The onboarding process is one of the most crucial phases for any company. Every business hires new employees. Making them adjust to their new working environment swiftly is one heck of a job. In the process of onboarding, a new hire may go through mental and physical stress in the transition stage. What if we reverse the situation and make it onboarding a new remote employee?
When a company hires a new remote employee, the transition process becomes hectic for both the company and the employee. Hence, this is why businesses should consider using onboarding software to smooth the transition phase.
Did you know that even before Covid-19 hit the world, the number of new remote working employees has grown considerably over the last decade? According to Flex Jobs research, the number of remote employees in the US Telecommunication alone has increased by 159% from 2005 to 2017. The number of remote employees is expected to grow to a much higher extent in the coming years. According to Future Workforce Pulse Report, published by Upwork, the world’s largest marketplace, there will be 36.2 million remote Americans fully working from home by the year 2025. Nine months after the pandemic and already 41.8% of all workforce is remote which is an increase of 16.8 million people from the pre-pandemic number.
This article will discuss everything about Onboarding Software, why an organization should use it, its benefits and uses, and how to build a custom one.
Table of Contents
What Is An Onboarding Software?
An Onboarding Software is a tool that helps businesses facilitate a swift transition of their newly hired employees. The software features a dashboard that allows talent acquisition teams to communicate and track new hires' progress as they move ahead of the onboarding process.
The software offers I-9 verification, compliance insight, and tools, integrations for payroll and benefits administration. Onboarding Software's important objective is to build a connection between the company application tracking system and performance management system to provide a seamless transition in the new hire’s employment history.
Key Features of an Onboarding Software
There are three key features of Onboarding software, and these are as follow:
A Welcome Portal is a user-friendly and engaging feature that reduces the risk of a drop-off before and after starting the new hire's job responsibilities. It is an informational hub and a communication bridge between the company and the new employee.
A welcome portal should include all details that the new hire needs to know upon joining the organization. The information such as the first day of training, their job description and primary roles, office location, and their primary contacts' names should all be available on the welcome portal.
A new hire can also be trained with visual content. A Welcome Portal should also include a feature to post and publish photos and videos for more interactive communication. A quick welcome note from the CEO can significantly improve their first-day experience.
A Task Management feature will keep the assigned tasks aligned in one window and the close communication between the people involved in the tasks and the new hire. The tasks start with setting up a new official email of the employee by the IT department, assigning laptop protected with strong passwords, payroll details updated in the Finance department, etc.
Additionally, the direct supervisor/manager must arrange introductions and check-in meetings of the new hire with other people in the team or other related departments.
Integration of the Onboarding Software with other organization's tools such as HRIS is a must. After all, when the applicants become new hires and full-fledged members of the organization, you wouldn’t want to input the information again in HRIS. By integrating the software, the transition of information becomes smoother.
New hires should be informed about their team profiles as they’re typically organized in the HR system. In relation, the onboarding software must maximize the reporting relationships set by the HRIS to make delegating tasks and sending out notifications easier.
The Key Benefits of the Onboarding Software
There are countless benefits of using Onboarding Software in an organization. However, there are four primary reasons companies should consider implementing an automated process.
Smooth Onboarding Process Motivates New Hires
No company likes to spend money on the recruitment process, so companies like to keep their old employees happy. When a company uses an automated onboarding process, it motivates the new hires and increases the retention ratio. Most companies do not pay attention to their new employees’ onboarding processes and handle them unprofessionally, leading to a low retention ratio.
By automating the onboarding process, companies tend to eliminate human error and help the behind-the-scenes processes to be seamless so that human resources professionals can concentrate on engaging their newly hired employees in a much better way.
Automation of the Onboarding Process Reduces Cost
The automation of an onboarding process reduces cost by eliminating the need to input data again and again in different software and erasing the paperwork from processes.
With an automated onboarding process, the new hires become aware of their duties quickly and become more productive members of the organization.
While companies might hesitate to spend money on new software, the investment return from onboarding automation makes the investment worthwhile.
Onboarding Automation Increases Productivity
Onboarding Automation doesn’t replace people who welcome new hires, but it enhances HR professionals' efforts in the same regard.
Onboarding a new employee is not an easy job for HR professionals. As each time, the HR department must have completed at least 50+ tasks such as setting emails, cloud storage, assigning cubical, a laptop, and a series of training sessions. If a human error occurred during any of the tasks, it would lead to mental frustration to both the newly hired and the HR professional. Automating the onboarding process eliminates the extra work and the chances of human errors.
Employees who are not helped during the learning curve of their new jobs may become complacent. A large organization with an ineffective process stands to waste millions of dollars each year from productivity loss.
No Paperwork – Centralized System
Automation of the onboarding process eliminates redundancies by using online forms that collect needed information from employees. New employees can use e-signature from a centralized platform to avoid dealing with a pile of documents. All the data provided by the employee will be stored in one centralized place to be accessed later.
Who should use Onboarding Software?
There is always a question, “Do we need Onboarding Software for our company?” Well, every company, irrespective of their size and nature of the business, needs one. If you start seeing these symptoms, know that you urgently need Onboarding Software:
- If your HR person gets occupied in sending, tracking, checking, and filing paperwork instead of welcoming and working with the new employee.
- If your business nature is too compliance-heavy.
- If your onboarding processes are experiencing hiccups such as missing deadlines on I-9 or a new employee's background check.
- If your employee retention ratio is too low
Do remember that Onboarding Software is a helpful tool that allows HR professionals to streamline onboarding processes. Small and mid-sized businesses are especially in dire need of implementing Onboarding Software as they lack many people in the HR department and need time-saving by eliminating paper-work. Onboarding software also differs in features based on the industry's nature, such as hospitality, finance, retail, eCommerce, etc. Most Onboarding Software is a perfect fit for any kind of industry.
How to Onboard Employees while Remote?
To ensure healthy distances, businesses must move to work from home (WFH) operations due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite some unforeseen problems, companies have found these modern onboarding systems so advantageous that the proportion of people working at home would permanently double this year.
It's important to review how to adjust the onboarding process if the company implements remote work indefinitely or uses it as a temporary measure.
Step # 1: Preparation
Both the company and staff deserve onboard processes tailored to meet the special requirements and demands of remote working.
Start with an examination of how remote operational procedures, resources, and climate vary from individual activities. You may need to update operating manuals, incorporate parts outlining remote workers' procedures.
Develop the first-day routine. Show them that you have looked into tech guidance and video call introductions with key team members. Ensure check-ins are available to make sure everything is going smoothly. If this timetable is established a few days ahead of day one, new remote employees will trust that the procedure is well scheduled and is taken care of.
Step # 2: Communicate
The consistency of networking activities determines whether remote operations succeed or fail. Not only does it concern the right methods, but also the procedures and culture which have an emphasis on internal communication. As such, the remote onboarding mechanism has to be featured.
Begin by establishing expectations about how correspondence contacts will be treated. Provide new remote employees with links or downloads to the company's communications tool before the start date, and start the first day with a video call using that platform. It enables HR specialists to direct remote staff in their use of these resources for particular activities, how they can communicate with other apps, and how they can answer any issues or questions. Provide them with more informal chat rooms to socialize and forge bonds with colleagues. These are more tangible demonstrations of how communications fit into the business.
Step # 3: Offer Support
Onboarding is almost as much a question of offering adequate service as having all appropriate documentation taken care of.
Give them a complete list of the various departmental staff members and how they can be reached if any inquiries exist. Make video introductions to all-important staff members where possible, which the recruit may need help. This way, they'll be able to put a polite and welcoming face to the names they've been given.
Things to Consider to Build a Custom Onboarding Software
Structured onboarding can allow enormous changes to user metrics when appropriately performed. Here’re the seven most important things that you should consider before developing custom Onboarding Software.
Prioritize and Commit to Structured Software Onboarding
Commitment is the first move. Prioritization of onboard software is a precondition if onboarding activities are to achieve performance potential. If a company does not execute this undertaking, it cannot follow up on any other strategies covered. This naturally means that the company won’t reap any of the benefits from reasonable onboarding efforts.
To put it another way, to get the most out of an onboarding program, companies must:
- Commit to onboarding and give priority
- Develop a systemic and formal onboarding mechanism
- Analyze and strengthen the mechanism
These specific actions cannot be taken without a company committing to or recognizing onboarding benefits.
Determine the Potential Value of Onboarding Software
Of course, each participant wants to know whether they should be investing in a formal onboarding phase. Therefore, before taking the first steps, it is important to determine the true potential of Onboarding Software for your organization. That is, it’s necessary to make a business case.
Capability to illustrate the onboarding advantage helps:
- Project coordinators assess whether or not onboarding is a real investment.
- Obtain executive sponsorship and buy-in.
- Explain to team members the intent of onboarding
- Align team members for a certain number of objectives
- Justify onboarding budgets
Understanding the opportunity provides stakeholders with a target – which is crucial to the development of sustainable integration strategies.
Executive Buy-In and Sponsorships
For any long-term onboarding platform, the executive buy-in feature is a must-have. Follow a few measures to get buy-in:
- Understand the onboarding value as described above
- Make an onboard case that concentrates on future returns.
- Explain how the management in question would benefit from onboarding
- It is almost like any other persuasive process to obtain approval from executives.
- The proponents must react to the ever-present question, "What is in it for me?"
- The best way to do this is to customize the proposal.
Executives are also more likely to listen to an onboarding plan by discussing how onboarding is to the advantage of a specific division, such as R&D or product management.
Software Should be User-Centric
User-centeredness has become, for many businesses, the normal operational practice. The explanation is simple: user-led design helps maintain relevant, functional, and productive product experiences. There is no guesswork or speculation as User Reviews guide the onboard phase – or other design processes. The user's feedback is dependent on features, design choices, training efforts, and the onboarding funnel.
In functional terms, this implies a user data, feedback, and input onboarding strategy.
A subtly different strategy would apply to any onboarding manager. But the more user feedback into this approach is integrated, the greater the performance.
Use Modern Digital Methods of Training
A modern approach to training and onboarding is required by digital software. To summarize some of the reasons are as follows:
- Continuous improvement, implementation, and adoption of digital technologies
- Workers to learn how to use these interactive technologies continuously
- Traditional methods of teaching are not acceptable to onboard software.
- Any new user who adopts a product cannot have one-on-one instruction or classroom training.
- Indeed, preparation efforts under human control are much too expensive and ineffective to keep pace with digital change.
Therefore, onboarding experts should use digital teaching instruments, such as digital adoption platforms (DAPs). DAPs are on-demand teaching systems without the need for human trainers.
Analyze and Optimize
It is a mistake that a single onboarding procedure is carried out, and then it is considered completed. As stated, any onboard test is just a test. Any onboard experience should be seen as a hypothesis that can be improved further if necessary. The number and consistency of these tests depend, for example, on budgets and the size of the audience.
There must be no definitive results, however, companies that only do one test would almost definitely leave money on the table.
If onboard managers implement the basic, user-centric strategy, then their onboarding process would include steps such as these:
Construct new onboard testing. On-board versions, not finished products, should be considered to be tested.
Any evaluation provides skilled borders with additional knowledge, including user feedback and software analytics.
Analyzing the data will reveal details about user behavior, preferences, training requirements, and more.
Rinse and Repeat.
Finally, add this detail to the next iteration and repeat the steps.
Other industry procedures, such as architecture and marketing, research, re-testing, and optimization, are crucial. In software onboarding, the same method works well – over time, these iterations yield improved performance and more benefit.
Don’t be Afraid of Being Agile and Adaptable
In the previous step, the lean approach is a way of developing an onboarding experience.
Another is agile. As lean, agile can be seen in almost all enterprise processes, from agile change management to agile marketing. Agile business practices are structured to be agile, user-driven, and open. There's something like this an agile design process:
- First, create a new product update, schedule it, or upgrade it. For onboarding software, that will be a recent evaluation of onboarding or a significant enhancement to the previous experience of onboarding.
- Divide it into sprints or steps. The user story or user feedback can be used for each sprint. And each should have a specific length, such as one or two weeks.
- Let the members of the team prepare and calculate. Agile teams organize, not manage, in agile systems. The explanation is straightforward: the team members are nearest to the field and know what they can do.
Too many product teams now use agile or know what it is, at least. Onboarding specialists with no agile experience can likely consult with their onboarding teams to learn how it works.
By integrating Onboarding Software, a company ensures a smooth and stress-free transition of its newly hired employees in the organization. Whereas business will save money on paper-work and putting extra hours by HR professionals. New hires become more comfortable getting adjusted to the new environment, train well, and become a productive part of the business in a shorter time.
Before you can proceed with Onboarding Software's integration, it is important to select a suitable one for your company first. Development firms like Selleo, can help match your company’s goals with the right Onboarding Software with a perfectly-suited set of features to ensure that your new employee can meet specific qualifications and standards. To get more details on how Selleo can help you build perfect customized Onboarding Software, you can contact us anytime.