Marlou op 10 February 2022

Digital onboarding, how does it work?

You've known about 'onboarding' for a long time, obviously. The big change in this area is that the introduction and familiarisation of new colleagues has to happen (partly) online these days. And that has both advantages and disadvantages. How can a digital tool help?

Since we've been chained to our homes for almost a year, most organisations are already quite digitally savvy. We (unwillingly) use tools as Zoom all the time, but it's starting to crack. We miss the connection with each other. Colleagues who have known each other for a long time will get through it. But how do you ensure that new employees also get a soft landing in the organisation?

Everything depends on good communication

Good communication is essential in the onboarding process. Especially when new employees start online. Therefore, make sure that from day one they remain hooked and engaged in what is going on in the organisation. Did you know that you can easily provide a lot of static information in the onboarding programme online via your organisation's internal communication platform? Think about the vision and mission of the company, the leave arrangements or frequently asked questions. This way, new employees are immediately provided with important information.

However, much of this information only really comes to life if it is also communicated in person in interaction with others. Think, for example, of an introductory meeting with the management or a digital tour of the company. With the right combination, you ensure that new employees can ask questions about all the information they receive and keep in touch with colleagues.

Promote online meetings

A meta analysis of seventy studies shows that it is extremely important that employees feel socially accepted. New colleagues want to be initiated into the organisation and quickly feel that they belong there. They do not want to have to figure everything out for themselves and they like to receive personal guidance. By integrating better into the social network of the organisation, new employees quickly gain access to information and knowledge. So the better you introduce new employees, the easier they get into their roles, and the more productive and happy they are. But also the more likely they are to become engaged and enthusiastic employees who will stay with the organisation for a long time. Therefore, stimulate online connection.

At Plek we do this by adding employees to important groups on our own communication platform before they start their job. We also plan a series of introductory meetings in advance. Does your organisation regularly have a large group of newcomers? Then organise joint onboarding activities in a separate group. This saves time and is easy for HR, and gives new employees a chance to connect with each other.
We also advise people to take a look at our digital profile page feature. In addition to practical information about employees (working days and contact details), it also shows which groups they are a member of and what they shared most recently. Useful to find mutual connections.

plek onboarding

Digital onboarding does not stop at day one

The word "onboarding" says it all: getting on board. But what happens once your employee is on board? There are countless situations in which onboarding or reboarding can play a role. Think of reorganisations, mergers, strategy changes, or if your organisation is experiencing rapid growth. Collecting feedback on a regular basis helps to gain more insight into situations in which reboarding is necessary. You can do this, for example, by sending out (possibly anonymous) surveys to the entire organisation, or to a specific group. Or by asking colleagues via a form or quiz how they are doing. This way you not only keep in touch, but you also collect insights into how people are doing and you can assist in difficult situations (new corona measures or another major change). Adjustments can be made digitally. At Plek we have a special programme manager for this. It allows you to set up a programme to provide people with clear, new information (static or otherwise). That way they are always informed, engaged and able to move forward.

Want to know more about our digital onboarding possibilities? Check out our onboarding page or contact us if you have more questions.