5 Ways To Improve Your Employee Onboarding Training Process
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All Aboard: Secrets To A Successful Employee Onboarding Training Process

Employee onboarding is a great way to introduce new hires to a company's culture and workflows, and make them feel welcome.

The main ROI of new hire onboarding, though, comes from its impact on your employees' lifetime value [1]. A successful onboarding process has employees starting off on the right foot and getting productive faster.

With that in mind, here are 5 actionable tips to help you build the perfect employee onboarding training process:

1. Share Your Culture

They say that you never have a second chance to make a first impression. Well, your onboarding program is precisely this one and only chance to make a good first impression on your new hires. One of the most common mistakes in an enterprise onboarding training program is restricting it to mere skills training with a sprinkling of orientation.

First and foremost, your employee onboarding training process is the perfect opportunity to expose new hires to the company's vision, history, and culture. It is where you get to explain new employees not just what their responsibilities are, but also your company’s values, its unique proposition, and the vision that drives your successes. Sharing the company's history and culture will make new hires feel part of something bigger than a job—a business heritage—, and inform their connection to the company and the ways that they approach their work.

2. Mind The Gaps

When designing your employee onboarding training process, don't just stick to a rigid predetermined set of courses. Instead, adapt your training program to the needs of your learners and use it to close any skill gaps that they have.

First, of course, you'll need to determine which those skill gaps are. For this, use the tests, quizzes, and survey functionality available in your LMS to check on your new employees' knowledge (or lack thereof). Then, based on your findings, split your learners into groups, and give each group a customized training curriculum. If, for example, most of your new hires are familiar with MS Excel, spare them the tedium of having to undergo an "MS Excel for Beginners" course—but do offer it to the rest of your learners.

3. Unite And Conquer

Your employee onboarding training process should not begin and end with a ready-made body of eLearning content. Often, the best way to learn a specific technique or business workflow by having another, more experienced, colleague teach you face-to-face (or, well, face-to-screen).

Take advantage of the knowledge and expertise of your senior employees, and set up in-person training sessions where they will assist in the onboarding of new employees. It doesn't matter whether you run those training sessions in an actual classroom or as online webinars. Just pick the form that's more convenient for you and your learners—and, if possible, offer both kinds of sessions.

What's important is to get senior employees to come together and connect with the new hires that they'll soon be working with, and to mentor them through their sharing of their real-world insight and hard-earned professional experience.

4. Keep An Eye On Your Onboarding Progress

Don't let your employee onboarding training process run on autopilot. Continuous monitoring is the key to the success of an onboarding training program (or any training program for that matter).

After all, if you don't keep abreast of your learners' progress, how will you know whether they're making any? Or whether your training content and approach were any good, to begin with?

To be able to answer those questions, you need to leverage your LMS reporting functionality to see how your learners are doing both collectively and as individuals. Keep an eye on their grades and course completions, but also on indicators of study effort, such as the number of logins, session attendance, and time spent studying. (If your LMS supports gamification, also keep an eye on your learners' scores and overall ranking). Use this information to identify learners that are faltering or have trouble making progress, and offer them further assistance (and possibly a personalized learning plan).

5. Embrace eLearning

A great way to increase engagement in your employee onboarding training program is to give your learners the freedom to study from anywhere they want, at any time that they feel like.

For this, you need to step up from the conventional classroom-based training (if you haven't already) and embrace online onboarding. Invest in a full-featured LMS platform, like TalentLMS, one that not only has all the right features for onboarding, but can also be used across your employees' career, and in all kind of training scenarios. After all, onboarding training is just one stop on a journey that also includes pre-employment training, skills training, compliance training, certification, soft skills, and leadership training, and more.

Note that online training in 2018 has moved beyond the shackled-to-the-desktop learning experience. To make your onboarding program 2018-compliant (and increase learner freedom and engagement), you should also embrace mobile learning. Offering a mobile web version of your learning portal is a decent start, but only allows for a "lowest common denominator" mobile learning experience.

Instead, opt for a learning platform like TalentLMS that supports a true native mobile application experience. A real mobile LMS application will run faster, be lighter on the battery, and provide more functionality than a "responsive" mobile web page. Plus, a native mobile application can be more easily made to work offline—for the ultimate in learner freedom and convenience.

Conclusion

This concludes our little list of 5 highly practical and easily actionable tips for turbo-charging your employee onboarding training process.

If you have any tips of your own, we’d very much like to hear them. Drop us a comment below, and share your tips and suggestions for achieving the best onboarding experience with the rest of our readers.

Oh, and if you're looking for a full-featured LMS to put our tips into action, give TalentLMS a go. Its free-for-life basic account comes with all the tools you need to start creating your onboarding program.

References:

  1. The Role of Onboarding in Employee Lifetime Value: Part 2
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