Guide to Automated Employee Onboarding for the Best Onboarding Experience

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HR managers face numerous challenges every day, but none is more intensive than recruiting and training employees. Demand is insatiable, but the talent pool continues to shrink. Despite the talent shortage, it has become more important than ever to be successful in finding the right candidate. But once the right person is found, an even greater challenge begins.

After spending endless hours searching, identifying, interviewing and recruiting the right talent, all your hard work will go to waste, and you'll be back to step one when the new hire leaves in a greener landscape. Or what if a candidate accepts an offer, confirms the notice period, agrees to an entry date, but backs out at the last minute?

Can a more structured employee onboarding, implemented through a defined employee onboarding process, really prevent such a thing? Would it really increase employee engagement, create a sense of loyalty in new hires and in return improve employee retention?

What is employee onboarding?

The definition of employee onboarding varies from company to company. While the process tends to be almost similar, the time frame and the tasks involved make each onboarding program unique.

While a few HR managers seem to view the employee induction process simply as the paperwork for new hires, more experienced and dedicated team members have a different view on the importance of employee induction. They view the entire period from the time an offer is posted until the moment an employee becomes a productive employee for the company as part of the employee onboarding process.

Onboarding extends from the minute you make an offer to the moment when the employee actually starts producing in a role.

Every process that falls within this period, including the orientation program, training plan, setting up performance metrics and a feedback loop, is segmented under the definition of "onboarding.

What is the onboarding process for employees?

Employee Onboarding is the process of introducing new employees to the environment and culture of the organization. However, the time required for this can vary from one organization to another.

A few organizations consider a one-day onboarding period, while others extend the onboarding period to 18 months. However, in almost all organisations, the induction process for employees starts immediately after the letter of offer has been sent to a potential employee. The following is an in-depth look at how the onboarding process works.

Why efficient employee onboarding is important?

The "onboarding" of an employee is the first interaction of an employee with the company directly after the lengthy interview process.

  • If the experience does not meet expectations, your employee may regret his decision to accept the job offer.
  • The negative impression that a poor onboarding process leaves behind can affect their perception, give them a biased view of the organization and ultimately cause them to quit early.
  • A solid onboarding process is necessary to help your new employees get used to their workplace, get to know the organization, gain clarity about their work goals and build a good relationship with other employees.
  • An unforgettable orientation experience not only makes the employees feel welcome, but also helps them to fit into the existing organizational family more quickly.
  • HR managers are already under enough pressure. Just the thought of dealing with the huge amount of paperwork involved in the onboarding process is enough to cause nightmares.
  • So streamlining the onboarding process for employees not only impresses new employees, but also reduces the workload on the HR team.

Benefits of using onboarding automation by one employee

To avoid last-minute confusion and compliance issues, you need a solid employee training process. Here's what efficient onboarding software can do for employees:
  • It gives you a clearly defined onboarding template
  • Minimizes the chaos caused by paperwork
  • Shortens the life cycle of the employee when he or she joins the company
  • Reduces manual intervention and human error
  • Reduces the workload of the HR team
  • Provides a consistent experience for all new hires
  • Brings transparency to the process flow
  • Offers the employees an unforgettable experience on board
Here is a guide that you can view for an effective onboarding solution:

A good process flow for the onboarding of an employee

Release of the offer
The process of training employees begins directly after the recruitment phase. Once an employee has been selected, an HR manager sends a warm welcome email with some important documents such as the letter of offer, links to complete digital onboarding forms and policy documents. A transparent approach will familiarize the employee with the culture of the company and what to expect.

Acceptance of the offer
Once the employee accepts the offer, the best organizations arrange a short call to review the forms, benefits, policies and expectations. The retention of the newly hired employee will reinforce their decision to accept the offer and build strong emotional ties with the organization. This is the right time to start outlining the employee orientation agenda.

The waiting period
Just because an employee has accepted the offer does not mean that he or she will appear on the accession date. During the waiting period, the employee may also be open to offers from other potential employers. It is therefore crucial to establish a good relationship with the employee. Let the employee know that he is valued. It is a good idea to plan the waiting period as well when you design the entry process for your employee.

The day of joining
On the first day, most new hires have mixed feelings. They feel anxious, happy, excited and nervous at the same time. The main task of the personnel managers is therefore to make sure that the newly hired employees feel welcome and comfortable. If you create a sense of belonging in new hires, they feel more engaged and can concentrate better on their work.

A handy checklist for employees who come on board will reduce the stress of HR staff. Here are a few things to do before the day of recruitment:
  • Have the orientation plan ready
  • Assign IT assets (workplace, email access, etc.)
  • Obtain necessary office supplies (furniture, keys, access card, etc.)
  • Set up a salary account
  • Assign a mentor or contact person who can help the employee settle in.

Coordination with other departments
It is important to coordinate with the main stakeholders (employees and managers) and to inform them of the date of the start of the recruitment. HR employees can involve other employees to decorate the new employee's cabin, organize personal welcome meetings and plan an orientation event.

Training and orientation
In orientation sessions, the newly hired employee is given an overview of the culture of the organization and an insight into the company's goals. This phase provides the new hires with relevant information about the teams within the company, the team processes and the company policy. This is the right time to set role-based goals and objectives for the next 30/60/90 days to show the new employees what to focus on.

Since a large proportion of employees require basic training at the beginning, most companies plan the training program so that their employees are quickly brought up to speed. A skills assessment helps employers assess the knowledge and skills of new employees and develop a personalized, role-specific training plan tailored to their skills.

The first quarter
The main objective of this period is to review the expectations of the organisations and the employee and to ensure that they are in line. This phase must be filled with active dialogues about the progress and continued efforts of the newly hired employee to become an integral part of the organisation.

Here is a checklist of the tasks that HR staff and managers need to complete in order to retain the newly hired employee for a long time:
  • Discuss the employee's experience and see if it meets their expectations.
  • Review their performance and provide feedback
  • Check if the employee has any concerns or problems
  • Talk about career planning and progress
  • Get feedback on onboarding and suggestions
  • Determine whether they need additional training

Reinventing employee onboarding through automation

No matter how big the company is, HR managers tend to have too much on their plate. They spend enough time looking for the right resources, and by the time the induction process begins, they are literally exhausted. Instead of making them even more tired by forcing them to do things the old-fashioned way, automating the process can significantly reduce their workload.

With HR workflow automation software, you can eliminate the onboarding checklist and forms and eliminate the manual dependency in the employee's onboarding process. With an automated employee workflow, the complex approval process can be simplified and streamlined. In addition, the workflow would be largely transparent, making it easy to retrieve status information or locate problems.

With an automated onboarding application at work, you don't have to chase after new employees and managers to do the tasks assigned to them. The system takes care of it. Automatic notifications are sent to the right people, causing a delay in the workflow. The only time you need to intervene is when the system encounters a roadblock.

To automate the workflow, you don't have to invest a huge amount of money in human resources management software or depend on the IT team developing sophisticated software. With a simple workflow tool, the entire employee onboarding process can be automated end-to-end. Even HR employees who have little or no knowledge of the technology can use the drag-and-drop interface to create an automated workflow from scratch or customize one of the predefined onboarding templates to suit their needs.

Conclusion

A good onboarding tool should give new employees a dose of motivation to explore uncharted organizational territory without a hint of hesitation.

With an automated onboarding process, new employees can spend less time on paperwork and more time understanding the values of the organization, exploring the workplace and making new friends.

Are you tired of spending too much time with the employee on board? Is your IT staff too thin on the ground to customize a product for you? Are you looking for a simple and elegant tool that does the job efficiently? IceHrm is the answer to all your employees' onboarding problems. Get a free demo to see how our employee onboarding app can make your problems disappear like fog.

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