These days, over 15% of companies worldwide are entirely remote in their staffing. Such companies need hiring and onboarding processes that match their specific needs. So, how do you make remote onboarding work smoothly and regularly and help people get used to the organization?
Below, we list several pieces of advice to help you with your onboarding program. As you read, think about how you can incorporate each element into your existing process to help remote employees feel comfortable in.
Get the Company Excited about Hiring
As remote employers, you must remember that there is not the same grapevine as in a physical office. It would help if you made sure that a new hire is not a surprise and that people look forward to the day they join.
In any daily communication leading up to their joining, let people know who they are and explain their skillset. Specify who they will work with and what role they will take on, describing how they can help the company do better moving forward.
You need to be this individual’s “hype man”, talking up their potential so everyone can become excited by their addition to the team.
Also, as even remote workplaces are a social arena, inform people of any quirks about this person you are aware of. This way, it can allow people to form questions about their interests and get excited about their arrival in the organization.
Have a Comprehensive Pre-Arrival Procedure
Before your new remote talent joins your systems, ensure they are well-prepared. Have a list of steps they should take to learn about your company and your processes, as well as any other information they might need.
Ensure that the new hire receives and has an opportunity to sign their contract long in advance. This way, you have the assurance that they are with you and are unlikely to move on elsewhere before joining.
Create a detailed list of all the online links they might need to use to access your systems. Then pass them this so that you know they have everything they need.
If you have any specific methods for completing tasks, such as using time tracking software, ensure they have access to these too.
Lastly, ask if the person has any specific needs and how you can help them overcome them. It might include closed captioning in remote meetings or other methods to help with disabilities.
Use the Buddy System
Assign one person to act as a point of contact for the new hire; if they are not their manager, even better. This person should consider themselves available for any new employee’s question. It does not matter if these queries are small or redundant; the buddy should take them seriously.
Doing this can help the new hire overcome any first-day nerves and prevent them from worrying if they cannot find or resolve something small.
Create a Community
Should you hire more than one person simultaneously, try to give them all shared documents they can edit. Allow them to create help documents and files they can all use to help one another.
Bring these new hires together now and then, for example, around once every few days, set up an hour meeting between them. They can start sharing tips and tricks for the work they have been doing, and you might be able to learn a thing or two from them.
Match the Onboarding to the Hire’s Needs
Not everyone will respond the same way to the hiring process. If you find that the hire is striking ahead and does not need as much handholding, do not feel that you need to go through everything with them.
In the same way, sometimes people might need a little bit more runway before take-off. In this case, give them everything they need, and they will get off the ground once everything starts to work with them. Do not worry too much about this, as sometimes nerves or new job stress can get to any one of us.
Gamify the Experience
During remote work, people will not be there to check over someone’s shoulder. As such, you can help a new hire by making the onboarding process as friction-free as possible. Here are a few ways to make this occur:
Use a visible method to tick off each task someone has when they start.
Many online project management systems allow for this, so try to see what you can create. Although, you could do a lot worse than making a shared spreadsheet checklist that they can edit as they go through each step.
Alongside the checklist, see if you can use a progress bar to show how far the user is through their onboarding. It can help them feel relief when they approach completion, allowing them to gain a sense of work toward a set goal.
Have daily reminders of what your new hire needs to complete the next day. As their role is a new one, they might need a little bit of a push to get over their first hump.
You can combine these reminders with relevant links to your blog or a similar site. By doing this, you might be able to shine a light on how their work affects your output. It could give the new hire a sense of agency in their workplace.
Make Remote Onboarding Work For You
You probably have a much better idea now about how a comprehensive remote onboarding process can help you and your new hire. But while you might know “how”, first things first, you must work out “who”.
We can help you bring in remote workers, not only from local areas but from across the world. Our experts are on hand to discuss your needs and start the process to get the hires you need. So, contact us today!