Onboarding Best Practice - Agile Product Solutions
  • Onboarding Best Practice

For the average position, it takes 37 days from the moment the job is posted until the offer is accepted.  Figures vary, but the average cost-per-hire is above $10,000.  Companies lose almost one quarter of new hires before their one-year anniversary.  For some, it is as high as half of all new employees out the door before the first year is out.  Spending all that time and money in the hiring process is pointless if you’re losing half (or even a quarter) of your new employees.

According to the results of the 2012 Allied Workforce Mobility Survey, one third of employees fail to meet the company’s expectations for productivity.  And, while more than a quarter of the 500 respondents said it took a year or more for a new hire to reach full productivity, almost 60 percent reported that they do not track new-hire productivity at all.

Orientation and onboarding are not synonymous.  Orientation involves what most of us think of as taking place in the first one or two days at a new company.  It seems that a never-ending stack of paper with forms from gathering employee information to the I-9, payroll and direct deposit to benefits enrollment.  The department manager might introduce the new employee to co-workers, show him or her where the restroom and break room are located, and take the new employee to lunch.  For most companies, orientation and the illusion of onboarding stop here.

Onboarding best practices are often overlooked: one basic part of onboarding is coaching or mentoring for the new employee.  In the Allied survey, employee-manager relationship was listed as the top reason employees leave within the first year.  The second highest reason on the list was job performance, which could indicate a lack of training opportunities for new employees.

Best practices successful companies use in onboarding new employees:

1. Training and education – ongoing
2. Clear job titles and expectations
3. Coaching or mentoring program
4. Stay and Exit Interviews
5. Goal-setting with employee’s manager
6. Tracking retention rates to measure deficiencies and strengths
7. Internet-enabled support system

When considering an online onboarding solution, it is important to first consider what your company’s needs are.  Some features to consider:

1. New-employee portal – Employees can complete much of the paperwork that previously consumed a portion of the first day on the job
2. Forms/task management – Facilitates communication among departments
3. Seamless interface with other HR systems – Including applicant tracking system, HRIS, performance management, payroll.
4. Customized Employee Self Service – Portal can integrate with benefits enrollment.

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