Onboarding: an investment that helps employees thrive

Ultimate Guide - Employee Onboarding header

Do you know what new employees think about your company? You may think you do…but do you really? What if you could easily identify your new employees’ first impressions of their early days on the job and use it to create the best conditions for them to thrive?

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Today, it’s increasingly important for employees to feel a connection with the company they work for. That’s because the faster new employees embrace the company culture, the sooner their performance and productivity increase. The impact is proven: time-to-contribution is reduced and new employees are more productive, according to the talent management solution company Taleo. So it’s critical for companies to constantly develop and improve their onboarding process to retain employees and increase new hire performance.

Employee onboarding is an investment, yes, but it’s also the foundation of a long-lasting relationship with the employer and the new employee. From day one, it’s essential to support employees and show how they can contribute to the overall company goals and metrics.

Combining a strong, cohesive onboarding process with a focused and relevant employee onboarding survey will give your company better insights, enable your teams to work more efficiently, and ultimately make you a more attractive employer to both current and future hires.

Benefits and structure of an effective employee onboarding process

Still not convinced? According to the talent management solution company Taleo, there are several benefits to analysing and improving a company’s onboarding process:

  • Reduce costs for onboarding forms, HR admin cost, lost productivity costs, or other costs caused by poor onboarding.
  • Improved job satisfaction and productivity
  • Increased loyalty to the company
  • Insights on how to improve the onboarding process.

Once it’s time to create or revisit your employee onboarding process, consider the following components suggested by Dr. Talya N. Bauer in her 2010 article Onboarding new employees: maximising success.

  1. Compliance. Educate the new employees about the basic policy and legal-related rules in the company.
  2. Clarification. Make sure the new employees understand their responsibilities and tasks in their new jobs.
  3. Culture. Formal rules are certainly important, but informing about informal rules and norms is at least as important. These informal rules are often overlooked because they are generally evident to the rest of the people in the company.
  4. Connection. Create an interpersonal relationship with the new employee and explain essential information to get the new employee up to speed, in order for the employee to start working.

A step-by-step timeline for onboarding new employees

A few things to keep in mind before, during, and after the employee onboarding process:

Before

Employer branding. Make sure your core values in the company are communicated and demonstrated to the new employees in order to create a connection with the company’s identity. Share these core values with the candidate before employment, to make sure they are the right person for the job. It’s also important that your company’s policies are defined here.

Offer online training. Make this part of the introduction before the employee’s first day of work. This will result in the new employee being more prepared for the first day, and the employee will have easier to adapt to the new tasks faster. This, in turn, will result in higher productivity and easier adaptation for the employee. The employee also gets a chance to feel more prepared and engaged for the first day at work.

Determine the stakeholders’ roles. The onboarding process involves many different stakeholders such as the IT & HR department, financial services, office manager, etc. Determine every stakeholders’ role in the process in order to make the onboarding activities as efficient as possible.

During

Call and congratulate again on the new job – have a coffee or follow-up meetings as soon as possible once an offer is signed.

Provide the new employee with a supportive mentor and the basic tools and knowledge to get started in their new role.

Celebrate the new employee’s hire and make sure that he/she knows that you are happy to have a new member of the team.

Keep the onboarding process going for up to a year to make sure the person feels comfortable and engaged at the company.

After

When the onboarding process is reaching its end, it is time to start preparing for the employee onboarding survey. An employee onboarding survey measures new employees’ perceived attitude and experience of the recruitment and onboarding process at the company. Ask relevant questions about the process and make sure the employee gets enough information to complete the survey.

After the answers are collected from the survey, you will hopefully find out if you need to keep or change something in your company’s onboarding process. You need to focus on the question: “How can you make your employees get an even better onboarding experience for the next year?” Focus on the main goal, which is that the employee will want to stay at your company and thrive.

When you have gotten the necessary feedback from the survey, it is time to start work on potential changes. Take the feedback into consideration and make the working processes a part of the company’s policy. If this is done properly, you have the essential building blocks for a more efficient onboarding process. Remember, your company will benefit from this long term.

Employees during on boardingSamples of employee onboarding survey questions

The questionnaire provided by Netigate’s employee onboarding process survey is a mixture of free-text options and statement questions, which ensures that you get as much important feedback as possible from the new employees. Netigate’s onboarding survey tool is thoroughly designed to improve your company’s onboarding process.

On a scale of 1 (Strongly disagree) to 5 (Strongly agree) rate the following statement question:

  • I am satisfied with the support in the introduction at the company
  • I feel welcome at the company
  • I am proud to work at the company
  • I see myself working for the company one year ahead

The answers that are on the lower part of the scale are the most important to attend to directly.

The power of surveys to capture essential feedback

This final step of the employee onboarding process is perhaps the most crucial. Your onboarding is simply not complete without a survey to evaluate its effectiveness.

With tools like Netigate’s onboarding surveys, you as an employer can find out how new employees experience their introduction at work. This is important to ensure that the onboarding is not only done correctly, but also so the new employee can anonymously tell if your new employee is not satisfied with the job introduction. If not, you can take steps to improve. Measure each step of the process in the survey; first impression, hiring process, the first days at work, first week and month, and up to one year on the job.

Different companies will need to use appropriate questions tailored to their relevant industries. But regardless of your sector, an employee onboarding survey will provide key insights into those crucial early days of an employees’ stint with your company.

If you want to evaluate and improve your company’s onboarding process and reduce employee turnover, let us know! Netigate will help you design an employee onboarding survey, tailored to your company’s needs.

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Joel Savilahti
Onboarding Manager
+44 (0)207 097 0375
joel.savilahti@netigate.se

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