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The Importance of Onboarding

How would you define onboarding? Many of you would say that it is a process where new hires are integrated into the company, given the essentials to get started, and attend an orientation. “As well as learn about the organization and its structure, culture, vision, mission and values” as defined by the The Society of Human Resource Management SHRM.

Our onboarding definition is essentially correct but it leaves out an important component - this isn’t a one-time experience that happens during their first week only. Consider this, 31 percent of people leave a job within the first six months, with 68 percent of those departing within three months (2018 Source) and in today’s climate this can fluctuate even more.

That is why, at Montage, we believe onboarding is a continuous process over an employee’s life cycle, expanding from their first day into their first three months or longer. We do this by incorporating new hire needs around the Company, their Department, and their Role in 3 programs that build upon each other.

Company Onboarding

  • Ask yourself: Do we affirm the decision employees made to join us? Do new hires experience our values? Do they understand our mission and vision?
  • Company onboarding is fundamental to creating a solid foundation for employees. It roots them in the organization, provides culture immersion, and gives them job essentials to get started on day one.

Department Onboarding

  • Ask yourself: Do new hires understand how their department or team contributes to the company overall? Do they understand how the department is structured?
  • Department Onboarding transforms tribal knowledge into institutional knowledge, reducing the time tenured staff spend onboarding new hires. It helps to disseminate knowledge like departmental resources, department functions, overview of department roles and disciplines, and department leadership.

Role Onboarding

  • Ask yourself: Do new hires understand what is expected of them? Do they feel that the role aligns with the job posting? Do they have clear responsibilities and goals in their role?
  • An employee’s role and responsibilities are initially defined during Role Onboarding. But these are redefined while they perform the role too, through goal setting, feedback and performance reviews. Specifics of a role can take the longest to develop and facilitate, sometimes it canlast a month or even up to a year. The main focus is to define how their role functions within the company, interfaces with others, understand role processes, model best practices, and provide role specific resources.

The employee life cycle at your company needs to be designed carefully and be engaging during each stage. Similar to a consumer experience, one negative experience can create problems throughout an employee’s tenure. Onboarding is the critical first step in an employee’s experience.

So ask yourself: Do our employees see a future with us? Do we offer flexible, personalized career paths? Do we continually encourage career growth and provide opportunities?

The answer to all those should be, Yes.