With remote work becoming the new normal, businesses need to focus on creating a positive experience for their newly hired remote employees. The onboarding process sets the tone for their tenure with the company, and it plays a critical role in determining their success. During onboarding, remote employees need to feel welcomed, included, and thoroughly engaged - but that’s easier said than done. At Work Friendly, we’ve found a balance of tactical logistics and emotional efforts can help successfully integrate a new employee into your company culture. Here are some of our favorite ideas for tackling remote onboarding:
- Ensure employees receive equipment or other job essentials in advance of their first day
- Invest in technology to ensure document collection and benefits enrollment is streamlined
- Provide them with video introductions to the team, including best contacts for certain SMEs or technical questions
- Provide them with remote work best practices, covering topics like time management, communication tools and maintaining healthy work-life-integration
- Host virtual on-the-job training sessions or lunch and learns, so employees can quickly get integrated into their roles
- Have well documented SOPs so the employee has resources to turn to for self-paced learning
- Clearly outline the first 90 day expectations and create personal development plans so employees know you're already invested in their growth
- Send a personalized welcome kit, with written notes from team members, company swag, or their favorite snacks
- Pair them with a buddy, who can be their go-to for answering questions and providing insights into company dynamics
- Organize virtual storytelling sessions, where employees can share both their personal stories and their journey with the company so far
- Use Slack (or other IM platform) integrations that create fun icebreakers, trivia questions or other games that help employees get to know each other
- Establish a feedback loop to ensure you are getting real time thoughts on how your employee is feeling throughout their first couple of months
Onboarding for remote associates is a vital aspect of setting the cultural tone and overall company experience. A successful onboarding program should be created with remote employees in mind, focusing on tactical support and emotional engagement. Remote associates who have experienced a supportive onboarding process will be more engaged, productive, and tend to stick around much longer than those who have not. To achieve a thriving remote team culture, companies must develop and implement a successful onboarding program that caters to the needs of remote employees. Not sure where to start? Work Friendly has helped countless companies ideate and implement remote onboarding programs, let’s chat!
Author Jessica Young, is a Work Friendly People Expert with more than a decade of experience. Working first-hand with both Fortune 500s and fast growing start-ups, Jessica understands the power of creating a strong culture and sense of belonging at work.