What does it take to be a really great manager? Surely time management, conflict resolution, vision, execution, and all the rest. But a great manager must first be great at relationships. They need to care about their employees. One way to do this is to start with great onboarding.
An article in HR Technologist says, “Organizations with a standard onboarding process experience 54% greater new hire productivity, along with 50% greater new hire retention.” That’s because new employees want to see that their employers and managers are looking out for their well-being.
In the 2019 Deloitte Millennial Survey, for example, one question asked this: “You mentioned earlier that you might leave your current employer within the next two years. What are the main reasons for this?” The top answers focused on opportunities to advance and learn, as well as not feeling appreciated.
At the end of the report, researchers offered ways managers can engage and prepare their younger employees. The main suggestion is something we are all capable of, something you can implement today:
Simply start a conversation.
That might sound like a difficult task to accomplish at scale, but experience-driven onboarding can help managers make this a reality.
Let’s look at 5 steps to make it happen.
Start by creating an open, welcoming culture.
When a new employee joins your team, it’s a whole new world for them.
The key to first impressions is to think about hospitality. Shortly after signing a contract, did someone greet them and introduce themselves (other than the recruiter or hiring manager)? New people need to feel like they’re welcome and respected, and that they have a real future here.
They also need to like your team too. Remember, from their perspective, they “hired” you too, since they have certain needs and hopes. In a tight labor market, the welcome experience will build your employer brand and pay dividends for years.
Get your new hires organized.
This might sound crazy, but remember last month when you were trying to find that file somewhere on your computer, and then you emailed a coworker who might know where it is? Disorganization like this costs your company money.
An article in Executive Secretary magazine puts it like this: “An Express Employment Professionals survey of more than 18,000 business leaders showed that 57% of respondents said they lose six work hours per week due to disorganization. The survey also found that disorganized employees who make $50,000 annually cost their companies about $11,000 per year in lost time due to their disorganization. You do not want to be one of these people!”
This isn’t a hard problem to solve. A modern onboarding platform ought to be able to provide all the checklists, nudges, notifications, and communication tools you need to get your new people up and running without a hitch.
Connect them to the right people.
However, checklists and tools only go so far. They need to learn from a whole team of people to show them the way, and you as the manager can show them only so many things, while software and automation can only do so much. Their peers need to step in and show them what’s important about working there that, to be frank, you may not be privy to.
Referring back to Deloitte’s research above, new hires need help finding people they can network with to start mapping out how to be successful at their new company. Call this a mentor, coach, or rock-star manager, the trick is just to integrate them into your team so they can start to form their own “team.”
Communicate to new hires more effectively.
Your business is like a fast-moving current with tons of inertia, history, and (probably) bureaucracy that keeps it heading in the right direction quick, fast, and in a hurry. The more effectively you can communicate and onboard your people, the faster they can get into the current and move with the rest of the crowd.
Yet poor communication slows your organization down and costs real money. An article in SHRM noted a survey in which companies with more than 100,000 employees “cited an average loss per company of $62.4 million per year because of inadequate communication to and between employees.” Though you may not have that many employees, the business case remains the same: Great communication, especially to new hires, keeps your organization running smoothly.
SHRM recommends focusing on communication to retain new talent: “Recruiting, selecting, and retaining talent require effective communication. Applicants will often forego employment with a company whose recruiter was not able to compellingly communicate what the position involved and specifics about the company.”
This brings us to our last point.
Generate real business impact.
We know what we’re saying sounds difficult. We get it. But it doesn’t have to be. Advances in technology make this process straightforward and simple for you and and your new hires. It’s important we get this right for your sake, their sake, and the sake of your company. As we’ve learned, creating an experience-driven onboarding journey has tremendous impact on your business in real, tangible, show-it-on-a-dashboard results.
Using these principles for creating a truly great onboarding experience can help your new hires feel welcome, organized, and set up for long-term success. That way your whole team can be full of rock stars.
For an in-depth discussion on how HR can transform managers into staunch champions of EX in the workplace, join Enboarder at 2.50pm on 30 October at Employee Experience Summit Sydney.