The shift to remote and hybrid working caused by the pandemic has been a huge disruption to the traditional onboarding process. Welcoming a new team member to an organization in a remote environment is a radically different experience and requires a different set of processes and priorities. Many businesses were not prepared for this.
As Impact navigated the transition to hybrid and home working, we started to question how best to onboard new employees across our 17 global locations. From both an employee and employer perspective, we’ve identified several top tips to help your organization achieve smooth and successful onboarding processes of your own.
Cassie Cuppek is a consultant at Impact Americas. Based in New Jersey, she joined Impact in 2021. Here are her top insights:
Onboarding starts when an offer is accepted: This is the most challenging and vital period in the onboarding process, especially in a remote context. Poor communication can lead to psychological and emotional difficulty and even end up with one party being ‘ghosted’ by the other. Ensure to engage your new employee and check in regularly.
Right time, right information: Too much information too early on can be overwhelming. Create a phased learning process that takes into account precisely what the new starter needs to know and when.
Planned connections: Relationship building doesn’t come naturally in remote settings. Compensate for the absence of water cooler talk and chance encounters with a calendar full of meetings, introductions, and opportunities for connection.
Helen Hibbott is Head of Impact Asia and is based in Tokyo. Having recruited and onboarded several new employees remotely, she shares the following pieces of advice:
Make an event of it: Break the ice with a fun and friendly team event. Play some games, have a laugh, and celebrate their arrival. This will help you to get to know them as a person early on and find out what other amazing attributes and experiences they’re bringing to the table.
Communicate and check in constantly: It’s vital for every aspect of remote working! Fill their calendar with connections and things to do, and check in to see how they’re getting on regularly.
Provide opportunities: Get your new starter observing the organizational magic – in our case, client programs – from the get-go.
Help them get started: A new starter will find their feet (and confidence) much quicker if they are allowed to get busy and start doing their job ASAP.
Arrange for them to meet the big boss: Checking in with the boss will make the new starter feel seen and valued and provide a great early opportunity for networking and sharing ideas.
Find out more on Team Development.
Connect with Cassie and Helen.