Grace Smith
January 14, 2024

Organizations with a strong onboarding process can improve employee retention by 82%.

[Source: Brandon Hall Group]

And we all know it is much easier and economical to retain your existing employees than gain new ones. Providing a warm and welcoming onboarding experience for your new hires is a foolproof way to make the first impression go right. There are some obvious dos and don'ts when it comes to employee onboarding, but we are going to discuss the best practices that you can do to ensure that your employees feel safe and happy joining your company.

Why is Employee Onboarding Important?

Organizations looking forward to making employees their best resource must emphasize employee onboarding. It makes new hires feel welcome, prepared, and involved. Here are some reasons why employee onboarding matters:

First impression and employee engagement

New hires initially connect with the firm during onboarding. A well-structured onboarding program makes new hires feel appreciated and eager to learn more. Engaging onboarding boosts employee happiness, motivation, and loyalty. Engaged workers from day one are more likely to work hard, cooperate well, and bring new ideas to the company. A long and successful job relationship begins with this initial engagement.

Quicker learning and productivity

An effective onboarding process provides new hires with the knowledge, skills, and tools necessary for success. Proper training and orientation speed up employee productivity, allowing them to contribute to the organization's goals sooner. With defined roles and responsibilities, new hires can confidently complete their jobs and integrate into the team. This quick integration improves productivity and helps the company reach its goals.

Reduced employee turnover

Structured onboarding programs have been demonstrated to increase employee retention. A careful onboarding process shows the organization cares about the employee's performance, creating loyalty and dedication. Supported and connected employees are less likely to leave the company.

Reduced turnover controls recruitment expenses, protects institutional knowledge, and creates a stable workplace. Long-term employees can mentor new joinees, sharing knowledge and improving business culture.

The 5Cs of New Hire Onboarding

5Cs of onboarding mindmap

There are 5Cs when it comes to the onboarding process. Consider this as something like a checklist that must be ticked off before you finalize your employee onboarding process. Let us see what these many Cs stand for:

1. Compliance

Recruits must comply legally and administratively with the company.

Filling up the W-4 forms, signing contracts, and examining US corporation rules are some examples. HR or other relevant team members should examine these papers with new recruits to ensure they understand their rights, duties, and company expectations. Compliance also requires following safety rules and training new personnel on occupational dangers. Companies meet regulatory standards and provide a safe and orderly path for new workers by taking a broad approach to compliance.

2. Clarification

This C helps ensure that new recruits clearly understand their roles and how they fit into the company. Accurate job descriptions should detail their responsibilities and alignment with business objectives. During onboarding, managers and supervisors need to communicate performance goals, KPIs, and other metrics of success. It's also crucial for new hires to grasp the company's mission, vision, and values, as this knowledge fosters motivation and alignment with business goals. Clarity in roles and objectives gives new employees a sense of purpose and direction within their teams.

3. Culture

The candidate had already learned about the company culture during the interview. Once they start working for the company, they should make sure that all new employees fully understand and accept the culture, history, goal, and vision of the company. It's even more important for the new employee to fit in if they are filling a managerial post or higher because they will be "closely watched" by staff.

4. Connection

When you first start at a new job, everything and everyone is new, so it's hard to know what to do. Assisting new employees by putting them in touch with teachers and appropriate groups of employees can help them feel less overwhelmed at first.

5. Check-back

You should check in with the new employee every 30, 60, and 90 days. Even better, you should have an official "First 90-day plan" that lays out a formal transition plan and lists expected goals during this time.

Top 10 Employee Onboarding Best Practices that New Hires Love

A good orientation program solidifies whatever beliefs employees have of your company. In other words, you can plan your employee onboarding in such a way that it creates a solid impression on the new hires. Here are 10 tips to get it right:

#1 Comprehensive orientation program

Develop a thorough training strategy to guide new hires during their initial days and weeks. This should include a detailed schedule of training sessions, activities, and necessary tasks. Key elements could be:

  • Introduction courses
  • Training sessions
  • Participation in mentorship programs

Also, clearly define the roles of each team member involved in the onboarding process, ensuring everyone is on the same page.

#2 Personalized onboarding plans

Avoid one-size-fits-all approaches. Tailor the onboarding experience to each individual, as learning styles vary. Smaller, focused gatherings can be more effective than large, overwhelming welcome events. Personalization is key:

  • Understand new hires' preferences and backgrounds to craft a unique experience.
  • Use tools like pulse surveys to gather insights about them.

#3 Buddy or mentorship programs

Assigning a mentor or buddy to new hires can greatly enhance their initial experience. This person acts as a guide, helping the new employee navigate the company and settle in comfortably. Consider these steps for an effective mentorship program:

  • Pair new hires with veterans as teachers or buddies.
  • Explain how to obtain help and ask inquiries.

Veteran employees can share insights, answer queries, and introduce the company culture and operations. They can assist new hires, learn the unwritten norms, navigate the firm, and meet important individuals, making them feel more connected to the team.

Both new hires and mentors benefit from coaching or buddying. The opportunity helps veterans feel valued and indicates that the organization values their time with them.

#4 Clear communication channels

Fresh hires need to be able to understand and connect with others through clear conversation. Employers need to talk about their ways of communicating, working, and reporting. For each question, new employees need to know who to ask and how to get tools.

With clear lines of contact, new employees can quickly ask for help and don't feel alone or under pressure. New employees stay up to date on company news, policies, and events by talking to people one-on-one and in groups. This builds trust and safety in business.

#5 Meaningful introduction to company culture

A lively and welcoming workplace makes new hires happier and more engaged. Company culture should be shown through hands-on events, employee assessments, and other engaging activities. This can include team-building, cultural seminars, or company-sponsored charitable programs. Give new personnel a taste of the corporate culture to learn how to cooperate and develop. Participating in business culture makes people proud, which boosts new recruit success.

#6 Regular training and skills development

Structured training helps new recruits develop skills and expertise. Companies should offer more than job training. They should offer development and learning opportunities. Training, online programs, and credentials can be needed. Continuing education improves employees' skills and shows career care. New hires enjoy supervisors who promote and develop them. This motivates and engages employees.

#7 Recognition and feedback

Recognition for little accomplishments improves motivation in new hires. Rewards and advice in regular feedback meetings help people understand their strengths and faults. Reward, appreciation, or company-wide references are all forms of recognition. Finding value and appreciation makes new recruits happier and more loyal. It enhances workspaces.

ThriveSparrow is an employee success platform that helps you enhance recognition at your organization. The recognition module, Kudos, lets employees acknowledge and celebrate peer achievements, big or small through a unified space.

A screenshot of ThriveSparrow's recognition module, 'Kudos'.
ThriveSparrow's Recognition Module

Leaderboards portray the best of performers, giving them a plus point during performance reviews, and motivates other employees to perform better.

A screenshot of ThriveSparrow's Leaderboard feature
ThriveSparrow's Leaderboards

Accumulated appreciation points can be exchanged for rewards. This boosts employee engagement and morale.

Try ThriveSparrow for free today and uplift the employee experience at the workplace.

#8 Daily workplace values integration

New employees need to understand how corporate values impact their daily work. Businesses should demonstrate how these principles guide decision-making, collaboration, and customer service. Training new hires on these values helps them apply them in real-world situations.

When employees grasp how corporate goals relate to their roles, they are more likely to align with them. This alignment provides employees with purpose and camaraderie, creating a pleasant workplace with common values.

#9 Promote socialization and teamwork

Healthy work connections boost job satisfaction and collaboration. Informal talks or team-building activities can help new recruits get to know their coworkers.

Team-building activities include problem-solving, collaboration, and philanthropy. These encounters foster team trust and communication. The more socially connected new recruits are, the better they would collaborate and enhance the workplace.

#10 Ongoing support and development

New recruits will flourish with mentorship, growth opportunities, and frequent check-ins. Here are 19 questions you can ask for a smooth onboarding process, and help your employees transition into the role.

Leadership training, skill workshops, and educational stipends show the company cares about employees' overall growth. Companies that invest in growth retain good employees and train and motivate them to innovate and increase productivity.

New Hires to Loyal Employees

The journey of an employee from a new hire to a loyalist is a long one. But with a good employee orientation program in place, you can accelerate this conversion process. Drop in an employee feedback survey at the end of the onboarding process, and you are good to go. ThriveSparrow helps you create customized feedback surveys and also helps you analyze those results within mere minutes. And that is how, together with proper practices and efficient feedback, you create the perfect employee onboarding experience for your new hires.