Recruits who have a negative onboarding experience are twice as likely to seek other employment opportunities in the near future. So a good new hire experience should be at the top of every HR department’s ‘must-have’ list.
Good onboarding is sharing knowledge, communicating values, building connections, and managing compliance to transform new hires into confident, empowered team members, and ambassadors.
And if you want a stand-out program, you’ll need a hefty dose of creativity.
That’s where we come in. We’ve put together 10 creative ideas to help you take your onboarding journey to the next level.
Let’s get stuck in!
|Phase 1: Preboarding|
Preboarding is the process of engaging your new hires from the moment they accept a job offer, through until their first day on the job.
Everything you do during the preboarding phase should be aimed at alleviating new hires' first-day fears and giving them the tools to be up & running faster.
1. Create a new hire ‘Be Prepared’ handbook
The boy scouts and girl guides live by the motto Be Prepared, which they define as ‘a state of readiness in mind and body to do your duty’.
It’s a great idea to keep in mind when creating this handbook. The aim is to ensure your new hire has all the information they need to walk in the door on their first day with confidence.
Be sure to include directions to the office, public transport recommendations, nearby lunch options, and of course where to get the best (and closest) cappuccino.
You can make this digital, or go the extra mile and create a physical book with blank pages in the back for note-taking (plus it doubles as company swag)!
2. Become a video virtuoso with digital meet & greets
It’s always nice to put faces to names before your first day. It gives you a fighting chance to remember some of the 27,000 people you’re likely to be introduced to within minutes of crossing the office threshold.
A great way to do this is to have teams film short introductory videos. Your new hire can film one too, and HR can upload them to a shared space where everyone can virtually meet one another - at their own pace.
3. Step into the future with a 360 office tour
Remember a world without Google Maps street view? When you had to physically travel to a location to know what sort of environment you were getting yourself into?
Well, that’s how so many new hires feel on their first day - a little lost, a little confused, and often unsure where the nearest bathroom is.
Do away with all that with a 360 office tour - a collection of stitched-together photographs that allow users to navigate, walk, and look around the spaces as if they are physically present in the room.
|Phase 2: Induction/Orientation|
Induction is the process of welcoming a new team member into the fold and familiarizing them with company policy and guidelines.
Here we want actions that help educate your new hire and set them up for a successful first week/month on the job.
4. Go glossy with a magazine-style company introduction
The classic company intro has known to be notoriously dull. A 20-page manual outlining an organization’s humble beginnings and their subsequent achievements in the intervening 20 years. Yawn.
Throw that notion away with a glossy magazine-style version that treats the subject with the excitement and design flair it deserves. You can even include crosswords, a quiz, a ‘who wore it better’ spread, or anything else you can think of.
We promise, your new hires will thank you!
5. Build ‘social savvy’ recruits
Social media is an excellent way to let new hires know about all of the fun and exciting things your organization is up to in an interactive, organic way.
But many companies are ambiguous at best and negligent at worst when it comes to outlining their social media policy.
A visual guide with examples of good vs. bad posts, tips on how to announce their new role, and a collection of your organization’s favorite hashtags will make things crystal clear for onboardees and, maybe even give your employer brand a boost.
6. Double-up with the buddy system
We know. It’s been done to death. But the buddy system works - and it has life left in it yet!
Turn your buddy system on its head with new ideas:
Buddy speed dating - If you have a large intake of new hires, this will give you maximum connection on a time crunch. Everyone starts with their assigned buddy, making their way around the room until they’re back in their original spot.
Buddy volunteering - Schedule your buddy pairs a couple of hours volunteering in an afternoon of their first week. This will let them get to know each other in an ‘outside of work’ context and allow for a more organic connection.
Buddy project - Have your buddy pairs work on a small project together, even if it’s just for an hour. Maybe it’s a contribution to the employee newsletter on things they have in common or a challenge to draw each other’s favorite cartoon characters - blindfolded!
|Phase 3: Integration|
In onboarding, an employee is considered integrated when they have a strong understanding of their job and responsibilities, a growing social connection to their team and the wider organization, a good grasp of company policies, and can navigate the spoken and unspoken rules of their new workplace.
In this final phase, it’s about taking things to the next level and ensuring your newest hire is ready for a fulfilling future with your organization.
7. Plan ahead with a travelogue-style career development guide
It’s never too early to be talking about career development.
Take inspiration from travel brochures and put together a guide of all the places your newest hires could ‘travel’ within your organization.
Try including interviews with some company ladder-climbers and of course beautiful inspiring photographs!
8. Offer ‘extra credit’ with opt-in training
Not everyone needs extra training, and some may be simply too busy to take advantage of it. But those who CAN take part will be thrilled to have some extra guidance.
Try different formats like lunch-and-learn webinars, videos from internal stakeholders, or a series of ‘top tip’ weekly emails.
9. Bottle that new hire enthusiasm for an Instagram takeover
Remember that new job feeling? You’re nervous yes, but mostly you’re excited and ready to get stuck in.
If you can, channel that fresh energy into an Instagram takeover with your new hires.
Put together a set of guidelines and have each new hire deliver three photos with accompanying text appropriate for one (or more) of your social media channels. Your social media manager can make the final call, but chances are you’ll strike gold and your new hire will really feel like part of the team.
|Last but not least...|
10. Consider a digital onboarding platform to manage it all for you!
If you’ve done all this, you probably know that keeping on top of your onboarding endeavors can be a big job.
Talmundo solves the problem with our full-service employee onboarding solution that centralizes the entire onboarding lifecycle.
With our world-class software, you can create personalized journeys for your new hires, where they can view content relating to the company and their role, complete onboarding assessments, view progress, communicate with colleagues, access roadmaps, fill in online forms, and much more!
Onboarding is the chance to WOW your new hires. It’s your opportunity to create a lasting impression and show your recruits they made the right decision in choosing you.
So get creative, push boundaries, and make the experience one to remember.