Imagine companies investing heavily in recruiting great people and promptly allowing them to fend for themselves from their first day at work, with zero communication and a lack of strategy to help them succeed. It sounds unthinkable, yet it is sadly true. It is a problem that is entirely avoidable if more organizations developed onboarding programs that mitigate disengagement, high turnover and the enormous costs associated with re-hiring.
As industries of every description compete for the best and brightest, the plethora of evidence available confirms the link between low retention and ineffective onboarding programs. This ought to serve as sufficient motivation to welcome new employees with open arms and a viable plan.
The fact remains that a “fly by the seat of our pants” philosophy is the common approach. Consider this proactive approach noted in Aberdeen Survey: 83 percent of the highest performing organizations began on-boarding before the new hire’s first day on the job. Preparing in advance for a new recruit’s arrival by providing them with essential information/paperwork regarding pay and benefits, arranging his or her work area, co-ordinating a particular orientation plan for the first 60 – 90 days that is immediately accessible for your new hire demonstrates your investment in their success.
How is it possible that millions of dollars are wasted in re-hiring employees and executives when departures could have been avoided? The explanation is simple: The absence of an effective on-boarding strategy.
Wrong Way # 1: No Budget
An Allied Workforce Mobility Survey revealed that 35% of companies spend nothing on onboarding! In contrast, consider the high cost of employee turnover versus implementing a structured onboarding plan that can mitigate replacement costs by almost 70%.
Solution: An effective recruitment strategy necessitates a financial commitment and deliberate budget allocation. Ensure that funds are earmarked for on-boarding as part of your overall talent management strategy.
Wrong Way # 2: No Time
A surefire way to create an immediate, negative impact on a new employee’s experience is to spend minimal or no time to explain the basics, or to make the individual feel welcome. In addition, bombarded him or her with so much information that it becomes virtually impossible to digest in a time appropriate manner, let alone get up to speed, only serves to make the learning curve even more difficult.
Solution: Develop a structured orientation program that provides a new employee with a clear, well thought-out and practical guide to your organization, the individual’s role, key players, as well as an outline of achievable milestones for the first year.
Wrong Way # 3: No Interest
There is nothing worse than starting a new position only to find that managers and team members are too busy to provide support, care and direction. All too often, a new employee’s sense of excitement and positive expectation quickly dissipate when the on-boarding process is relegated to a lower organizational priority. In short, this creates a transactional ‘burden” on workplace relationships.
Solution: Practice preventative maintenance. Maximizing a hire’s on-boarding experience will positively impact employee engagement, retention, as well as the perception that new talent will have regarding your culture and organization when assessing employment opportunities.