I thought I would give you another taste of what we learned from Brandon Hall Group’s 2016 Onboarding study, but if you would like to learn more – and there is a lot more – attend our complimentary webinar, What is New in Onboarding? on Oct. 19 at 1pm Eastern. shutterstock_309698858

When I started this Onboarding study, I hypothesized that many organizations are now taking advantage of a practice that is relatively new — pre-boarding new hires before the first day of work and that they are involving managers, mentors and other stakeholders outside HR and Learning and Development in the onboarding process.

Both practices can have a very favorable impact on new hires. Pre-boarding can keep that new hire engaged with the organization during that sometimes lengthy gap between the signing of the offer letter and the first day of work. It can begin to provide insight on the organization’s culture, mission, and values and introduce the new hire to their leaders, managers, and co-workers. Some of employment paperwork can be completed during this time frame. And the overall effect can be to shorten time-to-proficiency, which is a very valued metric among HR professionals.

Involving managers, leaders, mentors outside of HR and L&D in onboarding can be very beneficial to new hires and to the process itself. Involving managers and leaders will ensure that they understand what is being covering during the process, contribute to its effectiveness, and have a chance to express their perspectives. New hires will get an opportunity to make a connection with these individuals, ask questions, and get a realistic view of the organization. Mentors greatly enhance learning during onboarding and facilitate assimilation.

Making Headway on Pre-boarding

What I found out is that organizations are making some headway with respect to pre-boarding.

More than half of the organizations are at least taking some advantage of the pre-boarding process. These are the practices most administered by organizations both during pre-boarding and onboarding: employment paperwork (59%), assimilation into the organization’s culture (36%), orientation on policies, values, mission (35%), assessments (34%), and benefit enrollment (33%).

However, a really surprising finding is that a substantial percentage of organizations are not administering some practices at all, whether it be during pre-boarding or onboarding: assessments (51%), social networking activities (57%), mentoring/coaching (46%), and orientation on diversity policies/programs (26%). All of these practices really help to ensure new hire engagement, connection, and that the new hire will have a successful career at the organization.

Involvement Outside of HR/Learning and Development

Not surprisingly, for more than six in ten organizations said the roles most involved in onboarding are as expected: HR professionals (76% involved, very involved or fully dedicated), the hiring manager (67%), and Learning and Development (62%).  The good news is that for about 42% of the organizations, co-workers/peers and/or business unit or department managers are involved in onboarding.

Unfortunately, only 32% of the organizations get the benefit of really involving mentors or coaches during onboarding. That is disappointing. Involvement of mentors and coaches can really enhance new-hire learning during onboarding and can extend it to on the job work experience.

So, like the pre-boarding process, organizations are making some headway with involving stakeholders outside of HR and L&D in onboarding.

Daria Friedman, Principal Analyst, Talent Acquisition, Brandon Hall Group

Daria Friedman

Daria Friedman is the Principal Analyst overseeing the talent acquisition practice for Brandon Hall Group. Prior to Brandon Hall, Daria led the research practice for Bernard Hodes Group, a recruitment solutions agency, and Findly, a talent acquisition software service provider. Daria’s focus is on conducting talent acquisition research on topics such as candidate experience, employer value proposition validation, onboarding, candidate experience, retention, internal communications, career site messaging, talent pool assessments/supply and demand, employee engagement, campus/graduate recruitment, brand perceptions/positioning, best practices, diversity, market/competitive dynamics, talent acquisition metrics, source-of-hire/job search dynamics, employer preferences, employee benefits, technology purchase preferences, and more. She has produced many thought-leading and award-winning research studies at Hodes, including: Healthcare Talent Metrics, The Growing Value of Employer Brands, RNs at Risk, The Collegiate Career Mindset, The Employment Conversation - How Employers and Talent Meet on the Social Web, and Playing for Keeps/Recruiting for Retention. Daria developed Industry Matters, a monthly newsletter that provides insight on the talent landscape from both an economic and talent acquisition trend perspective. She has conducted research globally across many industries, such as Healthcare, Technology, Insurance, Finance, Hospitality, Telecommunications, Defense, Law Enforcement, and Retail. Daria is skilled in quantitative, qualitative and secondary research methodologies. Daria has an MBA in Marketing from Fairleigh Dickinson University and a BA in French from Montclair State University.