Improve the Employee Experience with a Great Onboarding Process

Looking for tips for onboarding your remote employees?  Looking for ideas to personalize the new hire process?  Wondering why GREAT onboarding matters?

If you are like every other HR manager, you are drowning in paperwork, fighting with your Controller over costs from software that doesn’t work (as advertised), or wondering if you are compliant with the latest laws.  This article will provide answers to the questions above and more! We are going to share steps to creating a program for onboarding your remote employees in less than 30 minutes.

Get the Fully-Interactive Onboarding Template for New Hires


Why GREAT Onboarding Matters

The onboarding process is a good time to make a great first impression. Some results your organization will see from a successful hire include:

  • A happy employee with a sense of belonging
  • Increased rates in Retention and Employee Engagement
  • Less Turnover

Employees with a great onboarding experience are more likely to still be at your company 3 months post-hire date.  Making a good impression will lessen turnover with many employees as many make the decision to stay within their first 6 months and some within their first 45 days!

Getting ahead of the employee’s first day by sending out paperwork is a GREAT idea.  Doing so will free you up so that you can devote more time to the employee on the employee’s first day as well as focus on task management for the employee. This will create a happy, welcoming experience for the new hire and will increase the likelihood of retention and engagement. In turn, this results in less stress on the HR professional and overall profitability for the company.

Get the Onboarding Checklist that saves you time

To Automate or Not to Automate

The first step to creating a great onboarding program is to use technology, when possible.  There are multiple reasons for using software to streamline some (or all) of your manual onboarding processes.  Did you know that automation of the onboarding program results in 16% higher retention for new hires?  We’ve heard some of the reasons for the need to automate and support HR―painful, messy, complex, time-consuming, costly, etc.  Maybe you can add a few reasons of your own…

Nonetheless, most employers are still onboarding manually.  Their manual process looks something like this:

  • Harry in HR decides to hire Nelly New Hire.
  • Harry prepares a new hire packet with an offer letter.
  • Harry sends an e-mail to Nelly with a PDF copy of the offer letter.
  • Nelly opens the e-mail.
  • Nelly downloads, prints, signs, scans, and uploads the offer letter.
  • Nelly e-mails it back to Harry.
  • Harry opens e-mail and checks for completion, prints, and files.
  • Harry updates HR records, payroll, and benefits.

And, this is just one small part of the process. It goes on and on like this―with I-9, W-4, NDA, benefits, 401(k), employee handbook, training guide, direct deposit, etc.  Not only is this process time-consuming, but you can see how things can slip through the cracks, right?


It’s Working (Pretty Well) So Why Change?

Nowadays, we do just about everything online and usually on our phones. From shopping to booking travel, so much is now done with little effort.  So, why not onboarding of employees? With many companies hiring employees to work remotely, you almost have no choice but to create a new, and better, process.

There are many ways to automate all (or part) of your onboarding process.  You can use GoCo or another HRIS software, DocuSign, turn on options on your payroll system, piece together different systems already in use, or create your own process.  The options are numerous.

Creating a more automated process will:

  • Eliminate reliance on paper documents
  • Create more time for strategy, culture, and creativity for HR
  • Provide a better New Hire experience
  • Improve new hire engagement and productivity as well as increased retention

11 Star Experience

Whether your process is manual or automated, the end goal is the same.  Taking the step to personalize the onboarding experience is a great way to create a happy, productive employee. To do so, we must think about the experience from the new employee’s point of view.

One way is to aspire to create an 11-star experience.  Eleven stars?  Is that even possible?  We think it is.  In fact, here are a couple of ideas to add that personal touch to your onboarding program:

Send a Video w/ Offer Letter
Sending the offer letter with a video link can be that extra touch that pushes the candidate toward accepting the offer.  Who wouldn’t want to receive a personalized video message expressing the excitement of the HR Manager or Recruiter for you to join the company?

First Day
Presenting the new employee with a digital card signed by the team, a welcome basket, or even a surprise party on his/her first day will make the employee feel special and help him/her feel secure about their choice in employment.

Find ways to make your onboarding process stand out. You want to reassure employees they made the right choice and their future with your company is nothing but bright.

Starting a new job is stressful. It is extremely important to create an onboarding process that is going to create a warm, friendly tone for every employee on their first day. Putting time into your process now will save an exponential amount of time down the road.


Subscribe to our Star Blog and never miss a post!


So don’t wait, now is the time to review your onboarding program and decide if it is the best that it can be―for you, your company, and most importantly, for the employee. You may want to start by asking newer employees their thoughts, more than likely they are happy to share.

Are you ready to take your first step toward creating an awesome onboarding experience? Just put one step in front of the other. We promise we will be there to support you. Connect with our local office today, and learn why we’re the preferred staffing agency in Petaluma for local candidates. For more details, contact us at 707-762-4447.


Did you like this post? Check out these similar blogs: 

How to tell if your applicant is dependable

How to prevent your best employees from leaving