How to overcome the challenges of remote onboarding
Since the beginning of the Covid-19 lockdown, many companies have focused solely on adjusting to homeworking for their current employees. However, as we now enter a new period of relaxed restrictions, many of those companies are now recruiting new staff, but with the new and additional challenge of doing so remotely.
Recruiting new staff into a homeworking environment can be particularly challenging, especially when knowing how to successfully onboard them remotely. Reported issues of onboarding employees remotely have included problems such as not receiving equipment and not meeting colleagues in-person to build relationships and experience first impressions.
It is therefore important for businesses to consider how they will successfully onboard new employees remotely. The core of successful onboarding is to make new employees feel as welcome as possible from the very beginning. Whilst different companies will adopt different approaches as to how this is achieved, successful techniques have included making sure new employees are added to any social platforms before their first day so they can communicate with existing employees right away. Additionally, assigning a new employee a buddy for the first few weeks has also been shown to be effective, as it allows for relationships to build and for the mentor to answer any questions or settle anxieties the new employee may have about working remotely. With restrictions easing, it may also be possible for businesses to adopt a hybrid model thereby allowing new employees to come into the office for a few days a week, in order to meet people in person. It is important that when adopting any of these techniques, businesses should ask for continuous feedback and act on any issues as soon as possible, in order to understand what is working well and what is not.
The successful onboarding of new employees should not be overlooked, even if it is now done remotely, as it has significant benefits for a company including reducing employee turnover in the future.