Onboarding is an essential process for company success and employee engagement. Processing new hire paperwork, getting them set up with finance and IT, and ensuring that things are right for their first day and even beyond that sets the tone for a positive employee experience that retains top talent.
However, to get to that point, HR representatives need to review and enter paperwork, coordinate with different departments, and stay on top of the entire process to ensure nothing gets missed. Depending on the hiring pace of your organization, this can be a tedious process that takes resources away from other strategic initiatives. And, at the end of the day, who wants to be handing paperwork all day?
Automating your onboarding process solves many, if not all, of these problems. With automated onboarding, HR representatives can save time and money while improving the employee experience. A positive onboarding experience can increase engagement, retention, and productivity: it’s a win-win for everyone involved.
New employees who went through a structured onboarding program were 58% more likely to be with the organization after three years. When automating your onboarding workflow, consider the following factors to make the process easier for everyone:
Best-in-class companies are 53% more likely to use pre-boarding: the process of sending and completing paperwork before an employee’s first day. By sending this out as soon as possible and not waiting until their first day, you’re getting an important opportunity to measure engagement before they even start. You can track how quickly employees are completing their paperwork, opening materials, and engaging with the process. E-signature platforms such as Adobe Sign or Doc33usign allow new employees to complete paperwork quickly and easily, leaving them with a positive impression right from the start.
Whenever a new person starts, IT is inundated with tasks: getting their technology set up, creating accounts, and granting access to specific applications. One tip here is to include technology requests into the onboarding paperwork. Once it’s filled out, those requests can automatically be sent to IT to be closed. Creating these tickets manually is time-consuming, and things can be missed.
Having the right technology and access on day one is essential, and even more so in remote or hybrid settings. This ensures that new hires are able to orient themselves with the tools they need to be productive, and they don’t waste precious time waiting around for access, which can cause frustration and affect engagement.
Robust benefits packages are commonly cited as a reason for joining a company. That’s even more reason to give new hires time to read through the available offerings and make the right selections for their lifestyle. On or even before their first day, employees should receive information regarding benefits selection and how to sign up. Automated reminders around important deadlines ensure that employees get their selections in on time and can be processed for their first day of eligibility.
Continuous feedback requests
Onboarding doesn’t end after the first week. It’s a continuous process that can, and should, take into consideration feedback from previous new hires. Implementing 30-60-90 feedback surveys can help HR and managers conduct a pulse check throughout a new employee’s first few months. This type of continuous feedback can identify and diagnose issues before they become bigger problems.
This also helps HR and managers engage with employees beyond the standard onboarding procedures, which can seem transactional. Diving into subjects such as culture fit, manager support, and organizational alignment provides insights from people with a fresh perspective.
20% of new hires leave a job for a new opportunity within the first 45 days on the job. The sooner you’re able to catch and address these problems, the better retention and engagement you’ll have across the company.
Manage data in a centralized location
Perhaps the most important step to automating your onboarding process is to have a centralized location to store employee data. Such a system will make it much easier to refer back to employee records when needed or share data with different departments without having to re-enter it in the system. This database can also act as a single source of truth for reporting and analytics, giving managers and leadership teams valuable insights into how onboarding programs are performing.
Some of the core benefits of an automated process include increased employee retention, reduced operational costs, and reduced errors in employee data. Once a company has selected the right person for a position, it’s in their best interest to keep them and help them grow in that position. The average employer spends up to $4,000 and four weeks to hire someone. If a new employee leaves within their first few weeks, the company loses out on a significant investment. Reducing errors in data transfer also helps companies save time and money.
Optimizing the onboarding process is not just a ‘nice to have,’ it’s an essential part of a company’s long-term success. It enables employee adoption while minimizing risk to the company. The competition for talent is greater than ever, and employees want to work at places that prioritize efficiency and productivity. By implementing an automated process, you show new hires that you prioritize these values and will provide them with a strong foundation to create meaningful work. Using this process will give new employees confidence from the moment they agree to join the company throughout the rest of their tenure.
Adi Janowitz is VP of Customer Success at Hibob. Adi has vast experience in building and leading Customer Success organizations in SaaS companies. In her recent role, she re-built the EMEA CS department at WalkMe. Prior to that, she built the Idomoo global CS org from the ground up. Adi’s focus is on boosting retention by building a scalable KPI-driven CS organization while creating KPI coherency for the entire company.