If you’re a thriving, people-centric business like ours, chances are you will face the prospect of remote onboarding in the near future. We have learnt a thing or two about onboarding employees in the difficult circumstances surrounding the Covid-19 virus lockdown, so here are our top 5 tips for success. They aim to help you integrate new members of staff remotely, but to also build and maintain strong working relationships.
1. Be Prepared
Having a remote onboarding process already in place might not be possible in the current climate, but if you can prepare a protocol then you’re already a step ahead. Companies that execute remote onboarding on a regular basis because of widely distributed workforces have staff and material dedicated to the process. Create welcome packs that can be easily circulated via email or hosted digitally, allowing your new recruits to digest key information about your business.
This will also mean getting your tech requirements in order. Consult your new employee and their line manager at least a week before their start date, to ensure you have a good idea of their technology needs. This should give you enough time to send or order equipment. Currently in the UK deliveries are still operating but are slightly slower than usual due to increased demand, so try to do this as far in advance as possible.
2. Install Software
As more of us adapt to working from home, it’s clear that there are a plethora of applications on offer for video calling and remote communication, all competing for our business. Take time to research a few, think about which best fits your business needs and budget, and work closely with IT colleagues to roll them out to staff.
3. Think Digital
Remote onboarding is primarily something we do digitally, so it’s a good idea to have a wealth of digital content to share with your employees. Ideally, this should be hosted in one location, like a dedicated website, web page or area of your intranet. Think about creating content that applies to all new starters, regardless of their seniority or role.
This could be introductory videos about your business, team structure diagrams, short introductions to key personnel and contact details. At Amoria Bond we have standardised introductory emails to send to new recruits which include links to videos about us.
4. Discuss Culture
If you haven’t done so already, it’s important to outline what your business’s culture, aims and objectives are. You might refer to this as a ‘mission statement’. Encouraging new employees to adopt a company culture is essential to the long term success of any appointment, and the sooner you introduce the concept, the better.
At Amoria Bond, walking into one of our offices is a quick and sure-fire way of knowing exactly what we’re all about: our people. You’ll struggle to find a more welcoming group, all focussed on being their best and pulling together to reach our goals. Our reception is littered with trophies and information on the fantastic benefits we offer our staff. But how to convey all of this remotely? It’s all about good communication. The easiest and most effective way of doing so is by talking to a new recruit either on the phone or via video chat. Making them feel welcome, included and inspired is best done by communicating your own enthusiasm!
Our Talent Acquisition Manager, Tony Bolland, is a pro when it comes to initial calls: “Whether I’m approaching a potential candidate for an internal role or welcoming a new colleague remotely, I always start by introducing them to Amoria Bond in a way that intends to inspire. I talk about what we’ve achieved, our ambitious growth targets, fantastic reward schemes and international offices, which really gets people excited for the task ahead. This approach works to motivate new recruits and start their careers with us on the best possible footing.”
5. Get Admin Right
Getting the obligatory admin stuff right is crucial to onboarding a new team member smoothly. Create a checklist for everything your new employees need and chat to their line manager about what their access requirements, like shared drives and email groups. Make sure you cover system access at the earliest opportunity, to ensure your new starter is ready to hit the ground running.
If you need to register employees on web-based applications, do so in one short time frame when you know they will be readily available to set passwords before links expire. Some time on their first day is usually a good opportunity to do this. As for HR, be sure to give advance notice of documents and information you require before an employee’s start date. This reduces the risk of delayed payments, etc. You should also try to send a contract prior to start date too, as this will allow time for any contractual negotiations.
And that’s it! Our top tips for onboarding remotely. The key attribute that great onboarding shares, whether in person or remote, is strong communication. Thinking about hiring? Get in touch here and one of our expert consultants will get back to you.