In recent years the very notion of onboarding has evolved a great deal.
Gone are the days when “onboarding” referred only the 2-hour meeting with HR to complete a dozen forms, traditionally followed by coffee with the hiring manager before being assigned a desk and a list of responsibilities. These days, onboarding best practices include a more holistic, long-term approach.
Modern onboarding programs tailor themselves to the way studies show people learn best – introducing new materials in bite-sized chunks over time and repeating key concepts to ensure new hires learn what they need in full and retain the information.
Exactly how these components translate into an effective, easily-manageable employee onboarding program will be unique to every organization. However, in our experience from helping hundreds of organizations around the world use video to share knowledge, our customers tend to identify seven core steps to planning and executing a modern onboarding program.
Seven essential steps for every onboarding program
- Identify a set of core onboarding training activities that every employee will undergo.
However your organization chooses to onboard new hires, the first step in designing your onboarding process is to identify what training your new hires need.
- Determine which of your core onboarding activities could be (or already have been) supplemented with video.
There are a host of ways for using video to scale and support your onboarding programs, from cultural insights to technical skills training. Looking for ideas to help get you started? Download our white paper, 15 Ways to Enhance Employee Onboarding with Video.
- Map out a weekly video onboarding schedule for each new employee’s first 60 or 90 days.
Keep the timeline somewhat flexible, particularly at first, by identifying onboarding requirements as a weekly set of expectations, rather than a formal daily schedule. This allows your new hires to more easily fit onboarding in alongside the demands of their new roles and gives them the ability to review your training materials at their own pace. Of course, the time that the viewing schedule takes employees to complete will vary by organization, but we recommend that you plan to spread out the onboarding activities over the course of the employee’s first one to two months, as experts believe that doing so increases employee retention rates significantly.
- Repeat the above steps with role-, department-, and location-specific videos.
Here’s where the best onboarding processes stand apart. Once you’ve mapped out the essential onboarding training for every employee, begin tailoring your onboarding program for your employees by mapping out valuable additional resources for specific roles, departments, or locations. We recommend that companies first focus their efforts on a select group of roles (e.g. job-specific sales and customer support training) and locations (e.g. local strategies for the Dallas region, for example, or regional regulations impacting UK stores). Then build on this foundation to ultimately include all roles and locations.
- Document the schedule and share it with other departments so they can add additional content.
This most straightforward step is the most essential — and often the most helpful. Sharing your onboarding map across departments gives you the opportunity to add more useful cross-functional training activities to the map. Sharing your map can also help ensure your organization buys into the new program.
- Make your onboarding experience consistent by making your onboarding communications automatic.
Collaborate with your corporate communications or internal email communications teams to create an automated email “drip campaign” to share onboarding videos with new staff as planned in your schedule. Most enterprise email systems make this easy — simply write a set of emails sharing links to videos and note the cadence at which they should be sent to a new employee. Once you’ve got the process set up, each new employee will automatically receive your emails just as you scheduled them, ensuring everyone shares a consistent onboarding experience.
- Use video analytics to monitor viewing activity.
Once your maps are in place and your communications are set, watch to ensure the system works as expected. With an effective video platform you’ll be able to see broad viewing trends across the organization and also know when and how often each employee watched any particular video, as well as whether that employee watched a video in full or stopped short. While this information proves invaluable to evaluating the effectiveness and compliance of individual team members, it can also be used to monitor the effectiveness of the video onboarding program itself.
Find out more in our latest free white paper, 15 Ways To Enhance Employee Onboarding With Video.
In it, we detail how video can be used to improve onboarding for businesses and universities, including:
- 15 kinds of onboarding videos to supplement your training program
- 5 capabilities your onboarding video platform needs to be successful
- How to develop an onboarding program that works