes, and day-to-day happenings.
In such circumstances, your task is to encourage communication, welcome the remote workers' questions, and provide the teammates with a reliable sidekick who'll guide them through all processes.
Photo credit - Unsplash