The job market has become chaotic, in lieu of the pandemic, but that has not hindered the process of hiring, engaging, and retaining the best talent that is out there. Once hired and about to begin their journey with the new company, candidates may not feel fully welcomed, if they have not been guided properly. This is where the importance of a solid onboarding program shines through. However, the limbo-like period that exists before the onboarding process produces anxiety in candidates. To eliminate this stress, a preboarding program, with the following tips, should be considered. Not only will this ease the transition, but it will also help boost your company culture.
Outline the Purpose
The time frame for preboarding is finite and organizations should use it in an intentional and fruitful manner. Clearly outline the goals that are to be accomplished during the preboarding period. Onboarding programs serve dual purposes. Firstly, they are utilized to welcome the new hires in the company. Secondly, they aim to align the productivity of the employees with the expectations of the company. Not everything has to be a part of the preboarding process. Rather, it is more important to include those activities that further align to the goal of the program.
Communication is Key
Once candidates join the company, it is helpful if there is clear communication regarding their role and responsibilities in the company. Give the new hire a heads-up that for the next few weeks they'll be receiving the aforementioned information from the company's end. Convey to the new hires that the information they are receiving is intended to help them transition smoothly into their new roles. However, companies should ensure that the stress of preboarding activities should not overwhelm the new hires. Though it is tempting to dump all the information in one go, it is better to pace out the content.
The most exciting- and stress-inducing- part of starting a new job is getting to meet the team. However, the pandemic has limited this aspect as well. While new hires cannot physically meet the other employees in the company, they can still virtually get to know them. A good idea to adapt to the preboarding activities will be greeting and welcoming the new employees. A video from the CEO, a welcome card from the team members, and a one-on-one virtual meeting with the hiring managers are good practices to welcome the new employees amidst the chaos.
Candidates already have a lot on their plate during the onboarding process. They are either busy with tying any loose ends at their soon-to-be-former workplace or understanding their new role. Thus, any preboarding activity should not be tedious and stressful. Easily consumable content such as short videos, forms, or FAQs is the way to go.
Just like companies expect employees to fulfill certain functions and expectations, the employees also demand the same from companies. Certain concerns of the employees related to payment of salary, signing up for benefits, etc. should be cleared immediately. The preboarding activities are perfectly suited to convey the expectations that employees would like the companies to fulfill. If you cannot clarify their doubts and set the expectation on the first day then use the preboarding period to straighten out all such formalities. Telling your employees what they can expect from the company assuage their fears and lets them know that the company is mindful of their professional journey.
Preboarding activities, in this day and age, can be easily carried out through the help of technology, such as Zoom calls or a string of automated emails conveying basic information. Preboarding activities boost the company culture as they allow you to stay in touch with the new hires before they are fully integrated as employees. It can act as a bridge linking two vast experiences together, that of a candidate and an employee.
The Bottom Line
It is also a preventive measure against candidates disengaging with the company, even before they have joined. Moreover, preboarding is a small taste of the onboarding experience that is to follow. This, however, does not mean that it is insignificant, rather the preboarding experience can play an incremental role in the level of engagement of the new hire within the company.<< back to Blog