According to the 2016 survey on employment tenure recently released by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median number of years that wage and salary workers had been with their current employer was 4.2 years; this is down from 4.6 years in 2014.
In other words, once every four years the average person is changing jobs.
When you consider that level of turnover, it should come as no surprise that the idea of “onboarding” is very important to setting the proper tone and experience that a new employee is going to have with a company.
A lot of effort, time and money has been expended on advertising for, screening, interviewing and then, ultimately, selecting a person for the position. The last thing a company would like to do is have the person show up on the first day and be completely soured on the company culture. That would be incredibly wasteful.
To illustrate the point, Maren Hogan of Red Branch Media recently shared the following in Forbes:
“A study of 264 new employees published in the Academy of Management Journal found that the first 90 days of employment (often called the probationary period) is pivotal to building rapport with the company, management and coworkers. When support levels were high from the team and leaders, new hires often had more positive attitudes about their job and worked harder. When support and direction were not offered, the inverse occurred, leading to unhappy and unproductive employees who didn’t make it much further than four months.”
Onboarding doesn’t only have short term effects either. It can have a long term impact torward job satisfaction, performance, stress levels and, of course, organizational commitment.
So what are some best practices? There are several places to get ideas, and a simple Google search will yield ample results. In addition to Hogan’s article, you can find out more from Chad Halvorson of When I Work, MIT has an extensive onboarding program to review, and, of course, the Society of Human Resources Management has published in their Effective Practice Guidelines Series, “Onboarding New Employees: Maximizing Success,” which is probably the gold-standard on how to manage and implement an effective onboarding program.
But now that you have completely designed the program, how do you track the program?
According to SHRM one of the tools that can help with the onboarding process is the use of technology.
For example, technology can “automate basic forms, track progress against development and career plans, and help stakeholders monitor new employees to see when they may need additional support. About 68 percent of Level 3 organizations have onboarding systems that are partially or fully online.”
This is where COATS can help.
COATS offers our clients the ability to click a link to register an employee to the COATS onboarding site: “BringTalentOnboard.com”
The site emails the employee welcoming them to fill out the onboarding forms.
The staff user can also review the employee progress and check forms whenever and if ever needed.
The ease of use of the electronic onboarding prevents the employee from having to fill out redundant information multiple times on multiple forms. It also gives the employee the ability to print and take forms with them. For the staff user, they have access when needed; which means cleaner cabinets and organized onboarding!
The bottom-line is that onboarding is just like any other business process: One that requires planning, effort and tools to get the job done. Tools that are available from COATS Staffing Software.