If you look online there are reams of information on ‘Onboarding’, you might even come across a few infographics or images of lifebuoys- yes lifebuoys.
When I began working in recruitment none of these lengthy articles really offered any examples or explained what good onboarding actually looked like. There are a number of organisations and businesses that are doing it successfully and every recruiter can learn a little something from them.
Thinking about candidates as an audience is particularly useful. Onboarding begins as soon as someone is introduced to you or your business. Check out the landing page for NHS Graduates- it has an interactive skeleton which helps to navigate the website and even has a ‘Match Me’ tool to find out if it’s the right scheme for the prospective candidate.
Another great example is the Motley Fool, a multimedia financial-services company, whose number one value is “Be Foolish!” The Motley Fool has an Employee Handbook with a difference. It’s online, interactive and the first page is a welcome video featuring the company’s CEO.
The handbook not only demonstrates the culture of the company, but also outlines the policies, including:
Appropriate work attire “Our only request is that you don’t dress in a way that would disappoint your parents.”
And a very relaxed attitude towards annual leave- “Take what you need”.
The Motley Fool’s approach not only deals with making people feel welcome to begin with, but also creating a great working environment for employees- don’t forget that the on boarding process goes beyond the first week. Click here to read the handbook.
Another company that successfully illustrates what onboarding should like is online shoe and clothing retailer, Zappos. The company and its culture have become so popular that they have stopped advertising altogether.
Zappos constantly talks about the ‘Zappos Family’ which newbies are welcomed in to through a New Hire programme. No matter what position an employee is recruited to, he or she goes through exactly the same training programme.
As well as training, new employees also take part in team building exercises and finding out more about the culture of Zappos. At the end of the four weeks, a small graduation ceremony is held- the company has reported that the people in each class bond and continue their friendships even after moving to their respective departments. You can read more about Zappos by clicking here.
These are all fantastic examples of top-notch onboarding. There is plenty of information online about it but it’s also really important to take note of what others are doing in the industry. By doing this, we can concentrate on being bold, innovative and creating a successful onboarding process.