Onboarding Employee Experience Top 5 Trends

Onboarding Employee Experience Top 5 Trends

onboarding employee experience

Improve Your New Hires Onboarding Employee Experience Top 5 Trends

The importance of putting new employees through a meaningful and effective on-boarding employee experience is rising, with a new report highlighting the need for a thoughtful an sustainable process with input from the top as well regular tweaks and improvements through feedback from the employees experiencing it.

‘On-boarding – HR Insights Report’, from the Top Employers Institute, shows case studies and five best practice trends that include making on-boarding a process rather than a single event, measuring effectiveness and senior business leaders playing a key role in inspiring new employees from the first morning.

“We’ve seen a lot of exciting growth in on-boarding during the last few years,” Eleanor Nickerson, Director of UK Operations for Top Employers Institute, says.

“Companies realise it’s a key time to engage with employees meaningfully and that it leads to a better employee experience, a more engaged team and better results for the company. The trends outlined in our report are things that any company can do in their own way – even off-the-shelf technology can be relatively inexpensive – and I would encourage employers who don’t currently invest much time or energy into on-boarding to build a programme – the results show it pays off.

“The benefits of creating a multi-dimensional programme are rewarding for employees and company alike. When a new employee is educated, not only on their new role, but on values, strategy and how the organisation operates, they gain a more rounded understanding of the business – and that pays off as they settle in.”

Based on the report, Top Employers have compiled the five key trends for onboarding:

1. From event to process. Historically, on-boarding lasts a maximum of two to three days after a new employee joins the business. Top Employers, however, are starting on-boarding during the recruitment phase and maintaining it for three to six months post commencement, with some lasting up to 12 months. Key practices remain around the role, HR policies and procedures; however, there is a growing focus on internal connections. 75% of the UK companies researched assign a buddy, 77% use internal social media to chat with employees, 92% conduct a post-hire assessment and 58% hold a follow-up session a year after the employee joined.

2. Towards a multi-dimensional programme. The first impressions new hires gain may well shape the way they feel about their new employer in the longer term. Effective on-boarding needs to cover three main areas:

  • The business context (mission and vision; organisational strategy, branding, positioning and, potentially, challenges).
  • The situational context (the job; expectations, deliverables and what success looks like).
  • The cultural context (organisational values; how they are lived and the way they shape what the business does).

3. More active involvement of senior management. Senior business leaders play a key role in inspiring new employees from the first morning, whilst helping them to understand from the outset the overall business purpose.  Indeed, 77% of UK executive managers ensure they meet with new recruits (an increase of 15% since 2015) and 93% of executive management actively promote the importance of an effective on-boarding employee experience.

4. On-boarding goes digital. Trends show that technology assumes a central role in formatting and streamlining the on-boarding employee experience. It provides a quick and easy way to ensure traditional paperwork is completed digitally and an added bonus is the reduction of manual work and risk of potential errors. It also provides data for reporting and gaining insights to inform process enhancements. Within the on-boarding process, there is the potential to identify learning needs, create a learning plan and set up specific e-learning modules, as well as to help employees connect, engage and share. 77% of UK companies researched use internal social media to chat with employees (up 14% on last year), 66% share experiences over social media (up 20%) and 90% provide an on-boarding employee experience portal.

5. Gain insight: data driven programme improvement. Key metrics are being tracked. These measure impact and effectiveness, particularly if the aim is to assimilate new employees quickly, smoothly and effectively to become productive. Two main areas to look at are to check on the progress of employees and reflect on the process itself looking for areas of improvement. 69% of UK companies researched report on KPIs, up six per cent on 2015. Where KPIs are used it’s often to measure operational effectiveness, such as induction training completed on time. Participants are beginning to measure programme effectiveness, such as first year retention.

This article has been republished from HR Grapevine and you can see the original article here.



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