Feb 23, 2018
How did your onboarding experience go? Could it have gone better? Successful onboarding improves retention by 25% and employee performance by 11%. Have the right plan in place for managers as well as new hires. Help new hires feel welcome by pairing him or her with a buddy during onboarding. Implement goals for their 30-60-90 check-ins to help them stay focused. Onboarding is the last step in hiring, but the first step in ensuring long-term retention.
1. Get Managers Ready
Managers don’t find extensive, annual onboarding training helpful. Instead, send a simple reminder and a short checklist the week before a new hire arrives. This way, managers feel their actions are voluntary. Managers should focus on establishing open communication with new hires. Make sure new hires know how to reach managers and the best time to do so. This will help new hires feel welcome and more comfortable for their 30-60-90 check-ins.
2. Show New Hires their New Digs
All employees should be well-versed in corporate values, compensation, and benefits. No one more so than your latest hirees. However, the social side of work is one that is often overlooked during onboarding. Don’t forget to introduce everyone to their new colleagues. A simple introduction isn’t enough. Spark up a conversation. New people need to get to know their team. It’s the only way to learn the company culture. Studies show 76% of new hires said socialization is the most important aspect of onboarding. Where is the weekly team meeting? When is the team’s next potluck? What should be expected during performance reviews? Pairing a new hire with a buddy could help the onboarding process go smoother too. These are just as important as the corporate-level information to a new hire.
3. Play Goalie
Sometimes new employees don’t know what they’re doing. That’s okay! Set up goals with them to keep them engaged and on track for check-ins. The first 30 days should focus on meeting their team and getting to know company culture. Schedule one-on-ones with your newest employees and the members of their team. After 60 days, focus on collaboration and job training. After 90 days, progress into independent projects. These goals will give new hires a great starting point for their check-ins.
4. Continuous Onboarding
Onboarding shouldn’t end after a day or even a week. Check-ins after 30, 60, and 90 days are critical for a new hire’s retention. It usually takes 8-12 months for new hires to be as proficient as their colleagues. Check-ins keep up open communication and help solve any problems early on. Give new hires a calendar of when these check-ins will be so they know what to expect.
Onboarding is the least tracked process in HR, but the first 90 days are the most important for new hire retention. Establish open and effective communication from day one to help new hires stay engaged and meet their goals. Onboarding is really about integrating new hires into company culture and feeling like a part of the team. Don’t let onboarding stop abruptly just because the program is over. Continuously check in and maintain open communication for higher performance and retention.