How To Make Hiring And Onboarding More Consistent

Posted by Cathy Reilly

iStock_confused_new_hire_male.jpgDuring the hiring and onboarding process, a new hire is constantly trying to get their bearings. They’re figuring out how things work and what they are supposed to be doing in their new role. It can be a very confusing time.

But the process is harder to get a handle on if new employees are always getting different information about things like company culture and even their job. They need consistency so they can get up to speed and feel comfortable in the organization.

Here are five things a new hire needs from you to overcome the disorientation of the hiring and onboarding processes:

1. Accurate job descriptions

There’s no quicker way to implant thoughts of quitting in your new employee’s head than to have the job turn out to be different than they expected. A 2014 BambooHR survey found that 26 percent of new hires who had quit within their first six months, did so because the job was not what they’d thought it’d be.

If you’re using the same old job descriptions over and over again, chances are they no longer accurately depict the position or your organization. So when job seekers read one thing online, but get hired to do something else, they’re understandably upset.

Stop pulling a bait-and-switch, and start updating job descriptions before posting. Have current employees review them and let you know anything that may need to be changed or added to the duties and responsibilities listed. Also include as much information about the company culture and workplace as possible. That way job seekers have a clear picture of what it’d be like to work for the organization and don’t have to randomly guess and form incorrect expectations.

2. Mobile paperwork

Imagine you get hired for a new job you can’t wait to start. You’re excited about tackling all the new challenges it’ll bring your way and the chances it’ll give you to show off your skills. But then you go in on the first day and spend most of your first week filling out paperwork. You have to wait even longer to do what you were hired to do.

Instead of putting a new hire’s attention on a task they’ll never have to do again, give them the option to fill out paperwork via a mobile device. That way they can focus on what they’ll be doing each and every day and just fill out the forms when and where they have the opportunity.

3. Customized training

A 2015 Intercall survey found that 36 percent of employees feel the training they receive isn’t relevant to their position or career path. And that’s mostly due to one-size-fits-all training and onboarding.

If you’re striving for consistency, it may seem logical and convenient to have each and every new hire go through the same onboarding process. But in reality, it only gives employees a fraction of the tools they’ll actually need.

By giving each position more customized training, new employees can learn more in depth information about what they’ll be doing and understand the expectations of their performance. [click to tweet] If you’re unsure what to include and what to leave out, turn to your current employees -- especially those who were hired more recently -- to see what parts of the process are most important.

4. Consistent leadership

When a new hire gets overwhelmed or confused, they look to leadership for help and support. However, if their supervisors are not consistent with how they treat or communicate with employees, it can leave them feeling even more disoriented.

In fact, a recent study from Michigan State University found that employees with unpredictable bosses are more stressed out than those with bosses who are, to put it frankly, always a jerk. Imagine how powerful consistent good leadership would be for employees.

During the already stressful time of starting a new job, make sure you and the entire management team are on the same page. Ensure that no matter which leader a new hire goes to with a question, he’d receive the exact same answer.

5. An opportunity to give feedback

One of the best ways to build consistency into your hiring and onboarding processes is to check in with those who have gone through it. Asking candidates and new hires for feedback about how they feel processes went will give you insights about whether or not everyone is having a good experience.

Survey a new hire about when they might have been confused before and after they got the job. That way you’ll be able to see and address any areas that are unclear or providing contradicting information.

Being a new hire can be difficult, but even more so if every time you turn around it seems like the rules are changing. However, by focusing on consistency, you can ensure that each new employee is set up for success and is confident in your organization and their role in it.

What are some other ways to build consistency into hiring and onboarding processes? Share in the comments below!

Topics: Onboarding

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