You’ve purchased an employee onboarding software (or you’re thinking about it), and onboarding is now top of mind for you.
“Do I want to build out an employee self-onboarding program?”
“Do I want a 50/50 split of in-person to self-led training?”
“What should onboarding include?”
The questions are endless, and if your role is in training and development, enablement, or in some cases, management, you’ve been there! And you know what I’m talking about. The onboarding process and the content that goes into building a great one is daunting. But it doesn’t have to be.
When we think about onboarding at Lessonly, we think about three things: Company training, relevant role-specific training, and practice. Let’s take a closer look at these three.
1. Company Training
The first of these onboarding process steps is company training. How is a new hire supposed to do their job well if they don’t have a good understanding of what their new company does, what their new company values, and what is expected of them as a new employee? The first day or two of onboarding should include topics like these. If you want some examples, here’s a list:
- Welcome to [Company]! What to expect on your first day.
- [Company]’s Mission, Vision, and Values
- [Company] Policies (Code of Conduct, Vacation, IT, etc.)
- Employee Benefits (401K, Medical, Life, etc.)
- Introducing the Tech Stack (Email, Communication Platforms, Collaboration Tools, etc.)
- Company-wide Processes (Submitting expense reports, Booking Travel, etc.)
2. Relevant Role-Specific Training
Great—we’ve tackled the first day or two of your onboarding program. Now what? It’s time for relevant role-specific training. Let’s sit on this idea of relevancy for a minute. The best onboarding experiences are not overwhelming. They don’t pack four months of information into two weeks. They don’t emphasize topics you won’t need to know for another six months. And they most definitely don’t include content that is irrelevant to your role.
I’ll give you an example: Let’s say you’re a new customer support rep who’s just gone through two weeks of intense onboarding. In those two weeks, you were trained on everything you need to know for your next two years of work. Six months in, you are levelled up to support more advanced customer requests. Rather than being trained in that moment on what to do, you’re expected to already know how to do this new job because the content was given to you in onboarding over five months ago—but it hasn’t been relevant until now. Do you see what I’m saying here?
The best onboarding practice is NOT to train your new hire on everything they need for the lifetime of their job in the first two weeks. Focus on what’s important to start in their job well, and save the rest for ongoing and continuous training. This will result in having the correct training when, and where, they need it!
So you’ve made it through company training and the relevant content of role-specific training. To elevate your onboarding training, the final piece of the puzzle—the X Factor, if you will—is practice. Practice ties everything together for new hires, combining the conceptual training that they’ve just learned with the practical components of their everyday work. It doesn’t so much matter how practice looks for you and your company, but more so if you are doing it at all. Use an online tool, facilitate role plays, and schedule 1:1 time for your new reps to shadow and rehearse with tenured reps. No matter what methods you choose, always do two things: build time into their schedules to make it happen and provide feedback. Good practice opportunities often fall by the wayside, but from my experience, it’s always worth the time and effort to make your new hires feel more confident in their performance and more supported in their development.
Does your onboarding program check out?
Compare the three topics above with your current onboarding program, or the program you hope to build out. Does your employee onboarding checklist include company training, role-specific training, and practice? Do you have a SaaS onboarding software that can help you facilitate and deploy this type of onboarding training for your new hires? If not, it might be time to scrap the free employee onboarding tools and try something new.
At the end of the day, it’s important to create and deliver an onboarding process that meets the needs of your employees. Prioritize a process and software that is agile and can handle the authoring, deployment, and reporting of training. Choose a tool with built-in practice components that makes leveraging practice simple during onboarding. Find a solution and software partner that will help you strategically think about your training, whether that’s onboarding or ongoing. It will make a world of difference for you and for each new hire’s experience.
If you need a recommendation, look no further. I may be biased, but learning about what a partnership with Lessonly could do for you is a good place to start!
Ready to onboard your team with Lessonly? We’re ready when you are.
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