The value of onboarding
Posted by Jane on May 28, 2018
When you have a vacancy, you probably spend a lot of time and effort on the recruitment process – job descriptions, adverts, sifting through applications, interviews, maybe some technical tests. But have you ever been in a situation when you thought that you’ve got the right person, only for them to change their mind within the first few weeks in the job? Or not turn up at all?
What happened? You know your recruitment was flawless. But what about your onboarding?
Our survey says…
The CIPD cites a recent survey of office workers that threw up the following results:
- 41% had resigned from a job within the first six months due to either being made to feel unwelcome, not liking the organisational culture, or simply not getting along with the manager.
- 50% said the job was what they’d been led to believe.
- 37% of respondents admitted that they had accepted a job offer then changed their minds before even starting.
- 48% said their change of mind was due to a better financial offer elsewhere.
- 30% cited either poor or no follow-up from the employer or a bad experience with the organisation between job offer and start date.
- Even those who’d stayed in the job weren’t entirely impressed: 45% said they’d heard nothing from their present employer between job offer and start date.
Advantages of onboarding
Onboarding is simply the process of integrating a new employee into the organisation. As you can see from the survey results, it can be poor or non-existent. Yet, when done well, it carries a number of potential advantages:
- New employees are more engaged and enthusiastic when they start.
- Employees are likely to stay in the post longer.
- They are much more likely to fit in with your culture and ways of working (there are no surprises on day one).
- They ‘hit the ground running’ and perform better sooner.
- Teams and managers are happier (because new employees need less direct support).
Good onboarding tips
Want to know how to onboard well? Try some of the following:
- Keep in contact: Don’t leave your new recruit hanging, stay in touch, include them in relevant communications (emails to their new team, company announcements, etc.) Depending on your culture, make it friendly, make it welcoming – make them look forward to their first day in this new amazing workplace.
- Tell everyone else: Who else needs to know about the new person? Their colleagues. Announce it to the team, tell them who the new recruit is and what they’re going to be doing. Big them up a little – tell them just why their new colleague was chosen. Encourage everyone to connect on LinkedIn, etc.
- Send information: Not everything has to wait for day one. You’ve probably got a lot of info that you need a new hire to absorb, so if it’s written down, send it to them in advance. Let them get a feel for the organisation before they walk through the door.
- Jargon: Every company has its own gobbledygook, its own acronyms, jargon, verbal shorthand and way of speaking. Share it so the new recruit doesn’t feel like such a newbie when they arrive.
- The ‘rules’: Every company also has its own way of doing things, its own culture. Think about how you run meetings, sign off from emails, communicate with colleagues and customers, etc. Tell them the rules in advance and they won’t be ruffling feathers accidentally.
- Details: Think about all the tiny details that your employees need to know: how the phone system works, when are the breaks, where’s the photocopier/printer, and so on. Also, if they need a security pass, a username to login or a car parking space, don’t wait until the morning they arrive to sort it out.
Recruitment may be expensive and time-consuming, but onboarding is arguably the most important step when taking on new staff – don’t trip up.
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