Effective onboarding is a vital part of any business, large or small. During onboarding, new employees learn about core company values, discover company culture, and gain an inside understanding of your business. When done correctly, this process orients new employees and brings them up to speed to rapidly begin their work. When onboarding is done incorrectly or chaotically, an employee will have to gather information about the company, culture, and their job by asking those around them, interrupting workflow, and learning from mistakes.
Consistent onboarding processes welcome new employees to the group and help them find out what to do, where to go, and who can answer their questions. This minimizes workflow interruptions and helps employees succeed right out of the gate. Additionally, proper onboarding reduces costly mistakes.
How to build a predictable onboarding process
One of the first things to focus on when building an onboarding process is predictability. Every employee should receive the same message about the company, its culture, and core values on their first day. This provides predictability for each employee and brings them into the company knowing what to expect.
Here are the steps for building a consistent onboarding process for each new hire:
1. Make everything accessible
Write down the company core values and gather all company policies. Put together orientation videos, welcome videos, and even virtual tours of commonly used software.
Gather all of this onboarding material and put it in one place that is accessible and easy to reach. There are excellent cloud-supported platforms like Whale and Sweet Process that can systematize all types of material and make onboarding more effortless.
2. Create a checklist
You really need two checklists.
a. The first checklist should include what needs to happen on your end before an employee arrives. This is when you consider what access they should have, who will set up their email account, and how a trainer will be assigned to them.
Share your checklist with anyone involved so that they understand their duties.
b. The second checklist should include all onboarding steps for a new employee. This process will likely extend from day one to day thirty, and orientation may last longer than one day. You can determine what is best for new hires in your company. In our experience, it’s better to get an employee oriented in those first few days than throw them in the fire and let them disrupt productive employees over the course of the next few weeks.
3. Fill in the gaps
Review the materials you gathered in step one. Is anything missing? What does your new hire need right at the outset? Do you need to provide a “how-to” for accessing a commonly used system, provide an intro video to the management team, or share company-wide goals?
4. Set onboarding goals
What do you want to accomplish through the onboarding process? Does following the checklist and reviewing the material achieve your goal?
5. Customize onboarding for each position
While you likely have generalized onboarding material, you will need specific training material for each position. Look at all open and currently occupied positions and create a separate checklist for each job. Many functions utilize different resources or require varied support and training. So, it’s helpful to have a specialized checklist for each position.
6. Review the process
Finally, run through the process and make sure it works. It can be challenging to see gaps in a process while creating it, so it’s vital to do a test run and see how the checklist performs.
Once you have completed the above steps, you are ready to use the checklists for onboarding. You can take a further action of creating a survey at the end of the checklist for the new hire to fill out. In this, they can share anything they didn’t feel was covered by the onboarding process, and provide suggested improvements for future iterations.
Are you hoping to systematize your company? Contact Business Success Consulting Group today and get a free consultation to discover the most beneficial steps for your business.