Onboarding is a costly process, so you want your new hires to be prepared and excited to stay. Your new employee will be working closely with your team, you want to make sure they connect well. Its especially important they are incorporated well into the role in their first few weeks.

Why is Onboarding Important?
Retention
Ensuring a successful onboarding process can lead to much higher staff retention. First-year staff turnover is incredibly high- responsible for 34% of turnover according to the 2017 Retention Report.
Employees have been found to be 60% more likely to stay with a workplace for more than three years if the company uses a structured onboarding process.
An effective onboarding period shows an increase in the likelihood of the employee's engagement over time.
 
A study showed that adequate onboarding increases employees on driving performance and engagement by up to 20%.
 
Corporate Culture
Retention effects productivity in the workplace. Ensuring a happy hire can correlate to the achievement of objectives. Staff turnover leads to low employee morale. As absenteeism leads to remaining employees experiencing increased workloads. Increased responsibilities result from a lack of adequately trained staff causing increased stress and anxiety.

In addition to existing employees feeling the brunt of staff turnover, new employees may also be under increased stress. New hires may be deprived of the resources necessary to enable their adequate transition into their new role.

Starting new employees off on the wrong foot impacts the success of their career with their new employer. Here’s why a proper onboarding experience is crucial to a productive and long term work relationship. Continuation of high staff turnover can result in an inability to attract quality talent over time.

Efficiency

Studies show effective onboarding increases the ability and speed at which an employee will positively contribute to an organisation. Increase productivity and shortening the time for an employee to perform at their peak.  A study by Egon Zehnder’s online survey showed 60% of new hires believed that it took them six months to fully maximise their impact in their role. Where 20% of those surveyed said it took more than nine months.

Here’s how to make sure your new joiners and the team will kick off well:
 
#1. By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail

A first day, week or month of your new hire is doomed to go wrong when you don’t prepare.

Research undertaken by Google found that a “reminder alert” email sent to the hiring manager can reduce the new hire’s time to reach their full potential of productivity by a full month. A 25% decrease in wasted potential. It’s as simple as that. Good preparation doesn’t just include setting up an agenda, getting an email account ready and arranging that company pass. You also need to spend some time on preparing your team for the arrival of the new team member.

For example: introduce the new hire, explain how you expect the new hire to fill a role and ask the team to save some time for training their new co-worker. This way, you’ll make sure the team knows what to expect, instead of leaving them in the dark.

#2. Crowdsource things to work on

When the new person is replacing someone else, it’s highly likely a handover has been done. However, they’re always more things to be done you might not even be aware of. Sit down with the team and ask around if they have any ideas on how to fill the role for the new hire, or if they need help with a project. Furthermore, a new team member comes with new (additional) skills and talents, and after adding these to the team it could make more sense to re-divide tasks a bit.

#3. Buddy up

Nobody likes to be the new kid. By pairing up your new hire with a team member, or by letting them shadow one, they won’t feel alone and will have someone turn to when needed. Alternatively, a hire them both   is a great way to buddy up new candidates and leads to “Increased productivity and business impacts.” At the same time, your new hire will get the right practical training, next to your carefully composed onboarding program. Win, win! Be sure to involve your team member before onboarding the new hire, as they need the time to prepare as well. Otherwise, they might be cut up in difficult calls and meetings.

#4 Schedule and include in-person meetings

Onboarding must be a continuation of activities over a significant period of time. A single day of onboarding has been shown to reduce retention rates. “4% of new hires decide after the first day that they are sure they want to stay with their current company.”

Participating in team or project meetings may ask a bit much from your recent joiners, but that doesn’t mean they should be excluded. Let him or her join to get an understanding of how your team run projects.  As well as the type of people your new hire will be working with.

Emphasize that they are welcome to contribute and provide a new perspective on things, even though they are new to the company.

#5 Have fun

Having planned a fun activity is a great way to make the new employee feel welcome, and to bond with your team. Try to organise a team lunch, stop an hour early to have some drinks, or host your monthly team brainstorm out of the office once. Instead of trying to fit all paperwork and necessary training into their first week, try to have fun and keep things relaxed and motivating.   

Onboarding for longevity

It's clear how important adequate onboarding is to ensure the longevity of the new hire. In addition the employee's job satisfaction it is also critical to ensure maximum efficiency. Investing the time to integrate the new hire into the role is an investment in their career and the ability of the business to maximise potential.

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