How to Plan, Implement, and Improve your Employee Onboarding Process
What’s in this article
Stage 1: Planning the onboarding experience
Stage 2: Onboarding the newcomer
Stage 3: Reviewing the onboarding experience
Stage 4: Improving the onboarding experience
The Importance of Employee Onboarding
Onboarding has the power to make a huge difference to your employee retention. It’s the perfect opportunity to show your new hire everything from your company values and culture to the expectations of their new role.
Good onboarding plans take a lot of time, and it’s even harder when onboarding remotely. A whopping 69% of managers find onboarding painstakingly time-consuming, and nearly half of them describe the process as frustrating.
of managers find onboarding painstakingly time-consuming
describe the process as frustrating
We understand your pain, so what can we do to help? At Softstart, our goal is to make onboarding more engaging and accessible, so we designed a framework to help.
Let’s introduce the Onboarding Loop Framework and it comes in four parts:
Planning the Onboarding Experience
Onboarding the newcomer
Reviewing the Onboarding Experience
Improving the Onboarding Experience
If you follow these four steps, you’ll be an onboarding pro in no time!
Stage 1: Planning the Onboarding Experience
Before creating an onboarding journey, as an HR you have to define the role and responsibilities of the new hire. These responsibilities can include the scope of the job, daily tasks, delivery milestones, and expected performance.
When planning this step, some simple questions you can ask yourself are:
What are the objectives here?
What are the targeted results we want from this particular onboarding experience?
Does this onboarding experience differ from ones we’ve done in the past? How so?
Once you’ve answered these questions, you’ll be well on your way to creating your onboarding plan.
The next step is to decide the length of your plan. While there’s no golden rule, we recommend that you have onboarding activities throughout the first three months with one-on-one meetings every month for up to a year.
Psst! 👀 Experiencing blank page syndrome? Look through Softstart’s pre-made activities and templates to help you on your way!
Balance is key! Make sure you include team building activities with your role-specific activities. Fostering connections is a great way to improve productivity and make your new hire feel welcome.
Now that you have an idea of what activities are important, you can start planning your onboarding.
Stage 2: Onboarding the newcomer
Congrats! 🎉 You’ve made it to the stage where you and your new hire can reap the benefits of your planning labour. You can monitor your employee’s progress through Softstart to make sure they’re meeting all their goals and that they understand their tasks.
Throughout your newcomer’s onboarding journey, remember to collect feedback! Your first onboarding does not have to be perfect, and the feedback you get from your hire can help you tailor your plan to make it the best it can be.
You can measure their engagement through Softstart, but we encourage you to also have one-on-one meetings with them to see how they’re doing.
Good news 🗞 Your plans aren’t set in stone. You can edit and perfect them any time you want. Make some templates now so you can customize them later on.
Stage 3: Reviewing the Onboarding Experience
Once you’ve onboarded your new hire, you can start to look for opportunities to improve future onboarding journeys. This is where their feedback comes in handy. You can evaluate the feedback from Softstart and from your new hire to get a holistic picture of your strongest and weakest spots.
Pro tip 💡 Organize brainstorming sessions to help generate new ideas so you can improve the onboarding experience!
While reviewing the onboarding experience might seem like an extra step, we highly recommend it. The more work you put in now, the less work you’ll have to do later.
Stage 4: Improving the Onboarding Experience
You did it! You’ve made it full circle. Now that you’ve successfully created a plan, onboarded an employee, and collected feedback, it’s time to put all that you’ve learned to good use.
Take note 📝 Change is inevitable. Embrace it to make the most of your onboarding!
Use this opportunity to tweak your templates, add or change activities, and take stock of your process. Maybe you want to add more video introductions so your new hire can get to know their coworkers, or maybe you need to schedule more check-ins with your newcomer. Whatever the case may be, making changes can help you fine-tune your onboarding journeys.
That’s it! Now that you know the Onboarding Loop, you can use it to make and improve all your future onboarding plans.