Employees are now pickier with where they work, and employers have to adapt to attract the best talent to their business. Reputation goes a long way for a business, and that extends past customer relationships and into a positive reputation for current and past employees. If people have nice things to say about your business while they’re there or after they leave, chances are your business will be looked at as a great place to work. Part of that healthy work environment is the importance put on onboarding new employees, and how that lays the foundation for the new employee’s positive career growth and it leads to increased profitability for the business’ bottom line. We’ll check out some of the best practices your company needs to adopt for better employee onboarding.
What is “Onboarding”
Before we get into best practices for onboarding, we need to know what “onboarding” actually means. In short, onboarding is a term businesses use for training new employees to use the systems and procedures your business works under to stay organized, efficient, and consistent. Each company runs their business differently, so it’s important to make sure every employee in your business works the way you want it to work from the management down to the crew member on site.
Hire for the Whole Year
Businesses usually hire as a reaction to needing more staff. It makes complete sense to solve the problem of being short-staffed with the solution of hiring more people. While this solves the issue of an unexpected resignation or letting go of an underperforming employee, businesses should typically hire with the idea of growth rather than as a means to solve a problem.
By hiring for the long run, businesses can establish foundational employees needed to carry out company growth goals. You, as the business owner, can take the time to properly train and onboard the new employees, find their fit among the business, and guide them towards the skills they need to develop for their own personal growth and your business’ growth. New employees will be more likely to stay within your business if you plan and treat them as a key member to your team.
Set Goals with New Hires
“Hey, grab a broom and start sweeping.”
One of the biggest worries new hires have when starting a new job is not knowing what they’re supposed to be doing. It sucks not knowing how to contribute, what you’re working towards, and wondering whether or not you’re doing a good job while making a good impression. Businesses should take the time to explain to the new hire what the vision is for their growth, impact, and trajectory for an appropriate time frame.
Management should gameplan specific milestones or goals for the employee to hit as a measuring stick for their success. It can be something as simple as learning how to complete the daily task of circle-checking their truck by the end of their first week on the job or operating a particular piece of equipment by their fourth month of employment. Make sure to set goals that are: specific, measurable, actionable, relevant, and time-bound.
Include Organizational Onboarding
Company culture is a pretty broad term that groups together the values of a company, its employees, the expectations and goals, and desired output. As silly as “company culture” might sound to some people, it definitely exists in forms of company hierarchy, small phrases and words only your company or industry would use, or even a “beer o’clock” at the end of the day on Friday. Onboarding new employees into your company culture is often an aspect nobody thinks of, but it’s a fast track way of encouraging new hires to know where to look when they need something.
Management should take the time to explain who does what, where stuff can be found, when to expect things happening, and what the day-to-day looks like from the smallest detail. The sooner you can bring your new hire into your company culture, the sooner they can become comfortable and confident members of your team. This approach also makes onboarding a team effort in the company rather than an entire lift on one person. Nobody likes being on the outside looking in and not understanding the joke everyone else gets.
Socially Onboard Every New Hire
Get to know who you are hiring. Most of the global workforce spends more time with coworkers than they do their own family. Take the time to get to know your new hires on a personal level so that there’s something to connect over than just work.
It’s tough finding that sweet spot of socializing without making it seem forced or corny. Some people thrive being thrown in the deep end and meeting every single person with no issue, while there are some people who might take a bit to warm up socially and are timid when it comes to interacting in a new environment. Try to slot some time aside in onboarding for introductions to other teammates, take the time to ask new hires about their hobbies, or get to know what really drives them in life or what makes them happy. Real relationships are built at work all the time, and chemistry goes a long way in a professional environment. If you find someone that fits within your culture, you can always train their skills later. Some people stick around long term for the company culture.
Keep Moving The Onboarding Process
It’s easy to get caught up in actual work when you’re supposed to be onboarding a new hire. Neglecting the onboarding process is the wrong approach to bringing on a new member of your team who’s relying on your insights and know-how to do their job at a high level. Setting timely goals for onboarding milestones can help guide both the new hire and the trainer. If work picks up, which it probably will, these goals and expectations can be passed off to another team member to assist in the training process. Teamwork ensures that onboarding is smooth and uninterrupted.
Standardize Your Company’s Onboarding
Consistency is key. Each employee should have the same onboarding process that fits the role they’re hired for. Standardizing onboarding makes sure that there aren’t any knowledge gaps when new employees are ready to contribute at full speed whether they’re in management or crew member positions.
Start standardizing your business’ onboarding process by establishing the essential info needed for the position. Next step is to determine the time it takes to educate and train a new employee on those duties, what training tools are needed to complete training, and who can champion training new employees. Onboarding needs to be repeatable and give the same results no matter who is training the new employee. Once you have your business’ onboarding process down to a science, it can be scaled up as your business grows. It makes scheduling easier to know who is hired and who’s training the new hire for how long, and what stage of onboarding they’re at.
On-demand video training is a flexible and essential onboarding tool businesses use to get their new hires up to speed faster. Greenius leads the way with a massive variety of on-demand video training modules that cover everything from equipment, health & safety, and management content. Learn more about how your business can free up resources and speed up the onboarding process with new hires.