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“Employees who have a positive Onboarding experience are almost three times as likely to feel prepared and supported in their role, boosting their confidence and improving their ability to perform their role well.”Source: Harvard Business Review: Onboarding Can Make or Break a New Hire’s Experience (April 2022)
“Employees who have a positive Onboarding experience are almost three times as likely to feel prepared and supported in their role, boosting their confidence and improving their ability to perform their role well.”
As mentioned in our first blog article, the optimal employee-centric Onboarding journey consists of three phases: pre-boarding, acclimation, and belonging and performance excellence. In this article, we take a closer look at the second phase of the employee-centric Onboarding journey – the acclimation phase. Acclimation begins on day one at the new company and extends over the first month. The aim of this phase is the professional and organizational enablement of new joiners by helping them understand tasks, get familiar with relevant people, procedures, and the organization in general. The employee starts to become performant.
An important part of the acclimation phase is ensuring the technical competence of employees. This includes ensuring that access to all necessary applications is guaranteed, that registration can be carried out without complications, and that appropriate authorizations are stored. Additionally, it is essential to provide employees with information on where central documents (e.g., payroll) can be viewed and where work resources (e.g., PowerPoint templates in line with corporate identity) can be found. A corresponding checklist in the Onboarding portal can provide valuable guidance here. Beside the checklist from ServiceNow, which we described in the previous blog article on Pre-boarding, other cloud tools can serve the same function, such as SAP SuccessFactors, Oracle, and Workday.
The focus in the acclimation phase is on initiating the employee’s ability to work. Mandatory training courses are a necessary part of this process, which must usually be completed by the new employee during the first weeks of employment. HR Cloud tools should be used to make people aware of the training courses in a timely manner, but also to conduct them. For example, Workday Learning offers quick and user-friendly access to the training courses (see illustration 1 and 2). In addition to these mandatory courses, structured on-the-job training is a vital component of Onboarding. For this to be achieved, the relevant contact persons need to be available to support new employees whenever necessary, helping them get familiar with the new tasks and topics. The new employee must be given sufficient time to do this.
To continue to communicate the culture of the company and ensure optimal Onboarding at the organizational level, communicative measures are necessary. On the one hand, this means information events that provide new employees with insights into central company topics. On the other hand, discussions about expectations and goals must be held with new employees on an individual level. Another aspect is that new employees should always be given sufficient time to get acclimated to regular administrative tasks and the professional environment.
There are many ways to ensure new employees feel welcome within the organization. To become trusted companions during their first weeks in the new company, employees can get to know the team and colleagues by joining (virtual) social groups. These groups also make it possible to build up your own network in the new company. Another key to rapid acclimation is regular interactions with dedicated buddies, who play a particularly significant role for new employees. Buddies are always available to answer any questions that may arise and actively support and facilitate a successful start in the new company.
Our next Blog #4 takes a closer look at the third and final phase of the Onboarding journey – the belonging and performance excellence phase.