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The Onboarding Advantage

When it comes to onboarding younger team members – developing an authentic connection within the first 90 days is now a critical success factor.  

Yet, most companies aren’t intentional.  

In fact, after all that effort to recruit a candidate away from their last job, working through all the parts to interview the right person, and finally putting together a compelling package and offer…roughly 60% of companies aren’t actually prepared for their new hire’s first day.  

Are you ready?  How about for their first week?  How about that that critical first 90-day window when they are wondering if they’ll stick it out or not?

The big idea:  Making an offer to a candidate isn’t the end of your journey, it’s really just the beginning.

Why should you care?

1.     Longer retention equals more productivity.

2.     Recruiting talent is costly.  The national average is $4,000k per (source:  Glassdoor) and it goes up the higher the salary.

3.     Speed to onboarding equates to a faster return on your investment.

4.     Company morale is negatively affected by poor hires and high turnover.

5.     Your competitive advantage is what you and your people know how to do.

Our company, PlaybookBuilder helps companies build onboarding playbooks by coming onsite to shoot videos and share that content in a secure, web-based knowledge platform we call a Playbook.  Doing so helps new hires learn about what’s expected of them and how to become a positive part of the culture…even before their first day.   We’ve helped hundreds of companies to gain a competitive advantage when it comes to recruiting and onboarding.

If you’re taking your onboarding efforts to an LMS or other knowledge management portal, etc. you ought to know that while video is an amazing tool and competitive advantage – it’s important to adhere to some basic rules to secure the type of results you’re after.

After more than a dozen years doing this sort of work, here’s what we’ve learned:

1.     Fake videos of the CEO repeating a canned presentation behind the desk aren’t cutting it anymore.  Your audience is looking for you to be authentic, real, even vulnerable.  Be you.  Whatever your natural style is will work… but let them in.

2.     If you’re NOT the gushy, demonstrative type don’t lose any sleep.  It’s more important to just be you.

3.      Overdoing it with fancy videos isn’t required to create a powerful and positive impression.  In fact, the formality of an overly produced video can create barriers of authenticity, cost management, and speed of deployment.  Keep it simple.  Move fast.

4.     When you share your goals, be sure to explain the big picture.  We seldom take the time to explain strategy to entry level people…but today’s recruit not only wants to know where you’re headed, they might just decide to leave because you didn’t share.

5.     Bring the team into it.  Let others help paint the picture of what it’s like to work there, what makes the company great, and how people there can flourish

6.     Set clear expectations for performance, behavior, and a code of conduct.  Let no one ever accuse you of not being deliberate, clear, and direct with your most important instruction.

7.     Rinse and repeat often.  If you’re done growing or evolving as a firm then this bit isn’t for you. But for the rest of us; your onboarding should evolve as fast as you do.  So don’t make it a big, expensive, drawn out thing.  Do it well and with quality…but focus on relevance and immediacy.

This is a new era.  The young candidates that you’re seeking aren’t just looking for a paycheck and the next “cool gig”.  Many are looking for meaning, purpose and a connection to other like-minded people through work.  Open your mind to what onboarding could be and you’ll see that showcasing your culture, your incredible people, and the passion you have is exactly what’s needed to bind new people to your cause, bring out their best, and onboard them with ease.