• Emily Miller

Onboarding? It's Just like College

Do you remember when you first started college? Or maybe it was grade school, summer camp or a similar new experience. Did you have an orientation? Maybe you had a full day devoted to bonding with the other new students/ program participants or you started college a week earlier with all the other first-years. You spent your days learning the ins and outs of the campus, where to find the best food and who to sit with on the quad if you wanted to find out which professors had the easiest class.

Well, I remember all of those learning experiences, and I miss it! In today’s business world, you may or may not hear the word onboarding in your everyday life; but all onboarding really is, is orientation. It can feel incredibly daunting to be starting over somewhere else when you move companies or even transfer offices in your professional life.

The new trend in employee communications is creating an immersive onboarding program. Companies used to see onboarding as a buzzword or a box they had to tick, but now they see it as a way to kick-off the employee experience by introducing new hires to leadership quickly, putting forth their cultural values and acclimating new colleagues to the organization. Onboarding can be one of the simplest and most influential aspects of a new employee’s beginning at your organization. Effective and structured onboarding within the first six months increases an employee’s three-year retention rate by 58%.

So, let’s take a look at how you can ease new colleagues into their new environment:

  • Make sure your HR or payroll team gets your new colleagues all of the right tax documents, logins, maps and resource/contact lists before they walk in the door on that first day.

  • New coworkers should get a tour of the building and office floor, as well as some local hotspots that maybe the gang goes to for Happy Hour or lunch.

  • For the first three weeks, managers should be hosting regular meetings with their new hires. Goal setting and understanding roles and responsibilities will be critical to the team’s success. It is also a great time to share the educational opportunities and stretch-projects that your company can offer.

  • Hosting a luncheon with leadership teams, with departments or with all of the new hires together is a fantastic and simple way to start breaking the ice!

There are numerous ways to onboard new colleagues to your organization. Up to 20% of employee turnover occurs during the first 45 days, so welcoming new hires and acclimating them to the work environment quickly and effectively has never been more important. To learn more about what you can do to attract, engage and inspire new talent – reach out to Cheer Partners today!