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When Does Onboarding Fall Down?

4min read

Stop me if you’ve heard this one before:

Your fresh, newly-minted hire walks into the office to begin their first day at work. They have a good head on their shoulders, rocked the interview, and look to be a perfect fit for your organisation. And then, 45 days later, they’ve turned in their two weeks’ notice and you’re back on the lookout for a new employee.

If this has ever happened to you, don’t worry you’re not the only one.

According to Urbanbound20% of new employees will end up leaving within the first 45 days of employment, 50% of all new senior hires will fail within 18 months into their new position, and it costs an organisation anywhere between $3,000 to $18,000 to replace an employee.

And the worst thing is that all of this is easily avoidableif an organisation has the proper onboarding process in place.

In this article, we’ll be going over the three most common mistakes that cause onboarding processes to fail and new hires to walk away. 

All you have is a stack of papers

If your current onboarding process consists of giving your new hire a stack of papers to fill out and read through, then you’re still stuck in the stone ages in terms of onboarding.

The problem with trying to communicate a large amount of instructions through a bunch of physical files is that important information is bound to get missed. Research showsthat having a large amount of physical files to sort through not only drastically reduces productivity and creative thinking, but also increases workplace stress.

With this style of onboarding it’s easy for new hires to get confused, for things to get missed, and to feel like they aren’t valued. On employer-side, this also creates problems such as being unable to properly track and measure a new hire’s progress for example.

The best way to avoid this problem entirely is to simply bring your onboarding processes up to the 21stcentury by embracing digital technology. By taking advantage of digital tools you can create a more interactive, engaging and streamlined onboarding process that delivers the right information, and training, at the right time.

New hires are left to their own devices

Imagine going to a party where you know absolutely no one, and then being forced to go to that party over and over again regardless of how you feel. Can you imagine the amount of resentment and frustration you would feel?

Well, this is exactly what happens when a new employee is left to their own devices.

According to Equifax, one of the biggest reasons why new hires leave is that they under appreciated, unprepared, and that they’re not being valued.

Anytime a new hire walks into their new job they have a wealth of information to engage with and process. Not only do they need to learn how to do their job as quickly as possible, but they also have to learn how to navigate the intricacies of the company culture and its leadership.

The most critical time for a new hire is the first several months on the job. During this time it should be a business’s top priority to helping the new hire get acclimated as soon as possible.

This can be achieved by personally introducing a new employee to their new co-workers, clearly communicating the company’s vision and value, as well as making sure that how the new hire fits into the organisation’s bigger picture.

Noone is taking responsibility for training

By far the greatest hallmark of a poor onboarding process is when there is no one taking responsibility for it.

For many organisations it’s not uncommon for new hires to be bounced from one manager to the next for different parts of the training. The trouble with this style of onboarding is that one employee can have a drastically different experience to another, and there is no one directly responsible for managing their training.

With no one responsible for the success or failure of the onboarding process how can you possibly expect a new hire’s training to go smoothly?

In order to create a successful onboarding program every business needs an onboarding manager. An onboarding manager, as you may have guessed from the title, is someone whose primary responsibility in ensuring that the company is providing a comprehensive and thoughtful onboarding process.

They understand that by having a well thought-out onboarding process they’ll be able to save their organisation potentially hundreds of thousands of dollars, and ensure that new employees are as productive as possible.

By having someone take responsibility for their entire onboarding process you can ensure that your new employees, and therefore your business, is as successful as it can possibly be.

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