Onboarding is one of the most important elements of the employment lifecycle. But it’s too often relegated to an afterthought that leaves employees frustrated – and at worst, looking for the fastest route to the exit.
In this series of posts, NTT DATA is exploring the enablers and opportunities to improve the onboarding experience.
In our first post, we met an experienced hire, Sam, and followed her through the pre-boarding process. A positive, considered experience left Sam feeling enthusiastic and assured about starting her new role.
Now comes the next phase – the induction – which begins the moment an employee walks into the office on their first day. During the induction phase, new joiners are still deciding what they think and how they feel about the organisation they have just joined.
Let us look at how businesses can make a great and long-lasting impression – through a lens of culture, workplace and technology.
Induction strategies vary between companies based on their industries, objectives and corporate values. However, there are some best practices that should always be considered and appropriately covered by every organisation. This includes a strong sense of community and a right communication approach.
In our experience, what people really want from onboarding is to meet their fellow colleagues and feel welcome. Sometimes a friendly smile or a helpful co-worker makes all the difference.
We need to move beyond outdated organisation chart introductions – and towards a more interactive, personal experience for the employee.
Take something as simple as meeting their line manager on the first day. To the line manager it's just a short meeting, but to the new starter, it’s a warm welcome, a familiar face and the beginning of a new relationship.
Gaining a good understanding of the workplace is key to making employees feel comfortable and at ease.
Although it might seem basic, not knowing how the seating is organised or how to use the printers can cause unnecessary stress for a new starter. This can be easily fixed by providing clear and accessible information.
It is equally important to ensure the induction area is a positive space that reflects your culture, making new employees excited and energised.
It is increasingly important for organisations to consider the role that technology plays in their induction process.
We need to move beyond our traditional understanding of technology (a desktop computer and a headset) and think about what really matters to an individual joining an organisation.
Inductions should no longer be seen as one size fits all. Each employee joining your organisation will have different technological needs, strengths and goals.
Digital resources, competency management features and mobile learning are some of the tools that can equip your new starters with the knowledge and skills they need to become effective in their roles.
Growing in the role
Sam has now passed her probation – a perfect reason for a team celebration!
A great induction has meant that in a short period of time she's been able to connect with her team and is already growing within her role.
However, onboarding doesn't end there. The remaining months of the first year are equally important for a new starter.
In our next post we will look at the extended onboarding experience, where Sam continues to build the foundation for her career in a new organisation.
Bethan Trundley, Justine Healey, Martyna Suchodolska and Natalie Porter are Business Consultants at NTT DATA UK.
The team focuses on employee experience and brings together strong industry experience from various sectors, including Telecoms, Public Services, Insurance and Financial Services.