The most common mistakes businesses make when onboarding

Good onboarding is integral to staff retention and engagement. We list the three practices the best HR professionals avoid.

Employee onboarding is one of those HR processes that looks deceptively easy but can cause serious issues for your organisation if not done properly.

A bad onboarding experience can leave your new starter feeling overwhelmed and unsupported, and, in a worst-case scenario, heading for the door. From an organisational perspective, poor onboarding is often a key factor for businesses experiencing difficulties with staff retention, engagement, and morale.

Conversely, a positive onboarding experience enables employees to get up to speed with the requirements of their new position as quickly as possible so they can become a productive member of your team.

The recognised business benefits of good employee onboarding include:

  • Making it easier to attract and retain top talent
  • Improved staff engagement and morale
  • A clearer understanding of staff roles and responsibilities
  • Better company culture
  • Enhanced company reputation as an employer of choice
  • Improved training and development

However, HR professionals appreciate that there’s a lot more to smoothly integrating a new hire than most people realise – and businesses that issue a laptop and a handbook and expect their new employee to just get on with it are reaping what they sow.

Here are 3 of the most common mistakes businesses make when onboarding:

1. Information overload

While you want your new hire to have a clear understanding of their role and how they fit into the business, some organisations deliver a deluge of information in the first week, when most people are still memorising the names of their colleagues and working through mundane necessities such as where to park or go for lunch. It’s a recipe for overwhelm that will dampen the enthusiasm of the most conscientious employee.

Create a staggered process of information delivery so your new hire has time to properly digest information about their position, company expectations, and company culture. Ensure your employee handbook (whether digital, print, or both) is up to date and contains the answers to most frequently answered questions.

2. Waiting until the new hire’s first day

Many onboarding processes can be carried out or at least started well before a new hire starts work – and a streamlined, efficient process schedule can help avoid stress and overload (both for the new employee and the HR team).

This can include routine procedures such as signing off on paperwork such as payroll and tax documents, and arranging access to the IT system and any business software they will need to use.

3. A lack of human touch

Understandably, the need to deal with a long string of administrative tasks when onboarding means that it can be challenging for HR professionals to deliver a personalised experience. However, it’s the human element that makes the biggest difference in terms of the employee’s first impressions, whether that’s a quick catch-up over coffee at the end of their first week or a tour of the office to be introduced to their colleagues.

Process management software is enabling HR professionals to automate many routine tasks during onboarding, freeing up their time for more valuable, face-to-face interactions.

How process management tools are transforming onboarding

While HR professionals used to have to sift through a mountain of paperwork every time there was a new hire, this is thankfully no longer the case, not only because most of this paperwork is now digitalised, but because the latest process management software is reducing the amount of manual effort required.

Process management tools harness the power of automation to streamline tasks and provide greater visibility over routine processes, so that important details are not overlooked, and everyone involved is aware of what needs to be done, how, and when, saving time and reducing effort.

At Demeter, we have developed a tried-and-tested, AI-friendly process management tool that gives busy HR professionals better visibility over all their HR processes and procedures on one easy-to-use platform, including onboarding and offboarding, recruitment, compliance, leave procedures, and performance appraisals. 

Watch a short step-by-step video on how it works.

Our process management system is designed to seamlessly integrate with the rest of your HR software for improved tracking and reporting. We help HR teams increase efficiency, compliance, and employee satisfaction.

If you want to improve onboarding and the efficiency of your HR team, get in touch today

We make process flow, so your business grows.

To take the first step towards improving business processes at your organisation, get in touch.