You’ve reviewed dozens of resumes and gone through a few rounds of interviews to find the perfect candidate for a job opening. The person accepted your offer, so now it’s time to go through the onboarding process.
Before you do the same thing you’ve done, consider how to improve it. That way, you can give your new hire the best possible experience and set them up for success.
Read on to learn more.
Review Employee Exit Interviews
Before you start working on your onboarding process, take a look at answers from recent employee exit interviews. Ideally, look at the answers from the person who left the position you need to fill.
As you look at different interview answers, look for trends. For example, maybe multiple employees said they liked receiving one-on-one help when they first started.
Or maybe a few employees wished they had more guidance when learning new tasks. You can use this information to prepare for onboarding your new employees to give them a better experience.
Prepare Before the First Day
Once you hire employees, you should prepare for their onboarding before their first day. Start organizing paperwork, such as tax forms, employee contracts, and the employee handbook.
Consider what supplies the new employee will need, such as a computer or other office supplies. Order those items and set them up before the new worker gets to the office.
You should also set them up with a new phone extension and a company email. That way, everything will be ready for them to get to work or training when they start the job.
If you didn’t outline goals and expectations in the job description, do that now. You can make a list of goals that apply to all positions, such as to be on time and to be courteous to others.
However, you might also want to outline some goals for the new hire’s specific role. For example, if they’re going to be a sales representative, you may outline sales quotas or processes they’ll need to follow.
As you come up with goals, think about goals in general as well as for during the employee onboarding and training process. That way, the employee will know what they need to do to start their job successfully.
Communicate With the New Hire
As soon as you decide to hire someone and they accept the offer, maintain communication. Especially if someone is leaving another job, they may not be able to start for a couple of weeks.
However, you can send the new hire emails with information to help them look forward to their first day. Human resources, the employee’s supervisor, and the company CEO can all send messages.
When the new hire gets to the office, they may already feel like they know a few people, even if they haven’t met. Communicating with the employee may also help them with their nerves before the job, so they may feel better on their first day.
Send the Hire What You Can
Along with sending welcome notes, send the new hire as much paperwork as you can. For example, you can email them tax forms and a copy of the employee handbook.
That way, the hire will be able to review all of those documents on their time. You won’t have to worry about spending a few hours on these forms when the new worker comes in for the first time.
They also will have as much time as they need to read over contracts and other data. You may make time to review the documents and to answer any questions the person has, but that won’t take as much time.
Use Onboarding Software
An easy way to send new employees their paperwork is to use employee onboarding software, such as WorkBright. A good onboarding program will house all of the files you need.
That way, you won’t have to search through your computer to find what you need. And you won’t need to spend time scanning the documents or making print copies and using up paper.
The new employee can create an account with the software to access the documents from home. They can sign everything virtually, so you won’t use as much paper, and you can save time on looking for what you need to send.
Implement Other Automations
Along with employee onboarding software, consider other ways to automate the onboarding process. Maybe you know that the new employee will be taking over the schedule of someone who left.
In that case, you can replace the names in your employee scheduling program. All you’ll have to do is print or email the schedule to the new worker so that they have a copy.
You may also add the new hire to employee newsletters so that you don’t have to send those emails separately. The more you can automate, the more time you’ll be able to save, so you can spend more time answering questions or working with the new hire.
Prepare Existing Employees
Before the new worker’s first day, prepare the current employees they’ll be working with. Make sure the current employees know what you expect of them regarding training and other responsibilities.
If the hire will affect someone else’s work, let that employee know. Then, they can prepare for a change in their schedule or any other shift to how they work.
Of course, you can also ask current employees to be nice to the new person. Everyone will have to adjust to the change, so be flexible with both the new employee and the others on their team.
Make sure the current employees know they can come to you if they have problems adjusting. Then, you can make everyone feel like a valuable part of the team.
Create a Schedule
If you don’t have an employee onboarding schedule already, create a schedule for the new hire. Then, you’ll know what they need to do for their first day or week.
You can send the employee a copy of their schedule before they come in so that they know what to expect. The schedule can be as open or as detailed as it needs to be depending on the training and other things the new employee will have to do.
Having a schedule will help everyone prepare for the first few days or weeks the worker is on the job. You can also make sure the training won’t interrupt other workers, so they can keep the team running.
Make Training Engaging
Another essential part of improving your onboarding process is to update the training. Maybe your former employees said the training materials were boring and hard to understand.
That’s a great reason to make sure the training materials are engaging for your new hire. You can incorporate a few different training tactics to help the employee learn the company’s processes.
But try to include things like videos or pictures, which can be more interesting than text alone. If you’re hiring a group of people to do the same job, you may want to host a group training session where people can ask questions.
Personalize What You Can
When you hire employees, it can be easy to give everyone the same exact training. You may have basic training materials that make it easy to teach new people your processes in one way.
However, people can learn in a few different ways. If you have the resources, personalize the training process so that employees can learn in a way that works for them.
Maybe you download a transcript of a video training for someone who learns better by reading. Or perhaps you let the new employee shadow an existing worker to see what their new job involves.
Get Them Working Soon
A good onboarding process will get new employees working as normal as soon as possible. They may still need to review training materials after a few days.
However, the longer it takes before they start doing their job, the easier it will be for the employee to get bored. Even if they can’t do everything, they should be able to do a few tasks after a bit of training.
You can always have a manager or coworker watch the new employee do certain tasks. That way, the person with experience can verify the new person is doing everything correctly, and the new hire can learn by doing.
Order in Lunch
On the employee’s first day, consider ordering lunch for the whole team. That way, the employee won’t have to worry about packing anything, so they can focus on their tasks.
Ordering lunch for the team also gives everyone a chance to get to know the new worker and vice versa. Employees can connect over food, and they may learn new things they wouldn’t otherwise learn.
If you want to do this, ask the new employee ahead of time about their favorite foods or restaurants. Order from their favorite place, and you can make them feel at home, and they can look forward to their first day.
Assign a Contact
When onboarding the best employees, assign someone to be that new hire’s point of contact. This person could be their supervisor or someone else working in the same position.
You may have someone from human resources be the point of contact as well. Either way, assigning a contact will give the new employee someone to email or call whenever they have questions.
Make sure the contact knows their role, so they can keep an eye on their inbox for messages. Having a contact can make the employee feel better about being at work, and they can get answers to any issues as soon as they arise.
Whether you’re the point of contact or not, you should expect plenty of questions from the new worker. You could give them the most comprehensive handbook and the best training materials.
However, it’s easy for people to forget what they learned, and they may have missed a section in the handbook. Plus, there may be tasks that come up that the training and handbook don’t cover.
Make sure your new employee feels comfortable asking questions about the job. Ask all current employees to not judge the new person and to answer their questions when possible.
Check in Regularly
It can be easy to think the onboarding process is over once a new hire completes training. For the most part, they will settle into their job, but you should still check in regularly.
Ask the employee how they’re doing and if they have any questions about the technology you use other things. Remind the employee that you’re grateful they’re working for you, and tell them to come to you with any problems.
You want to make sure the employee settles in and that they feel good about their job. That way, you won’t have to find employees to replace that person if they leave after a few months because they didn’t feel welcome.
After a few months, you won’t have to check in as often. But be sure to keep an open door and be willing to talk with all employees if they have issues so that you can resolve them.
Ask the Employee Their Thoughts
Once an employee completes the onboarding process, ask them to meet with you. Come up with a list of questions regarding the different steps, such as the communication before the first day.
You can ask the employee if they felt the training prepared them well enough for their role. Other questions can cover their first day and their first few experiences working with customers.
Keep a record of that employee’s answers, and do this whenever you hire employees. That way, you can review the answers and make the onboarding process easier the next time.
How Will You Improve Your Employee Onboarding Process?
Having a good onboarding process is critical if you want to hire and retain your best employees. Be sure the process starts well before the worker’s first day and continues for as long as necessary.
That way, the employee will be able to learn what they need to so that they can do their job. And you can make them feel good and reinforce what they’re doing.
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