Great Leadership

How Valuable is a Good Onboarding Strategy?

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Simon Deignan2021-04-20
Gone are the days of ‘here’s your desk, now get to work’. Nowadays, many of us will, thankfully, go through a series of onboarding sessions designed to help us quickly assimilate into our new work environment. But what many may not realize is just how beneficial a good onboarding process is to both a company and their newest members.

What exactly is onboarding?

While the term onboarding may be common in the lexicons of recruiters, talent acquisition specialists and HR professionals, it is still a foreign concept to many. In simple terms, onboarding refers to how a company integrates its new employees. This may include training sessions, meet and greets, and orientation workshops. 

This can be the perfect opportunity for a company to help bring their new hires up to speed, welcome them into new teams and ensure they feel comfortable in their surroundings. More and more companies worldwide are investing increased resources into their onboarding strategies so they can reap the wide variety of rewards. 

Key onboarding statistics

A look at a variety of HR and recruitment metrics highlights just how beneficial and cost effective it can be to implement a strong and sustainable onboarding program. 

  • Employee retention rates can be improved by up to 82% while productivity, likewise, may increase by over 70%.
  • Those who expressed displeasure with their onboarding process were twice as likely to look for another job in the not too distant future.
  • 9% of employees surveyed by CareerBuilder expressly stated that they left a job due to a poor onboarding experience; 29% said they didn’t believe their organization put them in a position to succeed.
  • Those with a positive experience were 18 times more likely to feel highly committed to their new organization. This is in stark contrast with those who felt dissatisfied.  

Employee satisfaction must be a key consideration here as a poor first impression can be hard to overcome. We see that content and well integrated new hires will, not only, feel more at ease in their new work environment, but are more likely to stay longer thanks to this greater sense of belonging. All of these factors combine to reduce recruitment costs, improve employee feedback and enhance an organization's brand image. 

The importance of a good first impression

We have briefly mentioned the close link between employee morale and the onboarding process, but let’s dig into it a bit more now. Understandably, the first few days, weeks, and even months of a new job can be a daunting experience, even for the most experienced of workers. It can all be quite overwhelming: new colleagues, systems, ways of working, and, in some instances, cities. 

Many working in the tech world have admitted to feeling what is known as ‘imposter syndrome’ - 58% in fact. This is, no doubt, heightened by the information overload experienced during the first days and weeks in a new role. This phenomenon is of course not limited to the tech industry and an onboarding program that bears these concerns in mind can go a long way in helping to alleviate these feelings of inadequacy. 

Group onboarding sessions can also provide new employees with an additional resource and help promote a sense of camaraderie. This time efficient way of training a number of new arrivals may also help relieve any feelings of isolation we have all felt when walking into an office full of strangers. Making this a shared experience is another layer of support companies can provide. 

A unique experience 

Of course, it goes without saying that each company needs to craft its onboarding experience to best suit their needs and the needs of their new hires. No two companies are the same so why would they want to adopt someone else’s onboarding process? Some of the world’s biggest companies, such as Netflix, LinkedIn, and Eventbrite, have tailored their processes to best serve the needs of their newcomers. 

For startups, integrating people into, what is often, a tight knit culture can pose its own difficulties and complexities. Moreover, organizations that put a premier value on culture will need to help new hires understand how they can best contribute to this ethos while still encouraging their individuality.

Large scale corporations must focus on assimilating new employees into their respective teams while helping them understand their place within the organization's structure. This, of course, can be a difficult task as many workers in large workplaces often feel like a small fish in a big ocean, let alone a pond. 

Everyone’s a winner

We can unequivocally say that investing the necessary time and effort into developing a strong onboarding strategy will reap a wide range benefits from the cost saving measures to increased employee satisfaction. Both employees and employers stand to gain from this process and the upsides speak for themselves. 

Online onboarding guides can help provide a proven and effective base upon which you craft your own framework for all future onboarding sessions. We here at Mentimeter offer interactive tools that can help make onboarding activities interactive and engaging.

Click here to read more about some of the HR workshops you can host with Mentimeter. 

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