Blog: Revamping your pre boarding strategy: Here's how?

Talent Management

Revamping your pre boarding strategy: Here's how?

What can organizations do to ensure that it does not lose talent for its sustainable growth?
Revamping your pre boarding strategy: Here's how?

Your Talent Acquisition team has found the ideal candidate, a purple squirrel in HR lingo. They accepted the job offer and will resume in three months after completing their notice period. Does this imply that it is now time to relax and loosen up? Certainly not. The war for today's best talent is fierce. The acceptance of a great candidate to take a position at your organization no longer ensures that they will turn up on the first day of work. We've seen how the modern talent marketplace puts organizations at risk of losing new recruits to rival employers, incurring costs from early employee turnover, and slowing speed to productivity. So, the concern is, what can organizations do to ensure that it does not lose talent for its sustainable growth?

Preboarding is one method for accomplishing this, particularly after a job offer is accepted. It differentiates the organizations and ensures that your organization has minimum no-shows on joining. It is a phase rather than a case; it starts before the employee arrives on the first day and continues long after being trained and established. Preboarding phase is also a time of excitement, but often with worry and uncertainty for the recruit, who is also unsure what to anticipate from their new workplace. It is critical to connect and engage with the new employees during this phase. Organizations should take advantage of this phase by exchanging details about their organization and policies, handling logistics such as financial and regulatory paperwork, preparing new hires for what to expect once they start, and perhaps surprising and delighting them a bit. Effective preboarding can psychologically and emotionally prepare staff, educate and train them on the organization's culture, and obtain their buy-in through a more vital link to the organization. There is no better time to achieve these objectives than during preboarding. You will strengthen employees' connection to the organization's mission and values and their embrace of digitalization by redefining the preboarding. A well-structured preboarding phase can reveal a lot about an organizational strategy, technology, or management style. Since pre boarding simplifies document uploading, addressing immediate questions on the mind of candidates thereby making the experience seamless. This goes a long way in the candidate satisfaction and word-of-mouth publicity. Many candidates judge a company or brand by the knowledge they have and the best way for employer branding is to provide a seamless experience to the 'to be employee.' Selling the employer value proposition to potential workers before entering will maximize their drive to get off to a great start.

Since you never get a second opportunity to make a first impression, it is critical to ensure that an employee's first day is pleasant and rewarding. The pre boarding process should be structured to align with their beliefs and vision, increase recruit engagement and commitment, and manage the practical aspects of starting a new job on day one.  A well-prepared new recruit will undoubtedly be more effective in handling digital apps. By eliminating time-consuming administrative tasks, the new recruit will spend their time making introductions, getting to know the team, and starting work. A unified app from the time of offer acceptance till the initial induction would go a long way in helping the organization retain its leadership position amongst its competitors in the talent landscape. The idea here is to have an integrated app that first requests new hires to complete their employee profile. It consists of a few pages of checklists with activities to remember when onboarding a new employee for their first day, information on benefits, access to essential details of their team members, dress code, anticipated time of arrival, specific address, name of the person they need to report to, anything else they may need to bring, and completion of administrative paperwork, including tax forms, NDAs, and health insurance forms. Hiring managers could then schedule a time to review the app with employees over the phone to ensure smooth assimilation of the new hires to the organization.

Further details about the first week's schedule could allow employees to understand when things will happen, and it shows that the company has a plan for the new hire's success. This app should also enable new hires to contact the company if they have any significant concerns, either with chatbot answering FAQs or candidate query portals where candidates can get the HR. Answering questions identifies those who have questions and those who have great ideas for the business. Some informal engagements in this app can include making a two-minute introduction video, making a slideshow of pictures and fun facts, or completing a get-to-know-you quiz, which can also be shared on social media, thereby promoting the employer brand. Digital introductions are vital in large or remote organizations where the new recruit will be unable to walk around the office shaking hands. Being open to your new hire is beneficial to your employer's brand. 

Today, firms are increasingly relying on gamification and virtual reality in the preboarding state. Gamification has the potential to make the pre boarding process much simpler and less stressful. A week before the official start date, send new hires a connection to a virtual preboarding tour of the office. A virtual tour with interactive features such as text, images, video, and mini-games is generated using 360 video or photos to welcome the new hires to get a virtual taste of the organizational culture. A clear path with checkpoints is established within the tour to ensure that the employee completes all of the required activities. Employees would have a good experience as a result of this creative approach for sustainable growth.

Furthermore, it creates anticipation and a welcoming sense of connection with the company. Gamification can turn preboarding from a daunting paperwork exercise into an engaging, personalized experience of your employee value proposition. It allows you to be more innovative in displaying the human aspect of your organization. Besides, from a strategic point of view, a gamification framework will enable you to gather all new hire data you need with minimal hassle while easily integrating the data with your business HR systems.

Organizations can foster a culture of teamwork and organizational learning within their walls with digital platforms or online communities with different groups to ensure employee engagement across the organization's lifecycle. Allow your new hires to make their first impressions and create a community on their terms. A speak-up platform, or online communities, may provide agile two-way interaction, collaboration, and business update dissemination through e-town halls and tools like chats, forums, and webinars. Other sites for project management interest/wellness, success stories/best practices, leader instruct, and so on can be created in the same way enabling bottom-up crowdsourcing/decision on solutions, concern, and coordination of deliverables in a stable environment enabling cross-functional & multi-locational real-time collaboration. This will help the 'to be employees' to get a sneak peek with their future colleagues. Before their first day, have your new employee's colleagues contact them via their new work email or your in-house messaging system. This way, they'll get to know the appropriate names and faces ahead of time, and they'll be able to start building virtual relationships before meeting in person. 

Organizations can establish a 'buddy program' to act as a company ambassador to engage with the new hires. The program is essentially Employer Branding in two steps: first to the new recruit, and then to a much wider audience by word of mouth. By establishing your Employer Branding from the first meeting with the new hire, you will effectively employ a delicate period that many businesses overlook. Create a connection, pick up on their ideas and opinions, and hopefully, your new hires will become company ambassadors before they even start their new job! Employee Advocacy is a result of good employer branding. Buddy system is a highly efficient and organic method of marketing your own business through those you collaborate with. It should be acknowledged that the buddy isn't a substitute for HR or the team manager. The buddy acts as an informal connection with the new hire, helping the new hires with the unwritten rules, organization's culture, or query. Buddy events include an office tour and introductions, coffee, or lunch during the new hire's first week. And no law says those interactions can't start before day one. If there's a chance for the employee to meet any of their potential co-workers during the interview process, it will help them welcome their new colleague.

Finally, sending goodies with the company logo with a welcome note from the senior management before day one will help make a new hire feel like they're part of the team & associate with the company brand. To ensure the candidate's early association with the organization and maintain their excitement, virtual thank you or congratulatory cards/ video messages to tell them how pleased the company is to have them on board from the CEO or senior leadership will provide an emotional connection. This would work as the first step toward creating the candidate experience, a WOW experience. Reimagining connected sessions, engaging via online trivia or social media challenges, capturing real-time candidate feedback on the interview process are other techniques to engage with the candidates. 

Together, future-focused systems will transform the company into a reimagined workplace that is fully digital, empowered, agile, open, and self-directed, appealing to the multi-generational environment for tomorrow's innovative workforce. After establishing an effective tailor-made preboarding strategy, the next question emerges: ' How to Evaluate Pre-boarding efficacy?' In the case of preboarding, the following are three common objectives that an organization can seek to achieve:

  • Reduce new hire "ghosting" on the first day
  • Reduce the first-year turnover; and 
  • Increase new hire employee engagement.

If an organization reaches these three objectives, it stands to reason that it can save time and money for sustainable growth.

  • They don't have to restart their recruiting process after making an offer to a candidate who rejects it
  • So, they hire fewer employees who quit within the first year
  • Since new hires are engaged in their jobs and feel committed to the company.

Hence, it is important for the organizations to stimulate preboarding’s experience which sets standards for the Employee‘s Experience the company can provide. A positive candidate experience is a necessary precondition for the employer brand and employer effect. Effective preboarding may also have an impact on efficiency, which is a critical recruitment metric. Take the time to develop a comprehensive pre boarding strategy to ensure a smooth start to a successful recruit and sustainable development.

 

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Topics: Talent Management, #GuestArticle

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