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Recruitment is not over when the new person starts: Why onboarding matters

Good recruitment is not just about finding the right person for the role. It also includes helping the new employee become a productive member of the team quickly and ensuring they stay around. One of the best ways of achieving this is following a strategic onboarding plan. It’s important to prepare this step well in advance, as falling short can contribute to high levels of attrition and wasted spending. Here’s why onboarding matters and how you can ensure that you get it right.

Manager’s responsibility

As studies show that 69% of employees are more likely to stay with a company for three years if they experience great onboarding, all managers should make it their responsibility to ensure new members are looked after and have all they need to successfully do the job. While many may think onboarding begins when a person starts the role, good onboarding, in fact, starts well before this.

Between the job offer and acceptance, managers should keep in frequent contact and if the candidate does decide to take on the role, it’s vital that the new employee is provided with all the information about induction and what to expect on the first day well in advance. It’s also advised that team members are notified about the new starter, know what their role entails and connect with them on LinkedIn.

It’s very important that a new employee receives a positive impression in their first week. This will influence how they feel going forward about the team, work and environment. That’s why you want to guarantee that they have all the tools required to comfortably hit the ground running. Before a new member comes onboard, make sure all the simple but necessary details are organised, such as the desk, phone, laptop and stationery.

Buddying up

Having a buddy system in place is a fantastic way to ensure new employees are guided and supported in their first few weeks. Having a designated, responsible and friendly person to show the ropes is great for easing nerves and helping them get adjusted. Hopefully trust is built through this relationship, which means less mistakes will be made as the new starter won’t be afraid to ask for help.

Dates for the diary

There are a few important checkpoints during an employee’s onboarding process that should be diarised and prioritised. Changing jobs and starting a new role can be nerve wracking for many, so it’s a good idea to put time aside and make sure everything is okay. Regular check-ins are also useful for identifying any problems and putting an end to them early.

Day 1: Conduct a thorough induction on the first day so they know the team members and other key contacts. This is also a good time to outline company and team objectives. This means they’ll be clear on what is expected of them from the start.

End of week 1: A catch up after the first week to make sure the new hire is feeling settled will make them feel welcomed and know that they are being looked after. It’s also a great time to answer any questions.

First 13 weeks: After the first couple of months, it’s a good idea to conduct a formal meet to see how they are feeling about their time at the company so far. Here you can address any queries on their duties and provide constructive feedback if required.

Checking in periodically will create a trusting environment where communication and feedback is valued. It also ensures that employees are on track to reach their targets and limits the chances of any surprises when it comes to appraisals.

Continuous Mentoring

Throughout the onboarding period and beyond, it’s vital that you mentor team members and provide them with valuable feedback. Making time to notice good work and highlight areas for improvement will let employees know that their work is being recognised, which inevitably boosts motivation and engagement. Continuous mentoring also helps develop new employee’s skillsets, which allows a return on investment to be made more quickly.

Cost of not engaging employees

The onboarding period is the best time to nurture engaged employees. By having periodic catch-up sessions, ongoing mentoring and buddy systems, it is likely that team members will feel more valued and connected to their work. In Deloitte’s recent Human Capital Trends Report, nearly nine out of ten executives surveyed cited work culture and engagement as important or very important. That’s because good leaders know that a lack of engagement leads to higher attrition. This of course can impact the remaining team’s workload, which can have a knock-on effect and lead to further disengagement and other staff members leaving.

Why onboarding matters: Cost of reducing attrition

According to an industry study, a company of 250 can save a total of £52,975 by reducing their attrition rate from 15% to 10%. One of the most effective ways of cutting back on this is by prioritising how employees are introduced to the business. As this blog shows, there are numerous reasons why onboarding matters, and once you implement a strategic plan to support this, there’s no doubt you’ll start seeing positive effects.

If you want to find out more about why onboarding matters or about creating a talent acquisition strategy, get in touch today.