Successful organizations are aware that their workforce is their biggest asset. Engaged employees who feel a sense of belonging to their company produce better results and are more likely to “go the extra mile” for their company.
Creating an engaging new hire experience is what onboarding is all about. If new hires are engaged in their early days with a company, they’ll feel more confident they’ve made the right choice of employer. Many company introductions take the form of a one-way dialog. However, onboarding involves much more.
As well as policies, employees learn how their job contributes to the overall organization. Through effective onboarding, employees also learn the culture, expectations, and day-to-day responsibilities of their department and organization.
Effective onboarding is a supportive process that starts as soon as the employee is hired and can extend up to a year and a half. Onboarding functions to set new employees up for success in their position by providing the support and “insider” information necessary to effectively navigate the new organizational landscape.
Employees learn how their work contributes to the overall efforts of the organization and how it integrates with that of their colleagues. A good onboarding process speeds up the rate at which new hires start to become productive and make a difference. It can transform a new recruit into a committed and engaged employee.
Good onboarding isn’t just good for the organization; it helps alleviate some of the stress of starting a new job and enables the new hire to develop a positive view of the organization.
Orientation versus onboarding
Standard in most companies, orientation involves welcoming new recruits and educating them about company policy and procedures. Benefits such as salary scales, time off, and payroll information might be outlined for the new employees. Some orientation processes also include a tour of the organization’s premises. These practices are treated as a single event.
Orientation isn’t separate from the onboarding process, but rather an integral part of it. Although they’re linked, there are a number of key differences between orientation and onboarding.
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