Recently, I was looking into the statistics behind employee onboarding and how that process correlates to performance, tenure, etc. Does it surprise you that a recent study found that the new hire onboarding process sets a tone which, if negative, can leave ONE IN FIVE new hires unlikely to recommend the employer?
What’s more, the average US employer spends roughly $4,000 and 24 days to hire a new worker.
You guys. That’s a lot of money and time — particularly if you’re onboarding process is shit and you’re leaving new hires less-than-excited about their new gig. In fact, employees who have a negative experience are twice as likely to look for new opportunities in the near future.
Now, consider the other costs of having to start this process all over again. It’s the cost of vacancy, the lost productivity of the rest of the team or group, the impact on company morale … it’s way more than just the money.
Of course, this got me thinking … what can we do to make this process better? Not just for our bottom line, but for the people we’re bringing into our business?
Here are some quick thoughts I had while researching the subject:
#1. UTILIZE TECHNOLOGY
The average new hire will have roughly 54 activities to complete during their onboarding experience. Some will be documents to sign, but most will be administrative tasks. How can we streamline this process so it’s not as overwhelming and monotonous?
I think technology can help here. There are a lot of employee onboarding solutions out there that put all of these administrative tasks into one easy-to-use platform. But …
#2. DON’T FORGET THE HUMAN ELEMENT
We are, after all, bringing new team members into our business. We want their experience to be one that reflects our company culture and sets a precedent for how we operate. Having a technology to help streamline the process is great, but be sure you also have a real human being available to your new hires.
Something as simple as a company meet-and-greet with new hires can ease the transition. Or, perhaps you have a mentoring or shadowing program that helps keep the process human.
#3. HAVE A PLAN
We’ve all seen it — companies that just kinda “wing” their onboarding. There’s no real set structure or plan for how to bring someone into the fold. Another study I found said that one-third of new hires feel their onboarding program with informal, inconsistent, or reactive. That doesn’t set a great tone.
The best employee onboarding programs are structured and strategic (people learn something) vs. administrative (boring). When we focus on people (and not paperwork) we can set a better tone, while also showing that we’ve got our act together.
#4. DO SOME FOLLOW-UP
Lastly, I think it’s important to remember that onboarding is only the first step. Once the employee starts, be sure to follow-up with them — see how they’re doing, ask about their experience, listen for ways you can help. This is a great opportunity to 1) show them you care and 2) make your process better for the next hire.
What does your company’s onboarding process look like? Are new hires excited to come to work? Are they overwhelmed with administrative paperwork? Have you thrown it all out the window and are using AI to find and onboard your new hires? I want to hear from you!