The Importance of Having a Thorough Onboarding Guide

By: First Union


The Importance of Having a Thorough Onboarding Guide

Is your onboarding process leading your new employees to a future of success and satisfaction? If your onboarding process takes less than a month, the answer may be “no.”

69% of employees who have excellent onboarding are more likely to stay with a company for more than 3 years. Meanwhile, 20% of employee turnover happens in the first 45 days.

Hiring new employees is expensive and time-consuming. That’s why you should have the best onboarding plan to retain the exceptional employees you hire.

Let’s look closer at how important it is to have a good onboarding guide and tips for creating one.

Onboarding Leads to Greater Retention Rates

Businesses with a standardized onboarding process have 50% better employee retention than those without formal onboarding programs.

That’s because formal onboarding helps new employees with a variety of things. It helps new employees:

  • Feel more welcome
  • Understand their responsibilities
  • Know where to turn for help
  • Understand where they can have a future with the company

Creating a standard onboarding process can be time-consuming at first. However, once you have a program in place, you can use it for all new employees. Employee retention is crucial to your bottom line, so invest in a solid onboarding plan now to keep employees happy.

Employees Who Receive Onboarding Feel More Connected

91% of employees who go through an effective onboarding program feel strong connectedness at work. That’s compared to only 29% of employees who don’t experience effective onboarding.

It’s important to have employees who feel connected to your organization. Connected employees are more productive and satisfied. They’re also more likely than those who feel disconnected to stick around longer.

Onboarding Provides New Hires with Goals

60% of companies don’t set any goals for new employees. Without clear goals, how can people know whether they’re doing what’s expected of them?

Onboarding can help provide new employees with clear goals. This helps people know what you want and what they’re doing what they’re supposed to. Don’t leave your new employees wondering whether they’re doing their job right.

Providing new employees with clear goals helps them feel more included and lets them see the future. It’s hard to picture a future with a company when you don’t know what you’re working toward.

How Long Should Onboarding Last?

Many companies that do offer onboarding have programs that last 2 weeks or less. That’s a mistake. The best onboarding programs check-in with new employees for the first year of their employment.

Why should onboarding last a year?

As new employees start to learn their role in the company, new questions will continue to pop up. Do they know where to turn with questions? Do they feel anybody cares about their job satisfaction?

You should check in with new employees every day the first week, then once a week for the first few months. After that, you should still touch base with new employees at least once a month for the first year.

The longer an onboarding process lasts, the more productive and satisfied new employees are. Invest a little more time in employees to encourage them to spend more time with your company.

Onboarding Mistakes

What are the most common onboarding mistakes? You only get one single opportunity to make a great first impression. Avoid these onboarding mistakes.

  • Not Setting Clear Expectations
  • New employees want to know exactly what you expect from them. Without clear expectations, they will be confused and stressed out.
  • New employees want to impress their boss. How can they do that if they’re unsure of what their boss expects from them?
  • Not Having a Strong Process

What should your onboarding process include? A formal onboarding process should include things like:

  • A plan
  • Goals
  • A checklist
  • Check-ins

Both you and the new employee should know what to expect during the onboarding process. Once you develop an onboarding process, you may need to keep tweaking it with time.

Not Asking for Feedback

Is your onboarding process effective? How do you know?

The best way to gauge the effectiveness of your onboarding process is to get feedback from people going through it. Each time you check in with an employee to see how they’re doing, ask about the onboarding process. Use their feedback to improve the process for the next person, and never keep striving to improve.

Having too Strict of a Process

While it’s important to have a strong, predictable process, each employee is different. Your onboarding process should have some flexibility to account for that.

For example, some employees want more feedback, while others want less. Imposing too strict of a process can leave people feeling like they’re getting too much or not enough feedback.

Waiting until Employees Start

Did you know your onboarding process should start before your employee’s first day?

Connect with them before they start so they know where to go and what to expect. Tell them about the company’s history and culture. You could even send a welcome package with company swag.

Another great way to start onboarding early is to get electronic signatures on things like the W-4 and I-9. The more paperwork that you can get out of the way, the more you can focus on integrating the new employee.

Need Funding to Develop Your Onboarding Guide?

As you can see, it’s well worth the time, effort, and expense of creating a strong onboarding process. If you can’t find room in the budget to develop a program, maybe you should consider getting a loan.

First Union Lending has business 9 loan types to help with any of your lending needs. A business loan to fund the creation of an onboarding process can pay for itself with future employee retention.

First Union has lending specialists standing by to help you find the right loan. Just click here or call 863-825-5626 to get started.

You could get money as soon as the same day you apply. Better than that, applying for a loan won’t affect your credit.

Contact First Union Lending today to fund the development of a crucial onboarding guide.

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