5 Reasons Why Onboarding Is Important

Recognizing why onboarding is important is essential to creating an effective employee onboarding process for company success. Here’s what to consider.

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There are many valid reasons why onboarding is important for employees and employers alike. Whether an onboarding process is effective or lacking, it has lasting effects on the new hire’s performance and company’s hiring success. This article digs into the reasons why creating a great onboarding program is necessary for managing a workplace successfully.

Why is effective employee onboarding so important?

Creating a positive company culture of engaged team members within a diverse and inclusive workplace is a popular mission. Companies know the value of long-term employees who are high contributors to the bottom line and engaged in company goals. And much of what becomes the fabric of such an organization can be traced back, at least in part, to the company’s new hire onboarding experience.

1. New employees need support

New hires shouldn’t walk through the doors on their 1st day without knowing exactly what’s coming. Even if everyone is busy with their jobs, HR and hiring managers should carve out an onboarding agenda. They should also schedule frequent check-ins with the new employee. Among other things, new hires will need:

  • Assistance in learning the ins and outs of their new roles.
  • Help to understand the company’s policies.
  • Guidance for fulfilling training that’s required to perform well.

They also need to:

  • Start building rapport with their new team members.
  • Figure out how to integrate with the organizational culture.
  • Feel like they made a great decision when they accepted the job offer.

Many organizations understand these points. They commit to extensive onboarding programs that support new employees throughout the 1st few months of their tenure. Doing so can help alleviate a new hire’s trepidation, stress, and second-guessing of their competence in the new position.

2. Employees can acclimate at a good pace

Effective onboarding is critical to ensure that new employees are properly trained and ready to perform well. Tasks must be learned and done correctly as they progress toward increased responsibilities. To that end, acclimating at a reasonable pace can reduce overwhelm, confusion, and haste. A great onboarding program doesn’t overwhelm. Instead, it breaks learning up into manageable pieces within which everything gets covered and nothing is overlooked. This is important to help ensure:

  • Safety: Some industries have more safety concerns than others. Every employee should understand that personal, coworker, and customer safety is always a top priority. Workforce compliance regarding safety is important to everyone, therefore training should not be rushed.
  • Clarity of role and expectations: When goals, responsibilities, and timelines are clear, it results in fewer misunderstandings and less frustration. As new employees gain clarity, they become more confident, collaborative, and productive.
  • Development of coworker relationships: Building these early in the onboarding process can lead to higher employee engagement and employee retention.
  • Ultimate productivity objectives are reached.

3. HR compliance

HR must maintain standard compliance procedures for every employee. These items can be discussed with the new team member during the pre-boarding and/or onboarding period. The goal should be clarity about workplace processes and what courses of action to take should they need further assistance. For this and other reasons, HR should play a significant role in crafting, executing, and overseeing the employee onboarding process.

4. Employees become part of the company culture

An employee who starts a new job feeling like an outsider from day 1 won’t likely be motivated or productive for long. Employers may face this issue even more when it comes to remote workers.

Left unaddressed, the issue can lead to pervasive organizational problems, including diminishing employee engagement, morale, and relationships. But introducing new workers to their coworkers provides them opportunities to bond. This can help keep them excited and energized about their new job and role within the organization.

5. Increased employee retention

The 1st few months of a new hire’s job can determine whether they become a long-term employee or go elsewhere. Poor onboarding programs can be directly linked to increased employee turnover. Helping new hires feel welcome, involved with other employees, and well-trained for their roles increases employee engagement and new hire retention rates. A great onboarding process helps new team members realize their potential within their new position.

Employers who understand why onboarding is important build on a strong foundation

Creating a successful onboarding process isn’t easy. But it’s too important to let fall by the wayside or handle in a hit-or-miss manner. Recognizing why onboarding is important, and the foundational impact an effective employee onboarding process can have on a company’s health and success, has made it easier for stand-out organizations to prioritize building one that performs well.

For more along the HR and business management journey, count on tips, tools, and other resources from Workest by Zenefits.

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