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How to Set up New Hires for Success

When you hire someone new, you hope they’ll continue to be part of the team for a long time. But with a bad training program, you may lose employees faster than you can find new ones. A good onboarding plan is essential to any company’s employee retention strategy. It’s your chance to get new employees up to speed on the company culture and expectations of their new role so they can hit the ground running from day one. When your new employees are set up for success, your business can succeed too. In this article, we’ll go over why thorough training is essential, the five phases of a good onboarding program, and a few tips for how to train new employees. 

Why is Good Training Important for Employee Retention?

The first few weeks of a new job are crucial to the retention of new hires. They could leave almost immediately if you don’t adequately prepare them for their roles. It’s estimated that up to 20% of turnover occurs during the first 45 days of employment. This volatility not only makes it harder for your business to function seamlessly, but it can also affect your bottom line. It’s costly to recruit and hire new talent every few weeks.

 

Learning how to train new employees can make a massive difference. A recent report from the Brandon Hall Group found that organizations with excellent onboarding processes improved new hire retention by 82% and productivity by more than 70%. Employees must understand the company’s culture and values, as well as their roles and responsibilities. New hires will feel more prepared and engaged from their first day onward. The more confident they are in performing their tasks from day one, the less likely they’ll be to quit once the honeymoon period ends.  

What are the Five Phases of the Onboarding Process?

An effective onboarding process can be broken down into five distinct phases. These include:

  • Pre-Boarding
  • Orientation
  • Job-specific training
  • Manager meeting
  • Transitioning into the new role

Let’s delve a little deeper into what to include during each of these phases.

Pre-Boarding

Pre-boarding is the first step of the onboarding process and occurs before the actual onboarding takes place. The goal of pre-boarding is to make sure that new hires are prepared for their first days. To do this, send them a welcome email or letter congratulating them on their new position and providing the information they’ll need to get started. The goals of the pre-boarding process are to:

  • Set up all user accounts
  • Prepare their workstation, desk, or office
  • Give the new hire any information they need for their first day, including what documents to bring, parking details, the dress code, and more
  • Inform the rest of the staff about the new team member 

Orientation

Orientation is a formal process that the HR department should lead. It’s an opportunity for new hires to learn about company culture, policies, and procedures in a safe environment where they can ask any questions they may have. It’s also a time for them to get acquainted with their physical space (including equipment) and complete any paperwork that needs to be done prior to starting work. During orientation, you’ll:

  • Complete any remaining new hire paperwork, including tax forms and direct deposit forms, and review the employee handbook
  • Discuss workplace policies on working hours, PTO requests, lunch breaks, and more
  • Give a tour of the workspace, highlighting important locations like their desk, breakroom, and restrooms 

Job-Specific Training

Job-specific training is tailored to the role and employee. It should cover what the job is, how to do it, and how to get it done well. You should also provide information on the tools, processes, and procedures they’ll use daily. This type of training usually uses a combination of one-on-one discussions, reading materials, employee training videos, and worksheets. Discuss how their role fits into the team and helps the business achieve its objectives.

Manager Meeting and Setting Expectations

The manager meeting is a great way to build a relationship with your new hire and set expectations for their time at the company. They should also discuss any potential issues so that they can work out suitable solutions together. By the end of this one-on-one meeting with their supervisor, the new employee should know:

  • What’s expected of them
  • How to get in touch with their manager
  • How to contact HR, other departments, and anyone else they may need help from

Transitioning to the New Role and Setting Goals

By the time you’ve completed all of your training, new hires should be confident and capable of starting their jobs immediately. They should clearly understand their role and responsibilities, as well as how to get help if they need it. This is also a great time to work on setting short-term and long-term goals within the company.  

Tips for Effective Training and Onboarding

Training new employees can be a complex process. Using the five-phase structure suggested above can help you stay organized and avoid skipping any crucial information. To make your training program even more successful, read more on how to train new employees!

Start Preparing Before Their First Day

Pre-boarding is one of the most critical phases in the training process. Even after accepting an offer, workers can still change their minds; you must work to keep them engaged even before their official first day. Be sure to plan your onboarding process well in advance to reduce stress for everyone. Schedule which tasks you’ll complete on which days, and don’t forget to send out the welcome email!

Streamline Paperwork and Use Electronic Documents

A good portion of the onboarding process is filling out paperwork. A lot of it is required by law, so you may not be able to reduce the amount of paperwork you’ll need to complete. However, you can streamline the process by sending over electronic documents before the new hire’s start date. This can save a ton of time on orientation day. Plus, new hires can easily save and access copies of their documents to review at any time.

Go Slow and Give Them Time to Adjust

When new hires arrive, it’s tempting to fill their days with work. But giving them the time they need to adjust to the new environment and responsibilities is essential. Don’t overload your new hires with work right away. During the first few weeks, they’ll probably suffer from information overload from all the employee training videos they’ve watched. If possible, start by giving them small or simple tasks until they’re more comfortable. Follow their cues moving forward. If they appear to be picking things up quickly and are eager to move on to more complicated tasks, you can speed up the training and introduce more advanced projects. 

Provide a Mentor or Coworker to Shadow

When setting up your new hires for success, it’s a good idea to provide them with a mentor or a more experienced coworker they can shadow. This can help ease their transition into the workplace. A mentor can act as a guide and teacher throughout their first few months on the job and will help them learn the ropes of their new position. They’ll also get to know the company, its people, processes, and culture more quickly than they would otherwise. Having someone who knows what they’re doing will make things easier for everyone involved in your department—especially if something goes wrong! 

Create High-Quality Training Videos

Videos are an excellent training tool. They can help keep new hires engaged, improve information retention, and make complicated topics and tools easier to understand. Many companies choose to create their own employee training videos using high-quality cameras, a screen recorder, and editing software. Hence, they have complete control over the content of the video.

 

A screen recorder is an incredible tool for making high-quality videos. Whether you’re producing a tutorial on how to use software or recording a live one-on-one session for later review, an excellent screen recorder is critical. Many screen recorders also allow you to edit your videos to cut unnecessary clips, add voice-over recordings, and include arrows, text, and other graphics. The end results are engaging and informative employee training videos that will keep your new hire’s attention throughout the training process. 

Don't Forget to Train Them on Your Company's Values and Culture

Some businesses get so focused on job-related training that they skip right over crucial information on the actual organization. One of the first things you should do with new hires is training them on company culture and values. This is an integral part of onboarding, as it helps new employees understand how they can fit into your organization’s culture and what they should expect from their coworkers. You can incorporate information about company culture into a variety of training modules:

  • Provide an overview of your organization’s history, mission statement, and major objectives
  • Explain how the company operates in terms of structure, leadership roles, and decision-making processes
  • Discuss expectations for interpersonal relationships and how employees should treat each other 

Spread Out Training Over a Few Days or Weeks

When you first begin to train your new hires, remember that you don’t need to do everything at once. This can be overwhelming for them, actually making it harder for them to retain all the information they need. It’s best to spread the training over a few days or weeks. This will give the employees time to take in what they have learned and practice their new skills before moving on to the next task. It also allows them time to ask questions that may come up as they work through each phase of the training process.

Encourage Questions and Opinions

It can be hard for new hires to feel comfortable asking questions, especially if they’re unsure of how much they should share their opinions or ideas. Encourage them to speak up and share their questions and thoughts; make it clear that you want them to share, and you’ll actively listen to their queries and concerns.

 

You can also help new hires by setting aside time for one-on-one conversations where they can ask questions about the company, its goals, and their role in helping achieve those goals. If a challenge arises during these conversations— perhaps an employee isn’t sure how to prioritize their workload— you can work through these issues together.

Check-in Frequently

As the manager or HR representative, it’s vital to check in with your new hire regularly. You want to ensure they are comfortable in their new role and have everything they need to succeed– even if it’s a few months after their first day. During your regular check-ins, you should ask:

  • How are they feeling in their position?
  • If they have any new questions or concerns
  • If they have any feedback on the training process (so you can refine and improve for the next new hire)

 

The first step in effective onboarding is to ensure you’re prepared with the processes and tools needed to train your new hire and keep them in their position for many years to come. A good onboarding process should start with the hiring manager and continue through the employee’s first few weeks. The training will help them become familiar with their new company, develop skills they’ll need in their position, and build relationships with key people on their team.

 

The most critical component of a successful onboarding process is you! You’re the one who will be there every step of the way to help them through their transition, set the tone for their experience at your company, and help them build strong relationships within your organization. Your own enthusiasm will inspire others; if you sound excited about working at the company, they’ll be excited too!

 

We hope this article has given you some ideas on how to train new employees and some procedures and tools, like employee training videos, that will help you throughout the process. To learn more about using a screen recorder to create engaging and effective onboarding materials, visit us at FlashBack today. 

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