Functional employee onboarding involves three things:
You hired Marketing Manager Mike for his SaaS expertise. He’s a great hire and you’re excited to see him boost your free trial conversion rate.
But he focusses his energy on acquisition. He achieves some great results – but they’re not the results you needed. He doesn’t have the anticipated business impact, which causes disappointment on all sides.
On Mike’s first day, he and his boss sit down and discuss various challenges the department faces. Mike understands that acquisition is important but it’s secondary to increasing free trial conversion.
They discuss where Mike can add most value, and collaboratively set three, six, and nine-month performance targets aligned to the business’ goals. He’s assigned a job mentor for on-the-job training plus a targeted training session all about your current free trial set-up.
Which all means this: the social prong of employee onboarding is absolutely, totally, completely vital. A quick first-day office tour and introduction-overload won’t cut it.
Instead, create opportunities for your new hire to connect with current employees before their first day.
That’s something Talmundo’s onboarding platform makes super simple. Build a hub to introduce current employees, using testimonials and employee stories to break the ice.
And think offline too. Could you organize a pre-start social for your new hire to meet the team out-of-office? That’s a fantastic way to boost engagement during their notice period: the highest risk time for drop-outs.
Then once they start, make social onboarding a priority. Look for ways to encourage socializing across your business, like a buddy or mentor system, collaborative projects, communal meetings, and communal breaks.
Prong four: Cultureboarding
Onboarding and workplace culture are – or should be – closely entwined. Which seems obvious, when you say it aloud. But you’d be surprised how many businesses still don’t actively onboard into their culture.
They onboard into their office, sure. They tell new hires, ‘office hours are 8.30am until 5.30pm’ and ‘Sally Jones is your HR point of contact if you need help’.
Doesn’t her partner work somewhere in the business? I don’t want to offend her by airing concerns about her friends.
Cultureboarding is about explaining the difficult-to-explain stuff that makes your company what it is.
It means letting new hires peek behind the curtain. Telling them your values and mission, with tangible examples of how that works in the office. Showing them what your office environment is like – before their first day so they know what to wear, what time to arrive, and whether to bring lunch.
Spreading the responsibility for onboarding outside HR is important. HR only have one perspective. Diverse perspectives from colleagues, mentors and managers are puzzle pieces that complete the picture of your culture for new hires.
Is your employee onboarding program good enough?
The first prong of employee onboarding is important. But it’s certainly not the end-point. If your business is guilty of stopping here, you’re missing many (or most) of the benefits of onboarding.