talent

Onboarding:
How to keep your new recruits

By Alex Tullio, CEO
on June 12, 2019
talent

Onboarding:
How to keep your new recruits

By Alex Tullio, CEO
on June 12, 2019
Getting a successful candidate to sign your employment contract doesn't mean you've won the war for talent - far from it.
Nearly one in four new hires quit their job before their first 12 months is up, leaving Australian businesses more than $4bn worse off from loss of productivity and recruitment costs. That's damage to the bottom line in a big way!
These statistics point to an urgent problem
The fact is, many employers are struggling to make their onboarding process work for them. They're failing to make a good first impression and are unable to integrate new hires into the workplace.

Contrast this to what we know can happen when an organisation taps into the power of effective onboarding: your retention goes up by 50% and you've got happier new hires who are 54 percent more productive.
Clearly, these are compelling reasons to implement strong and consistent strategies in this domain.

So how well is onboarding working for your organisation and new recruits?

If there's room for improvement, then perhaps it's time to pause and reflect. There are three success factors that drive effective onboarding.
Onboarding as a longer commitment
The first success factor concerns the length of the process – is it long enough to be effective?

Research by the Aberdeen Group and Bersin shows that an onboarding process should ideally last between six months to a year, depending on the complexity of the organisation and the nature of the job. This makes sense when you consider the finding from Harvard Business Review that it takes an employee around eight months to reach peak productivity. However, the average length of onboarding programs last only three months, meaning new hires are often left to "sink or swim".

Some organisations mistakenly believe orientation is the same as onboarding too.

Orientation typically lasts up to a week and comprises of activities like filling out paperwork, meeting immediate supervisors and teams, getting set up on IT networks and completing mandatory training. Onboarding on the other hand, is the ongoing process of integrating new joiners into their roles through longer-term activities like drawing up development plans, providing mentoring programs, checking in and getting feedback, encouraging additional learning and organising social networking events.

While orientation is obviously important, it is these longer-term activities that foster retention of key information, acculturation and relationship development between the new employee and the team.
Emphasising the human experience
The second success factor concerns human feelings – does your onboarding process recognise the emotions that come with integrating into a new workplace?

For example, new hires often feel anxious about starting a new job. So engaging them by checking in and answering questions before their first day can go a long way to calm their nerves.

Once their new work journey begins, the focus of onboarding shifts to bringing clarity because a clear understanding of the job can lower feelings of uncertainty. New employees need to know:

  • Who they'll report to and work with;
  • What their responsibilities are;
  • What training is available;
  • What performance goals and expectations there are;
  • How and when they'll be evaluated, and
  • What the feedback process is.

The availability of managerial support makes all the difference in this part of the journey. In fact, a LinkedIn survey found 96 percent of new employees felt one-on-one time with their direct manager was crucial to their integration experience.

Onboarding activities should also make new joiners feel valued and respected.

    Rather than treating the process as purely an exercise of assimilation, organisations must get to know their new recruits, by inviting them to share their goals and vision as well as providing opportunities for feedback.
    Finally, the onboarding process should tap into the human need to be social. Buddy or mentor programs can work well to encourage friendships between colleagues. According to Urbanbound, 70 percent of employees say having friends at work is key to a happy working life.
      Engage in technology
      The third success factor in effective onboarding concerns technology – are you maximising its use in your employee integration process?

      Tools such as e-learning, web-based portals, videos, webinars and survey software are fast becoming to go-to solution for onboarding employees, and with good reason.

      From a new joiner perspective, software tools get them up to speed faster. They help to keep track of goals, deadlines, expectations, checklists, organisational news and broader social networking opportunities. They also provide an efficient way to learn and communicate with other colleagues.

      From a human resource perspective, automating paperwork and routine administrative tasks allows more time to be spent on supporting new joiners with personalised strategies.
      Conclusion
      Now I've got you thinking jump on the Trampoline! Go check out High-Performance Leadership, get the app for free and click Start today! I'm confident it's unlike anything else you've tried. And that's deliberate! For such a huge problem (engagement) we had to get really creative. For change to happen you have to do things differently, right? Keep on experimenting and inventing - that's what gets you leaps and bounds ahead of the game.

      I'd LOVE you to try High-Performance Leadership and start improving straight away - test it for yourself and then try it out on your team!

      If you're interested in learning more, drop me a line!
      A leadership mentor,
      for self-improvers
      & high performers.
      With a personal accountability coach in your pocket, it's easy to keep on top of your game. Get High-Performance Leadership App!
      If you want to hear more about Trampoline, send us a message at info@trampolineplatform.com
      Photo by Danielle MacInnes on Unsplash
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