16 Best Practices For Remote Onboarding

Sep 21, 2022
16 Best Practices For Remote Onboarding

There are several best practices for remote onboarding. Use these steps to ensure a smooth transition for your remote employee. Incorporate video calls and speed-dating questions to meet new coworkers. Incorporate peer mentoring, and ensure remote employees are equipped with all of the necessary resources. The best way to overcome any differences is to develop a checklist and use it to help remote employees succeed in your company. Few custom software development companies use their own onboarding software. Read on for more tips.

Collect remote employee feedback

Providing an engaging onboarding experience for your remote team is a crucial part of engaging your new hires and retaining them long-term. In fact, 87% of team members stay with a company that invests in employee onboarding. On top of that, companies that invest in employee onboarding experience enjoy 54% higher productivity among new hires. A cohesive remote onboarding process relies heavily on documentation, anticipating the needs of new team members, and continuous improvement.

To improve your remote onboarding experience, gather feedback from your employees during the process. Surveys are one of the easiest and most effective ways to collect feedback from remote employees. To create a simple survey, use an employee pulse survey tool. There are guides available online on how to create an onboarding survey. Ask new hires for their feedback at two-month intervals. Make sure to collect the feedback so that you can review and implement any changes you find useful.

During remote onboarding, new employees may have questions about the company culture or the history of the company. If you can provide answers to these questions, it will help the new employee feel more connected with your company. You may also want to introduce new employees to tools such as DocuSign to streamline the document signing process. As with any new process, collecting remote employee feedback will help you improve your onboarding experience for future hires.

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Ensure they have the resources they need

Before your new remote employee begins work, ensure they have the resources they need to succeed. Providing the necessary technology systems and training will ensure the remote employee has a smooth onboarding process. This can be accomplished through the use of a career portal. The portal can include a virtual tour, walkthrough of the company's onboarding process, and FAQs. The HR department should also play a key role in remote onboarding.

During the onboarding process, companies should make a big deal of the first day of work for the new remote employee. Many companies fail to take note of this first day. However, according to the 2015 ADP Onboarding Study, a structured onboarding process helped employees feel more connected to the company. Moreover, these employees reported a higher level of satisfaction than those who didn't experience a structured onboarding process.

When onboarding a new remote employee, ensure that they are engaged in several projects. Include new employees in problem-solving and crisis situations. Reward them for accomplishing tasks and goals. This will make them feel seen and appreciated. As far as team building activities go, schedule regular virtual meetings with the whole team to encourage continued team building. This way, they can learn more about their new role and the company culture.

Introduce them to the team interactively

When introducing new hires to the team during remote onboarding, try to create an environment that will facilitate team-building. Creating a shared Google document or Slack channel for the remote team will help new hires to feel welcome and comfortable, and it will also give them opportunities to ask questions of their peers. It is important to offer new hires non-critical tasks to help them learn as quickly as possible. If possible, assign a mentor or peer to shadow them and help them become familiar with the team's culture and work style.

Create a template for the onboarding process, with tasks and check-ins to be completed. Encourage new employees to connect with the team by holding a virtual meet-and-greet and using the virtual breakroom to play some games. If remote onboarding is a must, make sure to incorporate live video chats and social interactions. Ensure that new team members have everything they need to be productive from day one.

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Leverage peer mentoring

Leveraging peer mentoring in your onboarding program can have a number of benefits. It helps new employees bond with their team and ramp up in a remote environment. It also gives the new hire an opportunity to ask questions without consulting management. The best peer mentors are enthusiastic employees who are eager to welcome new team members. You can ask them for advice and help on how to navigate the remote environment. Here are some of the ways to leverage peer mentoring in your onboarding program.

Matching a new hire with a peer mentor with similar experience is an effective method of facilitating remote onboarding. When selecting peer mentors, make sure they have a stellar performance record, are team players, and have a successful track record in a remote environment. Peer mentors should be identified and assessed using 360-degree assessments. You can also use 360-degree assessments to provide diverse perspectives. Prospective mentors can also benefit from comprehensive trainings that focus on key skills. You can also use resource groups to share the successes of your peer mentors.

Reinforce core company values

Require employees to sign a pledge to uphold your company's core values during remote onboarding. A remote workplace requires a consistent culture. The most successful companies have core values that are embodied throughout their operations. By enforcing these values throughout the onboarding process, you can help your team live these values and make them an integral part of their work life. Here are some ways to do this:

One of the most important things that you can do to build engagement with your remote team is to reinforce company values. By communicating these values throughout the entire process, employees will feel connected to the organization. They can also publicly recognize and reward employees who go above and beyond the call of duty in the company. Reinforce company values throughout the onboarding process by involving remote workers in company-wide awards and other recognition programs. Encourage employees to publicly recognize and reward each other when they live up to your company's values.

Remind employees that company values are essential to success and to the success of the business. You can do this by surveying employees to assess their understanding of the company's values and to solicit feedback on how to improve them. If necessary, create a training program to reinforce these values and to help your employees integrate them into the company's operations. Continual reinforcement of company values is critical in keeping the culture alive and relevant in your business.

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Hold frequent one-on-ones and assign mentors

To make remote onboarding a successful process, hold frequent one-on-ones with your new hires. These meetings are crucial for remote onboarding and are an excellent opportunity to get to know each other better. Holding frequent one-on-ones will help you build trust and motivate your team to do their best work. These meetings also serve as immune systems for your company, enabling you to address problems before they impact your company culture. Holding regular one-on-ones with your team members will allow you to give feedback, bounce ideas, and hold people accountable.

While a traditional first-day meeting includes lunch with the new hire, virtual work may put a damper on this tradition. Instead of a first-day lunch, consider holding virtual happy hours or coffee breaks to introduce the new hire to the team. Use these opportunities to acclimate the new hire to the culture and help him/her understand the workflows. In addition, use this time to give 360-feedback and discuss ongoing projects.

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Use multiple forums and touch points

Creating a company's virtual onboarding process may seem daunting to the average employee. But it is important that you make the process as smooth and easy as possible for both sides. Use video conferencing or online team meetings to ensure a smooth transition. List the steps involved and help new employees understand which channels are best for them. For example, if the company is located in a different time zone, create a forum where future new hires can ask questions and engage with previous on boarders. There are many common practices that are applicable to onboarding employees, but some are more effective in a remote environment.

Include training sessions in the onboarding process. Training sessions are typically longer and more complex than onboarding. It teaches the employee how to perform their job and the daily activities they will perform. While incorporating training into your onboarding process is recommended, you want to avoid going too far into the weeds in the early days. Ultimately, the goal is to help new hires gain confidence and feel like they are contributing to a great team.

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Use Microsoft Teams

Whether you have a small team or a large one, Microsoft Teams can help you manage your onboarding process. As a new hire, you can use Microsoft Teams to welcome your new team member, outline their responsibilities, and offer support. You can also use Teams to create onboarding tasks. Here are some ideas. All teams can share files with new hires. To get started, download the Microsoft Teams app and install it in your company's SharePoint site.

Ensure that your remote employees are familiar with Office 365 and Microsoft Teams. Microsoft Teams' interactive walkthroughs will help them become comfortable with the platform and actively explore its features. Moreover, you can offer them a demo account to check out the features before they purchase it. Microsoft Teams makes remote onboarding quick and easy, so you can use it for your remote employees as well. Try it today! Then, you will see how effective this approach is.

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Whether you have a small team or a large one, Microsoft Teams can help you manage your onboarding process. As a new hire, you can use Microsoft Teams to welcome your new team member, outline their responsibilities, and offer support. You can also use Teams to create onboarding tasks. Here are some ideas. All teams can share files with new hires. To get started, download the Microsoft Teams app and install it in your company's SharePoint site.

Ensure that your remote employees are familiar with Office 365 and Microsoft Teams. Microsoft Teams' interactive walkthroughs will help them become comfortable with the platform and actively explore its features. Moreover, you can offer them a demo account to check out the features before they purchase it. Microsoft Teams makes remote onboarding quick and easy, so you can use it for your remote employees as well. Try it today! Then, you will see how effective this approach is.

Make sure they’re a good candidate for remote work

In your application, ask candidates what aspects of remote work appeal to them. Ask them to describe their preferred working style, communication style, and technical skills. If a candidate does not mention these attributes, you may not be the best remote worker for that position. The answer may be that they do not enjoy the isolation of remote work, and you might want to move on. But if a candidate doesn't have any experience in the field, make sure you find someone who can adapt and succeed.

While remote work does allow for flexibility and freedom, there are some important considerations you should make. Candidates must have a dedicated work space, including a quiet area for meetings or conference calls. Ask them about their preferred communication methods and how often they communicate. Do they prefer text messages, Zoom calls, or video conferencing? Are they able to communicate effectively across distances and work effectively with a team?

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Help them start building their in-company network

One way to help remote employees get started with their in-company network is to provide the necessary equipment. While they may already have a high-speed Internet connection, a remote employee may be having trouble finding important documents in the home office file cabinet. This is where an updated router or a plug-in range extender can come in handy. Additionally, it may be helpful to provide items for the remote employee's home office, such as a docking station for their laptop.

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Have a virtual ‘speed dating’ process

One way to ensure that your remote onboarding program is a success is to use BambeeHR's technology. This solution helps you define and clarify your virtual onboarding process and prepare your new hires for success. Its platform enables you to conduct virtual interviews and team meetings and introduce prospective employees to potential collaborators. It can also set up a virtual team happy hour and include a live video presentation from a LinkedIn executive.

The first step in any remote onboarding process is pre-boarding. New hires should spend some time getting to know their teammates before the official start date. Having an online game to play can also facilitate this process. The sooner a new hire is acclimated, the faster they will contribute to the team. If you want to create a speed dating experience for remote hires, you can even play an online game that enables team members to interact.

Create always-on virtual environments

To ensure a smooth remote onboarding process, companies should give new employees a chance to meet the company's culture. To do this, they should be provided with access to company policies and assets, such as company websites. Since remote workers are largely dependent on technology, it is important to avoid issues that could prevent them from working properly. If this occurs, new employees can become demotivated immediately. To prevent this, companies can utilize learning management systems to automate training sessions and support culture initiatives.

While many companies have embraced remote onboarding, many still struggle with establishing a culture. A new hire has little stake in the company, which makes the onboarding process more difficult. To make remote onboarding successful, companies need to make new hires feel that they are a priority, and that they are welcomed with open arms. For example, HubSpot prioritizes training and offers new hires a series of optional training sessions in addition to a traditional workplace.

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Personalize onboarding

Whether your business is located across the globe or your employees are distributed throughout the world, personalizing remote onboarding can help new hires feel welcomed and settled into their new roles. To personalize remote onboarding, create a welcome kit containing company goodies and handbooks. Using a branded welcome kit can help ease new hire apprehension and streamline remote onboarding. New talent should be educated about your business culture and ethics, as well as best practices.

Using a virtual tool, such as Zenefits, can help new hires learn about your company culture, connect with colleagues, and complete important quizzes on essential topics. By leveraging technology and social media, you can easily personalize remote onboarding. You can even compile Q&As for your new hires, and include them in an onboarding document folder. This way, new employees can take the quiz whenever they have questions.

Set up a task board with scheduled tasks

Remote employees are not likely to be available for regular office visits. Therefore, remote onboarding requires more effort. A recent Gallup study revealed that 88% of employees were unhappy with their onboarding experiences. To make the onboarding process more successful, it's vital to understand how remote employees think and feel. To make the remote onboarding process as seamless as possible, you can set up a task board with scheduled tasks.

Before kicking off the remote onboarding process, make sure you introduce your new team member. Introduce them to everyone in the company and explain their role. Alternatively, you can arrange a video call with a few team members to introduce them to one another. This way, they won't feel lost or unheard. Make sure your new team member has a work email account. In addition, set up security measures for your email system, such as antivirus protection and hardware encryption.

Use self-onboarding checklists

Onboarding new employees is often a stressful experience. You may not be able to provide an in-person training to all employees, but you can still ensure that new employees feel welcomed by following your self-onboarding checklists. With the help of checklists, your employees can learn about the organization, connect with colleagues, and quiz themselves on essentials before their first day. With checklists, new hires can complete tasks that will make them feel more comfortable, such as taking photos, videos, answering questions, and scanning QR codes.

The first step in ensuring a smooth remote onboarding process is assigning a buddy. A mentor can provide initial guidance and help eliminate the anxiety many new remote employees experience. Moreover, use video coffee chats and other ice-breaker activities to break the ice. Some apps, such as Donut, allow employees to chat with a company representative through the internet. Onboard employees can also receive useful information about company resources, such as knowledge bases, training software portals, and cheat sheets.

 

About Author: This article is written by a marketing team member at HR Cloud. HR Cloud is a leading provider of proven HR solutions, including recruiting, onboarding, employee communications & engagement, and rewards & recognition. Our user-friendly software increases employee productivity, delivers time and cost savings, and minimizes compliance risk.