Frontline: Onboarding

An Essential Process for Employee Retention and Long-Term Employee Success

Effective and purposeful onboarding of new hires has consistently helped companies retain employees and build stronger company cultures. A well thought out onboarding program engages employees and creates workers that are committed to the company’s success. This helps retain new hires by making them feel like a member of the team.

Statistics compiled by Click Boarding, an onboarding software company in Eden Prairie, Minnesota, provide insight into how essential a dedicated onboarding program can be to the success of a new hire:

  • 69 percent of employees are more likely to stay with a company for three years if they experienced great onboarding.
  • New employees who went through a structured onboarding program were 58 percent more likely to be with the organization after three years.
  • Organizations with a standard onboarding process experience 50 percent greater new-hire productivity.

Finding and hiring good employees requires the investment of a great deal of time and money, and like all investments, employers should take steps to protect their new hires by working towards long-term retention. Currently, employee retention is one of the most difficult aspects of business for companies. Employees have a tendency to jump from company to company as they look for more money, a “better” boss or a different company atmosphere.

The question is, how do we convince a good employee to stay with our company? One of the most effective methods for increasing retention, is focusing on onboarding. Onboarding is the process of helping new hires adjust to social and performance aspects of their new jobs quickly and smoothly.

It’s a long-term process that begins before your new employee arrives and continues for at least the first six months, and, ideally, through the first year. The idea is to improve your new employees’ initial experience working in your organization.

By engaging in this process, you jump start their ability to contribute to your organization’s goals and increase the likelihood that your employees will stay. The same amount of effort put forth for hiring a potential candidate needs to be invested in onboarding a new hire as well.

When people think of onboarding, the word “orientation” usually comes to mind. Yes, orientation is where new hires fill out important documentation, sign up for benefits, and receive the company tour. However, that’s not what onboarding actually is. Employee onboarding introduces new hires to the important aspects of the company: values, culture, and people.

According to a report from the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM), there are four essential components that should be included in onboarding, referred to as the four C’s:

  • Compliance: Providing basic legal information and training on rules and regulations.
  • Clarification: Clarifying roles and expectations for new employees.
  • Culture: Introducing new employees to organizational norms.
  • Connection: Helping new employees establish networks and relationships.

The Onboarding Checklist is designed to help you plan for a new employee’s arrival. Once your employee starts, you can work together to complete the checklist. Keep in mind – this checklist is a template. You should customize it to fit your needs.

Onboarding Checklist