How to Make Remote Onboarding Effective?


The Covid-19 has changed the world, including the way most people work. It seemed normal to work from an office some time ago, and remote work was not as popular.

Today, it is the opposite. It is harder to imagine working in a large office full of people rather than working remotely. Even though remote work is becoming common, many processes could be improved and made more efficient.

One of the processes that has been affected and transformed by remote workstyle in onboarding. Businesses realize that it is realistic to get back to the office one day, but working remotely might take a while. Thus, there is no reason not to continue with adding new people to the team if the business is still doing okay. In this article, we will share tips for making remote onboarding more effective.

Tip #1: Prepare for the Onboarding Upfront

The onboarding process in the office is more stressful than a remote one. Usually, a new employee would have to deal with remembering everybody’s name, position, trying to start conversations with new teammates, and wandering while looking for a specific department or kitchen.

Online onboarding is less stressful, but it has its challenges, especially for the human resources teams. To ensure efficient onboarding and offboarding processes, prepare for them in advance. For effective onboarding, have a package ready, including a welcome email and introduction to other team members before a new employee starts their workday. Also, have a planned agenda in cases of offboarding.

Tip #2: Share Necessary Documents and Information

If you used paper documents back at the office, it is necessary that you prepare digital forms of these documents before you start onboarding new employees. The documents could include mission and vision descriptions, employee policies, handbooks, or documents describing policies that the company uses. 

If those are documents that need to be signed by every newcomer or just general information everybody needs to learn, you need to find the original digital files or scan them if you are unable to locate them. Resources like these will help you occupy your new employee on the first day and give a better sense of how things are done in the company.

Tip #3: Provide Employees With Equipment

It is possible that you will need to purchase some additional equipment for the onboarding of a new colleague; therefore, it would be only smart to prepare for it as soon as possible. 

Once a new person starts their job, make sure to deliver any necessary equipment like computer, phone, and anything else they may need. This way, you will confirm that they can start working efficiently right away.

Tip #4: Personalize Each Onboarding

Automation tools and onboarding templates help with onboarding and save tons of time, but it is good to add some personal touch to each onboarding so that the new employee feels welcome. Also, it gives a sense of communicating with real people. 

You are already unable to meet each other in person, and if the whole process is very mechanical and robotic, it will not feel very welcoming. To create a personal connection with the newbie, explain how the onboarding process will go, what tasks will be included, and get them more familiar with the company culture.

Tip #5: Have a Proper Training Plan

It is pretty easy to start slacking when working from home because of distractions like Netflix, hobbies, chatting, and other entertainment forms. And it is even easier to become unproductive when you are a new employee and are not quite sure what you should be doing.

Preparing a proper training plan will help avoid this issue. Plan out the entire day for your newbie, have them read instructions, watch video training, have live video sessions. It will help them keep busy and give certainty about what they should be doing.

Tip #6: Be Precise About Your Goals

It is important to have precise onboarding goals if you want to be successful at reaching them. When you are working in the office, it is easier to evaluate if the onboarding process is going well or not because you can see new hires in person, hear what other employees have to say, eat together and chat, or accidentally meet in the hallway. 

When the onboarding process is carried out remotely, it is more difficult to say if the new person fits in well, work-wise and communication-wise. Therefore, having specified goals about what needs to be achieved in a certain amount of time will help you evaluate how the onboarding process went and what it lacks.

Tip #7: Introduce the New Employee to the Team

It is more challenging to get to know each other when you are working remotely. To break the ice, show initiative, and introduce the new employee to other teammates. Ensure that the newbie knows the colleagues’ names and which person is responsible for specific tasks.

You can also create separate channels for new people to chat with other workers if you use a group communication tool like Slack. If you do not use a tool like this or it doesn’t have a function to create different channels, you can create group chats on social media platforms like Facebook.

by Lisa Smith

How to Make Remote Onboarding Effective?

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