HR Team’s Guide to Successful Remote Employee Onboarding
Did you know that close to 20% of employees leave within 45 days of being hired? That’s because the recruiting and onboarding missed the mark.
In the end, your business suffers because you hired the wrong person and you have to turn around and replace them quickly.
Onboarding is more important to get right, especially with remote employees. Yes, employees love the freedom, but they also want to feel like they’re part of the company.
When you master remote employee onboarding, you make sure that all employees feel like they’re part of the same team. Employees stay longer and you’ll have more stability in your company.
Read on to learn how you can have a virtual onboarding process that makes employees loyal to your organization.
In their spare time, you may even wish to organise something a little more personal if those employee birthday don’t mind coming out for a social event once in a while. Perhaps if it’s an employee’s birthday, consider throwing them a little party or gathering, as this will be sure to make them feel welcome and appreciated!
- The Onboarding Mindset
There’s a difference between what you know and what you actually practice. For instance, most HR professionals say that onboarding should take about three months.
Yet, in practice, about 21% of companies give new employees about a month to adjust to the new environment. A quarter of companies take a day to onboard new employees.
That simply isn’t enough time to make an employee feel welcome. You need to adjust your mindset and be prepared to onboard remote employees for about a year.
Of course, this doesn’t mean that you hold their hands through every project. You do check in with them regularly to make sure they have the support that they need.
- The Administrative Tasks
The companies that take a day to onboard use that for administrative tasks. They might take the new hire out to lunch to make them feel welcome.
The administrative tasks revolve around paperwork. You collect the employee’s I-9, copy their passport or driver’s license, and W-4.
The employee should also have a chance to review all employee policies and be introduced to various department heads.
- Have a Training and Onboarding Plan
The hiring manager and HR contact should get together to create a training and onboarding plan. This includes all of the tasks the employee is expected to perform. Therefore it is important to get employee onboarding procedures done right in order to retain new talent. This is especially important with remote employees too. Yes, employees love their freedom, but they also want to feel like they’re part of the company.
The hiring manager should have a plan for the employees to learn the different systems they need to use. You also want to make sure that the training materials are easy to access. For example, if you are determined to use a personality test to figure out your employee’s strengths and weaknesses and route of progression as they join your company, make sure to decide which you will opt to use based on the purpose for which you require the test and its accessibility. You can check out this comparison of the DISC vs. Myers Briggs test to point you in the right direction.
The plan should be reviewed with the remote employee, so everyone is on the same page.
- Make Introductions
The first day at the office usually includes a tour of the office where new hires are introduced to other employees and departments.
You don’t have the luxury with remote workers. You can schedule time with small groups of employees to hop on a video call and welcome the new hire.
You can continue to make introductions through messaging tools, but that’s impersonal.
- Assign a Mentor
Who are the people in your company that are stellar employees? Those are employees that you want to have to mentor new hires.
A mentor is an employee that you pair with a new hire. They can be a point of contact for any issues and help employees feel welcomed and supported.
You can and should offer a paid incentive to get these employees to become mentors. They can meet with remote employees one-on-one.
- Organize Personal Connection Time
The two things that remote employees miss are the water cooler and break room conversations. These things might seem like a waste of time, but they are what form the deep connections between employees.
Once those deep connections are established, it becomes harder for employees to leave.
The challenge is creating those spontaneous moments for conversation. What you can do is build in personal time for remote employees to connect and chat.
This can be through a separate chat room or you can schedule group calls with employees.
- Create a Remote Employee Onboarding Checklist
You have a lot to keep track of and manage for onboarding one employee. Multiply that by several new hires and you have your hands full.
You have to stay sane and make sure that nothing falls through the cracks. That’s why a remote employee onboarding checklist is so helpful.
You can have a checklist for each new hire and make sure that they have everything they need.
- Use Software for Organization and Speed
It’s likely that they experienced an issue where they didn’t have email for a month or didn’t have direct deposit for the first few pay periods.
That can be frustrating and make new hires. You’re also sending the message that they aren’t a priority.
You can reverse that by being organized. You can take your checklist and upload it into a software suite that helps you organize the onboarding process. A program like WorkBright makes it easy to notify other departments so the new hire so they’re set up before day one.
You can also have employees send in their documentation prior to the official start date. New hires will be impressed by the speed of the onboarding process.
Master Remote Employee Onboarding
The onboarding process matters to your bottom line. When you’re dealing with remote employees, the process becomes more important.
You need to make sure that your remote employee onboarding process is smooth and fast. You want to make sure that you get the administrative tasks out of the way so you can focus on supporting the employee.
The longer you make the onboarding process, the more likely the employee will stay with your company. Take a look at the latest posts on this site for more insights to help you grow your business.