7 tips to create an effective onboarding program

Starting at a company can be a very stressful experience for a new employee. There are new coworkers to meet, customers to be introduced to, paperwork to be filled out and a work culture to be assimilated to. That’s the reason why it is so important to create effective onboarding programs for new employees: It can ensure that they are introduced to their new company in an effective and efficient way, one that gives them a better idea of the company culture and company values of their new workplace.

Many times a lot of time, effort and money is spend in finding the right person for a job. After spending all this time, money and effort into hiring your new employee, you wish for your new employee to integrate well. From the moment you have found the right person the onboarding program should begin.

But how can you create an effective onboarding program? Here are a few tips:

Formal Program

Most importantly create a formal onboarding program. Make sure to include all relevant departments, including human resources and accounting. The program should lay out, step by step, what a new employee needs to do in order to start working at a new company. A good LMS, or Learning Management System, is essential for a solid onboarding program. It provides structure and allows the onboarding process to be monitored.

Start before the first workday

Start the onboarding procedure before the first day. This will allow the employee to get used to the company and be more prepared for their first day. A good way to get started is to create an interactive video about the history, values, mission and vision of the company. Give new employees access to the interactive video before their first workday.

Define Expectations

Make sure that you specifically define the expectations about your employee’s new role. Which tasks and responsibilities are associated with the new job? Which new skills does your new employee need to acquire to be successful at his or her new job?

Role specific Training

Procide role speficic training. Based on the expectations associated with the new job, your new employee will need to follow role specific courses and trainings. This process cannot only contain straight lectures or videos – that will bore your new employee to death. Instead, utilizing the LMS, create a mixture of interactive courses and classroom training.

Engaging Content

Whatever you do, make it engaging. A good program will have elements of gaming, micro-learning and a variety of interactive components. This applies to both company-wide courses and role specific training courses.

Personal Growth

Happy, motivated employees are employees who have the means to grow within the company. Your new employee needs to know which courses and training are available for them. Make sure you explicitly explain to employees how they can grow, train and ultimately move up a hierarchy within the company. The message you deliver should ensure that your company is one that values growth and training.

Mentor

Conclude the program by introducing your employee to a mentor who can guide them through the rest of their orientation. A good mentor must embody the company values. Ensure that this mentor is available to answer any questions. Of course, a good mentor not only answers questions, but also introduces the new employee to his or her new colleagues. The mentor plays a key role in the feeling of being included in the new workplace.

 

Remember, when done correctly, this process has several elements. It should successfully introduce a new employee to their company, establish company values, create a pathway for future growth and make a new employee feel good about their new job. If done correctly, this process will help create an employee who is excited about their new position, ready to get to work, and feels comfortable with the company that hired them.