Let’s be straight, the onboarding process does not end when the employee signs the new hire paperwork. It includes everything before and after that point, from the interview to the training process and it should be taken just as seriously for the employer as for the employee. Studies have shown that for a 100-person company with an average salary of $60,000, the turnover replacement cost could range from $750,000 to $3 million. That is not an amount to be taken lightly. Check out our suggestions for an effective onboarding process that will make for a successful future!
The onboarding process begins at the time of the interview. The position you are interviewing for should determine the level of experience the candidate will have under their belt. Keep in mind that a position requiring less than 5 years of experience is still considered an entry-level position which may provide a candidate with soft skills who will need a more in-depth training program for success. Are you asking the right questions in the interview? After the interview, you should know the skill level that the candidate holds and should also have a good idea of their personality. One thing that has shown success is having the candidate interview with someone who is currently in the role they are applying for. This person may have more specific questions that will relate to their day-to-day responsibilities, and they may be able to provide another perspective on the candidate pertaining to culture fit.
Once you have completed the interview process you may decide you would like to extend an offer to a candidate at which time you will also request a list of references. This is a crucial step that should not be overlooked or underdone. The references can provide you with direct feedback regarding the employees’ work ethic which will give you a clear idea of who you are hiring. The reference questions should be geared toward their upcoming role. In other words, if you are hiring for a customer service role make sure to ask how that person deals with customers, team members, and/or conflict. Are they good on the phone? Other questions that should be asked for each candidate relate to their timeliness, response to critique, learning ability, and how often they are asking questions for further clarification. The reference should either solidify your decision to extend an offer or perhaps make you rethink the candidate’s ability to thrive with your company.
After accepting the offer, the candidate will likely still have paperwork to complete and/or notice to give to an existing role. Communication is key for both parties at this time. Provide a touch-base to ensure the employee is ready prior to their start. If they have a question, comments, or concerns now would be a good time to address them. Make sure they know exactly what steps to take upon arrival on their first day. Who should they ask for? What should they bring along with them or what will be provided for them? There is no such thing as being too prepared for the first day.
I don’t need to say how important training is for a new hire, but I will. First things first, be extremely choosy with who you have training. This should ideally be a star employee that will not only give them a clear understanding of their job responsibilities but also lead by example for the type of employee that is successful in that role. Your training process should literally be laid out on a piece of paper in a bulleted list and given to the new hire as well as the employee conducting training. There should be no confusion regarding what exactly they need to learn before venturing on their own. Imagine they arrive on day one, and there is no process in place for who they are training with or what they are learning. If you didn’t need their help, you shouldn’t have hired them, and if you’re constantly scrambling to find their next task they will quickly feel like a bother and may likely resign to find a position in which they feel useful. If you are a manager or supervisor, you also need to lead by example. Do you arrive on time? Do you dress accordingly? How do you speak to people? Training a new hire is like raising a small child. They see and hear everything you do and will likely repeat it. So, carry yourself how you expect them to carry theirs.
There is a reason why virtually all companies have a 90-day policy in place which is typically used as a probationary period. This is a time to see firsthand how the candidates reacts to their new environment and if they can learn the information, you are teaching them. Not every employee will grasp information as quickly as others and you have to determine if that is a make or break for your company. Try giving them short-term goals to meet; review them, and offer direct feedback on what they did and did not do well to meet those goals. Do not pass the 90-day period off as unimportant. It’s arguably the most important 90-days in their existence with your company.
If you find yourself reviewing these suggestions and feel you could use some further assistance, please give us a call at (518) 275-4816 where we are happy to assist in finding your perfect fit as our recruiters are highly trained in finding a match for your company for the long-term.
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