Onboarding isn’t just an HR tick box. It’s an opportunity to bring your bright new talent up to speed quickly, effectively, and in a way that engages them from the get-go.
If you do it right, that is.
In the old days, new employees were welcomed with a welcome video (complete with awkward acting by the executive team) or a stack of printouts—or, worse, with no real onboarding process at all.
That won’t cut it these days. A lousy process is bad news for the employee, and when you scale it up across a workforce, it could be disastrous for the company. That’s because while great onboarding is about maximizing employee experience, it’s also about optimizing for business outcomes—things like productivity, performance, and, ultimately, profit.
Gallup’s State of the American Workforce report states that actively disengaged employees are almost twice as likely as engaged employees to seek new jobs. On the other hand, companies with highly engaged workforces outperform their peers by 147% in earnings per share.
A better way to onboard employees
Get onboarding right—for the sake of your employees and your entire organization. Here’s how you can do it with the help of Slack.
1. Give them a warm welcome on Day 1
Make new hires feel at home with a quick tour of the place. Using integrations like onboarding assistant GreetBot, you can automate welcome messages and reminders, and share helpful links and documents.
The ideal welcome isn’t only a nice-to-have. It’s a critical early step in the onboarding process that shortens ramp time so your people can get to full productivity fast.
2. Create #new-hires channels
When new folks join, give them a place to find answers to FAQs, access important documents, and meet other new starters. If you’re hiring on a large scale, create multiple channels to bring together all your new hires from specific time periods.
This will boost productivity and can be great for employee engagement. Your new hires will be able to meet their peers and find the essentials fast—not just company policies but recommendations for the best places to grab a bite too.
3. Make sure they hit the ground running
When you need to bring new employees up to speed on a project, one approach is to forward them a load of email threads and wish them luck.
A better way is to invite them to a project channel where they can easily find what they need—pinned posts and files, team members, and conversations—all with a scroll or a search.
4. Help them help themselves
No one wants to feel like a burden when starting a new job. Enable self-service to help new starters get answers for themselves. As an added benefit, it’ll take some heat off your HR team because they won’t have to deal with so many admin requests.
5. Remind them about the important stuff
You can schedule automated messages to arrive at key times, prompting your new hires to complete the next item on their onboarding checklist. No more missed deadlines, no more time spent chasing people down. Just new employees getting up to full productivity—and full confidence—as quickly as possible.
Over to you
Don’t treat onboarding like an HR tick box. Treat it as an opportunity to catapult your people to productivity, and to make their first days and weeks a sign of good things to come.
As the Gallup report puts it, “engaged employees produce better business outcomes than other employees—across industry, company size and nationality, and in good economic times and bad.”
So give new hires—and your whole organization—the best chance of success, right from day one.