Guide To Developing An Effective Employee Onboarding Strategy

What’s An Employee Onboarding Strategy And Why Do You Need One?

An employee onboarding strategy is a long-term strategy crafted carefully to introduce new employees to their daily responsibilities and company culture. This process also defines each person’s distinctive role and sets goals for future success. As a result, professionals learn how to perform their tasks with little to no supervision, increasing their self-confidence and trust. Managers provide team members with feedback, answer questions, and explore development opportunities that further prove the company’s investment and loyalty. An effective onboarding experience helps employees understand their job roles clearly, achieving high productivity quickly. Therefore, their engagement levels rise, and companies improve retention. Remember that the happier and more satisfied professionals are, the less likely they are to look for other opportunities. As a result, companies don’t have to waste resources on recruiting and hiring new people.

9 Practices To Incorporate Into The Onboarding Process

1. Utilize Preboarding

Preboarding is a wonderful way to welcome new hires before their first day at work and provide them with company swag or equipment they’ll need. For instance, you should send them their laptops or phones the week before their starting date, arrange important meetings on their calendar, and explain what the first few weeks look like. Your IT department must provide necessary access to relevant platforms, and administration should take care of payroll and legal documents. Additionally, make sure you introduce the new team member to the rest of the team.

2. Implement Learning And Development Discussions

L&D opportunities should be the focus of any employee onboarding strategy. The courses and progression incentives you offer must serve your company’s goals and align with each employee’s personal aspirations. You can’t force anyone to receive training on a subject they have zero interest in. Listen to your workforce to learn more about their interests and goals and carve out a development plan that fits those objectives.

3. Invest In Mentorship

Onboarding processes are stressful for newcomers, as they know nothing about your company and, possibly, about their responsibilities. While everyone has a manager or supervisor they can turn to, you may go a step further and assign new hires to buddies or mentors. Maybe they’ll feel more comfortable asking their colleagues questions instead of upper management. They can meet weekly, monthly, or as often as they wish.

4. Incorporate Blended Learning

If your business setting allows it, you can create a blended learning experience by combining digital onboarding with in-person educational classes. While eLearning offers flexibility to new hires and allows them to finish the material at their own pace, interactive experiences offer them the ability to communicate with colleagues and discuss pressing matters in detail. You can use videoconferencing if going to the office is out of the question, as it can feel like participants are in a shared space.

5. Highlight Company Culture

Many professionals would rather get a pay cut than work in a negative environment. Efficient communication and a workplace where motivation, engagement, and respect are widespread help employees feel valued and produce at high levels. So, discuss your company’s history and what your core values and goals are. People want to feel like they are part of a unit where everyone strives to achieve common objectives.

6. Create A Balance Between Learning And Doing

Employees often feel like they have to quickly prove themselves and their abilities. However, when managers push them into deep waters before they’re ready, their performance might be disappointing. For this reason, it’s a good idea to give them a project to work on while they are still learning. Make it clear that you have their back, regardless of how much help they may require or what mistakes they might make. Professionals need empathetic and supportive managers that don’t push them to their limits.

7. Conduct Regular Check-Ins And Provide Feedback

Providing feedback should be an ongoing process in your employee onboarding strategy. The same goes for frequent check-ins. Managers and supervisors must meet weekly or monthly with employees, even after their onboarding period ends, to discuss current projects. You have to ensure that everyone feels comfortable with their position and workload and offer them further training and learning opportunities if they need them.

8. Set Goals Beyond The Onboarding Phase

For new employees to reach short-term goals, they must be aware of what needs to be achieved in the long term. Also, by showing interest in professionals’ career trajectories, you actively exhibit your intention to keep them in your company and make them part of corporate success. So, discuss their personal goals and how they align with organizational objectives.

9. Make It Easy To Find Resources

New hires, especially those in remote workplaces, may have trouble asking for additional resources or raising questions. They fear that too many messages or emails may annoy their colleagues. Make sure you have a database where they can easily locate common resources and find answers to FAQs. Moreover, managers should make themselves available, no matter the query, big or small.

Metrics That Help You Evaluate The Effectiveness Of Your Onboarding Strategy

Onboarding Satisfaction

Your employee onboarding strategy depends on new hires’ experiences and thoughts about your processes. You may conduct surveys every three months during the first year to show appreciation to your newly acquired employees and allow them to voice their concerns. You may ask them how valued they feel at work, if they have enough resources, if they feel like they’re moving toward their goals, and what they would improve in your onboarding.

360 Feedback

Various people are involved in a new hire’s onboarding process, including managers from different departments and peers. After the first three months of onboarding, you can ask everyone about their opinions on your strategy. They may have identified missing pieces, disorganized information, and unnecessary steps that hinder team members’ progression.

Retention And Turnover Rates

During recruitment, many companies make a lot of promises to candidates that they are not able to fulfill. That’s why employees leave their positions in search of a better job. Such occurrences result in high turnover rates and decreased retention, which means extra spending for you. If you notice people leaving your business soon after getting hired, you should evaluate your employee onboarding strategy. What is it that you do wrong? Maybe you can hold exit interviews and ask professionals directly what drove them away.

Training Completion Rates

Your employee onboarding process is meant to train people on their job responsibilities and immerse them in your company culture. But when completion rates are low and professionals take extra time to complete tasks, you must revise your decisions. Maybe your content lacks interactivity, or the structure disengages employees. Possibly, the allocated time frame isn’t enough for completing mandatory training. Therefore, make sure your material is engaging and team members have enough time to finalize it.

Time To Productivity

How long does it take your employees to become fully productive with minimal supervision? The sooner professionals get the hang of things and produce high-quality work, the more efficient and cost-effective onboarding is. For instance, if your company is involved in sales, you would calculate a team member’s time to productivity by noticing when they start making sales and generating money.


Engaging and successful employee onboarding strategies must take four crucial elements into account: goals, access, relationships, and context. You must know exactly what your end goals are and how each new hire contributes to these objectives. You should provide professionals necessary resources and assistance they need to achieve success and complete their training. In the meantime, leadership should foster a collaborative and respectful workplace where every team member feels valued. The last key ingredient for a successful onboarding recipe is offering everyone the tools they need to succeed. From technical tools to ergonomic office space, professionals should feel confident arriving at work every day.

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