As CX becomes an ever-more potent market differentiator, it pays to look at your approach in detail to understand how industry leaders keep better people, longer. And how that creates a better customer experience.
In this three-part blog series, we’re shining the spotlight on a vital part of this process: onboarding. Onboarding shapes the way employees experience your brand and their roles. Investing in an engaging onboarding experience can boost employee retention among new recruits by 50% and productivity within the same group by 62%, according to the Harvard Business Review.
Creating a great onboarding experience means nailing three crucial areas: training, technology, and ongoing development.
In the first part of the series, we look at training—and how that isn’t always just about what you teach, but how you welcome new recruits.
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Fast facts on employee engagement & retention
Boost in employee retention you can achieve with engaging onboarding experiences
Productivity gains from effective onboarding
Increase in employee engagement by incorporating games into training, which also enhances productivity by 50%
Of employees who quit a job due to workplace culture say that their managers are the main reason they ultimately left.
Start before they start
Your onboarding process should begin the moment a new hire accepts the job.Send information that reassures them that they’ve made the right choice. We’re talking: a welcome kit of useful info, more details about their role, info about the company and culture, what the onboarding process will look like, and whom they can go to with questions.
Pre-onboarding and onboarding is a chance to get new team members excited about your company culture—what makes you, you, and why you do things the way you do. Introduce the team dynamic and the fun social events, friendly competition, or clubs they can get involved in. Even better if you have videos or photos of these activities.
Prioritize your culture
The values and guiding principles of your organization should heavily inform your onboarding process. If your culture celebrates the people behind the roles, make time for face-to-face meetings with newcomers, consider a mentoring program, and ensure teams have the chance to get to know each other socially.
Team bonding is crucial, especially when it comes to team leaders. The sooner your new hires feel comfortable asking their team lead for help, the better—so make sure they get plenty of facetime with them. This helps both parties pick up on physical cues from each other and accelerates the development of a great working relationship. Unconvinced? 58% of employees who quit a job due to workplace culture say that their managers are the main reason they ultimately left, according to the Society for Human Resource Management.
- Don’t wait: Start your onboarding activities as soon as a prospect accepts the job. Include culture statements, videos, and useful information about what to expect.
- Communicate your culture: Go heavy on the why of your company across the onboarding process and make sure there’s room for human connection—both professional and social.
- Make training engaging: Maximize the employee experience of your onboarding process. Curate for engagement with a mix of media, dynamic group activities, and games, which not only make training more fun but also enhance retention.
- Empower new hires: Let your new recruits know they’ve been hired to think and create, not just execute. And demonstrate your commitment to their development and growth by offering ongoing opportunities for professional development and a career trajectory.
Don’t forget the razzle-dazzle
Make training engaging. Asking your new starters to wade through an ocean of PDFs and PowerPoints won’t get anyone excited about what lies ahead. The use of videos, games, and other multimedia elements within onboarding can make a huge difference. Companies that include games in their training can increase employee engagement by 60% and enhance productivity by 50%, according to eLearning Industry.
If you run group training sessions, make sure they’re not overcrowded. The ideal size is about 20 agents, depending on the size of the room. If you’re onboarding remote agents, we recommend no more than 14 in a class to ensure engaged participation. You should also consider the “show-flow”. Having a mixture of self-guided tasks, team-building exercises, and instructor-led sections makes for a dynamic process. These considerations are especially important when training virtually.
Foster a strong sense of purpose
The best way to keep good people longer, is to empower them. At Ubiquity, we talk about our agents becoming co-authors of the process, rather than just executors. Find what that means for your business and make sure your training processes reflect it.
A great place to start is by reframing scripts to serve more as templates, and developing training exercises that encourage the use of creative problem-solving skills. Explain that a big reason you hired them is because of their strategic thinking ability. It’s also vital your templates give new hires robust way markers and red lines too. The structure will help them on their journey to CX excellence as they grow into their roles.