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Employee Onboarding: In Like a Lion, Out Like a Lamb
Thursday, Mar 16, 2017

A harsh winter entrance with a breezy spring finish is what has come to define the month of March. Although the weather can be unpredictable, the employee life cycle doesn’t have to be. Recruiting doesn’t end after an offer is accepted and shouldn’t halt on an employee’s last day either. Employees should enter a company eagerly and exit with an easy transition through the dynamic duo of effective onboarding and offboarding. Today, employer branding is more important than ever and a good strategy for transitioning employees in and out of the organization is key to maintaining a positive image amongst employees, new and old.

It is no secret that great processes don’t happen overnight, but luckily there are best practices to be followed to make the most out of onboarding and offboarding programs for overall recruiting success.

Make the Right First Impression with Automation

Time and time again we hear that first impressions are everything, but don’t forget that there is still work to be done after the interview process concludes. Employee onboarding software can do the trick to reaffirm a new employee’s choice to join your organization, especially because 90 percent of employees make the decision to stay with a company within their first six months on the job. Not sure what to look for to ensure your onboarding program is strong? Start by establishing a welcoming new hire portal that greets those who have accepted an offer with a central hub for information such as organizational policies, vacation calendars, information on benefits and important forms to be filled out prior to the first day. Pair up with automation to manage everything easily with automated workflows that monitor progress and share that with hiring managers and other stakeholders. With easy-to-use reporting capabilities, employers can see what is working for their organization and what needs to be improved to ensure a fully optimized onboarding program.

Make Temporary Employees Your Brand Advocates

Sixty-six percent of candidates think the best way to learn about a company is to interact with its employees. So, what would your past employees say about you? Many employers look at offboarding as the physical tasks of returning parking passes and badges, but it is also a great opportunity to leave departing employees with a positive voice for the company. Both onboarding and offboarding deliver the vital touchpoints that will ultimately decide how employees view the organizations’ brand, and if not handled correctly, an organization risks hurting their reputation as an employer of choice.

Former employees are free to speak their minds on social media. Many sources that your future employees may go to research the company such as Glassdoor or LinkedIn can cause damage for future recruiting if an employee who was rushed out the door leaves a negative review. Offboarding is a time to thank an employee for their work and conduct exit interviews to allow their voice to be heard while taking note of potential areas of improvement. When done right, you can simultaneously create a brand advocate that will speak highly of their experience.

Treat Departing Employees as Alumni of the Company

Employees may decide to leave, but that doesn’t mean they should necessarily be ruled out the second they walk out the door. It is very clear to an individual when they are in a company that values them, especially in the way offboarding is handled. Think about students who have put in years of work to a college or university. After graduation, they become alumni and the school benefits from their continued pride for the organization for many years to follow. Showing gratitude and treating former employees as “alumni” of the company goes a long way when it comes to employee referrals and the curation of future talent pools. It is also important to remember that employees that leave for a new opportunity are not always happy there, and may want to return. Similarly, interns or contingent workers could be great candidates for a full-time opportunity down the road. The last thing an employer wants is to lose out on great returning talent because of a poor experience during their employment. Maintaining relationships with both current and former employees will uphold the reputation of an employer while increasing chances of filling open positions with best-fit talent.

For a deeper dive into the onboarding portion of this equation, don’t miss How to Make the First 100 Days Count.