Employee Onboarding All-Stars: 4 Lessons

You wake up early. Put on that new outfit you specifically bought for this day. You actually eat breakfast! You’re prepared as ever but still as nervous as can be. Your first day. Can’t get more terrifying than that, can it? It can when facing your greatest fear is part of the onboarding process

At Click Boarding, we want to make every first day, the best first day it can be for new hires. It’s not easy to walk into a new job, attempt to make new friends and learn entirely new skills. Today, we look at some companies who are making their new hires feel right at home, from day one. Check out these onboarding all-stars.

 

Medallia: At Medallia, new hires are challenged to step up and push their limits. From claustrophobia to the fear of needles to being terrified of being lost and alone, new employees are encouraged to face them all.

 

Facing their greatest fears not only helps new hires grow, it helps new employees get closer to their team as their team helps through the experience. Facing fears becomes an experience that your new hire never forgets, and it’s a team building exercise! This is just the tip of the iceberg for Medallia’s onboarding best practices!

 

Medallia takes their onboarding process seriously; they have spent over 9,360 paid hours perfecting it. It is said that it's easy to spot a new hire by Friday evening as their onboarding process can be exhausting. It has become something their employees regularly cite as formative to tackling their new jobs as well as everyday life.

 

While your company may not require such an extensive process, something this intense and well thought-out is sure to make new employees feel valued. Something must be working as the CEO of Medallia, Borge Hald, has an approval rating of 96% on Glassdoor.

 

Try this: Instead of an intense week, tap a few engaged employees to share their most challenging moments with the new hire during a chat session on their second day. This can create empathy, build relationships and be a less scary way for the new employee to know his fears aren’t so uncommon.

 

Valve: When it comes to innovating your onboarding system, where do you turn? How about your employees, the ones that actually went through the process? That’s exactly what Valve has done with their onboarding process. An employee handbook written by the employees, for the employees.

 

“A fearless adventure in knowing what to do when no one’s there telling you what to do” - Valve’s New Employee Handbook

 

What better way to get introduced to your new team than by reading what employees think you need to know! Valve did not always have this as new hires would sometimes take six months to get acclimated with the company culture and its flat management structure. This can be a big problem when 22% of staff turnover occurs in the first 45 days of employment. To avoid this, Valve made their employee feedback became their onboarding process. Do you get input into your onboarding process from those that have actually been through it?

 

Valve’s handbook also helps their new employees decide which project they will do first since Valve’s culture is built on the premise that there are no managers.

Onboarding All Stars

 

Due to the structure of the company there is no one to necessarily tell new employees exactly what to do. Because of this, getting started can be daunting. The handbook becomes the guidebook to the new hire’s new job instead of something that is left aside and forgotten. It becomes a significant part of their onboarding process.

 

Try this: Do you have a flat organization? If so, consider building out a YOUR COMPANY FOR NEWBIES book. Crowdsourced from your employees, this book can be a collection of survival tips, unwritten rules and examples of what success looks like and can help your new hire orient herself. It doesn’t have to be long to be helpful.

 

Netflix: The onboarding process for many companies begins before the new employee even arrives. This includes companies like Netflix who call their new employees before the first day. The new hire’s laptop of choice and configuration are on their desk and ready to go the moment the new employee walks in the door.

 

Netflix also helps their employees ease into their new job as their new hire is provided with a dedicated mentor to help during the first days. While mentoring is a priority for Netflix, 63% of slightly more than 300 business women surveyed across the world have never had a mentor. Mentoring is necessary for Netflix because new hires receive significant responsibilities within weeks.

 

To try: According to many sources, Netflix’s onboarding is a tough act to follow but you can try by implementing a buddy system in your own organization. Teaching provides just as much value for the teacher or trainer as the one getting lessons. Remote workers? Try join.me or screencasts that are recorded to get past those pesky time zones.

 

Twitter: The onboarding process at Twitter begins the moment the new employee says yes to recruiting. The process includes recruiting, HR, IT and Facilities. Everything is prepared from the new hire’s preferred email address to a new shirt in their size to a PDF explaining what to expect on their first day. Twitter has streamlined their onboarding process, and for good reason. A standard onboarding process creates 54% greater new hire productivity.

 

Twitter aims to get their new employees up and running after day one, but their new hire onboarding process goes beyond the first day, or even first week. Twitter has a monthly new hire happy hour and has a rotating 5-week schedule of 30-minute presentations on Friday afternoons. This provides the opportunity for new hires to meet with just about all of the leads, managers and project managers and also gives new employees an opportunity to ask questions.

 

To try: If you use onboarding software, submit goals and milestones into the program so you and your new hires know what is expected and by when. If you don’t currently have an onboarding software, consider a bulletin or dry erase board. These visuals help alignment and realistic goals can help you all stay on track!

 

There are a multitude of ideas and ways a company can innovate their onboarding system. Let us help you transform your onboarding process today! Make your onboarding process an example of some of the best onboarding practices. Simplify your onboarding experience now!

 

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Christine Marino

Written by Christine Marino

Christine is responsible for Click Boarding’s sales, marketing and business development strategies. Leveraging her 18+ years of experience in the Human Capital Management space, Christine drives company growth through strategic partner relationships as well new customer acquisitions across the small to large enterprise markets.



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