February 2, 2021

Getting Maximum Value from Employee Onboarding Training

Getting Maximum Value from Employee Onboarding Training featured image

woman on laptopWhile ongoing training is an important concept — a way to keep your employees learning and improving for years to come — the moment of hire is the most critical time to reach workers with instructional content. There are several kinds of training available for your new employees, with each type having its own important role to play in welcoming these workers to your organization. Creating the right mixture of training from the start will help the relationship between company and employee start off in the right way.

What’s the Importance of Onboarding Training?

Creating a welcoming and comprehensive onboarding experience should be a priority for your human resources department. Because of how seriously the COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted the usual office-based employment model, traditional parts of an employee orientation process have fallen away. After all, someone working remotely can’t receive the same easy tour of the workspace and in-person introduction to coworkers. With these elements falling by the wayside, training is an especially important part of welcoming a new worker.

Training shows your business is investing in its people and setting them up for success. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) noted that it’s never too early to begin showing off the opportunities for career development and progression. When an employee’s tenure starts with adequate training for their role, they’re equipped to thrive. If that education comes with the promise of continuous development, coaching and specialized learning over the person’s whole tenure, that lays out an incentive for the worker to stay with your firm for the long haul.

When employees don’t receive such a comprehensive welcome, you may lose their attention during the critical early window when they are most engaged and excited. Human Resource Executive reported on a Harris Poll survey that found 29% of employees didn’t believe their companies did enough to give them a smooth start to their new role. Almost one-tenth of workers polled said they’d left a job because the onboarding experience went badly.

What Types of Employee Onboarding Training Should You Use?

What can you do to make sure your onboarding experience meets these lofty standards? Considering both the lack of in-person interactions in the “new normal” created by the COVID-19 pandemic and the increasing use of remote work that was already underway, the materials you use to onboard employees have to be digital in nature. 

Online learning platforms focusing on video-based content with interactive elements combine several useful trends to create a positive experience. The multisensory nature of the courses can make them more compelling than learning experiences based on static text or imagery. The interactive assessments play a useful role, too, as they help prevent viewers from tuning out the experience, immediately refreshing their knowledge.

The subjects you can take on with these course materials encompass a few broad topic areas, each with a role to play in creating the overall onboarding experience:

Compliance Training

While getting your workers up to speed on the ins and outs of certain business and interpersonal skills is recommended, there is another type of training that is absolutely required — compliance training. Ensuring your new team members are familiar with all relevant rules and regulations, as well as what is expected of them and their new coworkers, keeps your business in line with federal and state regulations and helps prevent future problems.

With more states issuing specific requirements for new hire training on topics such as sexual harassment in the workplace, it’s always a good idea to verify your business’s obligations for employee education. From the correct handling of chemicals to safe use of ladders and the proper way to practice nondiscrimination, compliance training covers a wide variety of topics, from industry-specific requirements to universal principles.

Industry-Specific Training

There are plenty of new skills to teach incoming workers, all of which depend on your organization’s sector and a new employee’s role. It’s important to select courses that reflect the real duties staff members will be called on to complete, and to verify your chosen materials are comprehensive and up to date. 

Many courses offer separate modules for rank-and-file employees and their supervisors, to help equip every team member with the necessary knowledge for their roles. Making sure every new worker is familiar with the ins and outs of their duties is a great way to both reassure them you have their success in mind and maximize their contributions to the company.

Soft Skills Training

Not every useful skill for a new employee is related to their day-to-day work. Some of the most impactful abilities for today’s workers are the interpersonal skills that help them communicate, collaborate and manage their own emotional states. While it may be tempting to view soft skills as something innate, these proficiencies can and should be taught.

Encouraging workers to engage with and become part of your company culture is easier when you are actively equipping them with the abilities you value most. Specialized training focusing on communication through digital platforms could be especially useful in the age of widespread virtual collaboration. 

HR Training for Instructors

One potentially underrated training subject to improve the onboarding experience consists of courses for your HR staff. When the employees who are tasked with running training sessions and orientation events for new hires understand the best practices of modern HR, they are better equipped to create a positive overall onboarding climate.

How Do You Begin Improving Your Employee Onboarding Training?

One of the most exciting parts of video-based online learning materials is the ease of adopting these courses. Since it’s simple and economical to add new courses to your organization’s training offerings, you can launch a new program quickly and add to and modify the options over time, giving your employees an up-to-date and optimized learning experience.

With onboarding being such an essential part of the employee experience, it pays to act as soon as possible to ensure your new hires are receiving top-quality training during their first days on the team.

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