Onboarding is about more than bringing new hires into the company; it’s about welcoming new members to the team! Excellent onboarding encourages top-tier practice by focusing on people.
New employees want to know, aside from what they’re supposed to be doing, where they fit in and how they can become part of the workplace culture. When everyone understands why they’re wanted on the team and feels that they’re genuinely part of it, it becomes easier to deliver their best work.
Working in virtual environments can present a challenge for new employees, as the opportunities for forging bonds with co-workers are different from what one might expect in person. While chats in lounges and lobbies might not be available, there are still plenty of ways for people to bond, like ensuring that onboarding and training include time for employees to relax and get to know each other. Regular, casual check-ins with managers and mentors are instrumental in helping employees feel connected, even when working from home.
Onboarding sessions are the perfect opportunity to give new employees an idea of the workplace culture they’re entering, both in terms of how they can comfortably interact with co-workers and managers and how to embody best what the company stands for in their work. By showing employees what to expect from the get-go—how information can best be communicated to peers and managers, how exciting ideas can be brought to life, and how company values can be demonstrated in output—everybody gets to be on the same page, right from the start.
At Inspiro, our onboarding program is particularly shaped by two critical elements. First, the manager responsible for hiring new people for their team actively participates in the process. Second, we make goal-setting a focal point, with fresh hires and their manager collaborating on a mutually-agreeable plan to give them the best chance of success in performance evaluations and throughout their careers.
The most important thing to remember with onboarding is that it’s all about giving new employees a warm welcome to a place (even if virtual) and a community that is excited to have them. Creating a fulfilling, easy-to-understand onboarding experience should be less a matter of “This is what you should do” and more one of “This is who we are – welcome aboard!”