Virtual onboarding is here to stay – and we’re better off for it

Virtual onboarding is here to stay – and we’re better off for it

Before the Covid-19 pandemic, most companies undertook all of their onboarding activities for new starters offline and in-person. Once lockdowns were implemented, many firms switched to a hybrid or fully remote working model for new starters. Unable to onboard the new employees in-person, demand for virtual onboarding took off and, as many companies have continued to enjoy the benefits of remote and hybrid working, virtual onboarding is here to stay.

The advantages of a good onboarding process are well known. It allows employees to understand everything they need to know about their role and hit the ground running. A solid onboarding process can improve retention rates by more than 80%, as well as increasing overall productivity by 70%.

Having a candidate onboarding hub is a useful way of supporting your HR team and new recruits during the onboarding process, especially for larger companies. In this article, we look at how these hubs can help deliver a great onboarding experience.

The benefits of having a dedicated candidate onboarding hub
An onboarding hub is an efficient way of overcoming the main challenges associated with virtual and hybrid onboarding, namely:

a) Reliance on time-consuming paper-based induction processes
b) Lack of clarity regarding roles and expectations
c)  Low levels of personalisation in onboarding
d) Delivering too much or too little information – leading to overwhelm or confusion
e) Failure to generate genuine engagement with colleagues, job requirements, or the company brand
f) Inconsistencies during the process

First of all, an onboarding hub ensures that instruction is delivered from beginning to end, irrespective of where staff are located. The disruption caused by Covid-19 exposed the downsides of in-person onboarding processes, and at the same time highlighted the need for a virtual delivery system that’s always accessible and functional.

A dedicated hub is also a valuable time saver for HR departments, as it consolidates all related onboarding tasks and information into a single place. An onboarding hub supports a wide range of activities, from scheduling to sending reminders, incorporating branding, and creating customisable tasks and checklists.

This last point is crucial when it comes to effective onboarding in business. Not every employee has the same learning style, so catering to diverse abilities and forms of learning is crucial to get information across.

An onboarding hub makes it easier to create personalised tasks using a variety of materials, which can instil confidence and prepare new employees for their role.

Finally, an onboarding hub promotes engagement and facilitates learning during the entire process. They provide an online space where employees can engage with co-workers and mentors in a more informal setting than the physical workplace – but with more structure than a purely remote/ home-based onboarding process. This aspect of onboarding hubs can help bring cohesion to the team, irrespective of whether your staff work remotely or at the office.

Remote onboarding support from Blue Octopus

At Blue Octopus we’re experts in making Virtual Onboarding deliver results for small and medium-sized businesses. Our team is always on-hand to help employers create a smooth onboarding process that can be integrated with our Octo Platinum ATS, or with your existing ATS, depending on your preferences.

Visit our Candidate Onboarding Hub Product Page to discover the full range of benefits that await you.

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