Would you risk catching a prize carp without a landing net?

Onboarding is the action or process of integrating a new employee into an organisation “client onboarding is a critical time for any business” · “a little extra effort during the onboarding period can go a long way towards improving staff retention”

 The candidate of choice can often feel a little ‘in limbo’ between acceptance and commencement and as a result they may start to question their decision and doubt can set in.  Emotional ‘detachment’ from their current company can often be hard so engagement levels with their new employer needs to be high.  As a recruiter we hand over to our client once the candidate starts, we take a step back and hope things go to plan – after all we can only control the controllable.  We often find candidates can feel a bit ‘lost’ in the first few months – moving roles is challenging anyway but this is exacerbated when a planned and thoughtful ‘welcome’ is missing and can lead to disengagement at a crucial time.   First impressions count on both sides.

A staggering 70% of people who leave in their first 6 months, decide to do so in the first 48 hours, this is a frightening statistic that can be so easily reduced by simply improving your onboarding ‘experience’ getting new hires to buy into your company culture from before they even join.  Whilst the notice period is being worked other recruiters will still approach ‘your’ candidate to discuss competitive opportunities and ‘your’ candidate may start to reassess their decision if they are left high & dry without any touch points from you – their new employer.  Meanwhile as the client you are feeling confident, after all the contract is signed and the start date firmly in the diary, sorted, however this is not the time to sit back and let fate takes its course, complacency at this stage is dangerous and can be costly.

During the first 90 -100 days of any new venture we are invariably pushing ourselves out of our comfort zone, our senses are heightened, small issues can become big issues, we can feel vulnerable and question our decisions. People place a huge amount of pressure on themselves when they start a new role, its intense and expectations are high, particularly at the senior level.  Interestingly the more senior candidates often experience the worst onboarding, after all they are being paid good money why should they need support or hand holding, they are here to do a job and have the experience ….  sound familiar?

Unfortunately, most of us can relate to a poor or badly-organised introduction to a workplace. Getting the induction process right is critical, and is a one off, unrepeatable opportunity to reinforce to the candidate that they have made the right decision and sets them up for success.

So why isn’t this part of the process seen as critical as say the interview or the offer?

too busy (make time)

didn’t realise it was necessary (head in sand)

HR’s job (offload)

‘I didn’t get onboarded’ when I joined (attitude)

With a little bit of thought and application at this stage you will be able to set things up in the right way to give a better first impression, create a better culture and gain more loyalty for the long term.  It is in the interest of everyone to ensure the steps after acceptance are thought through, relevant, and positive.  No one ventures into the recruitment process expecting it to fall over at the last hurdle however this can be the outcome when the induction and onboarding experience is negative or even in some cases nonexistent.

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