There’s a feeling in the air this week, autumn is coming and it’s back to school and work for many. With the cooler months in view and dare we say “countdown to Christmas” ahead, now feels like a good time in business to start thinking about recruitment plans for the rest of the year. Start off by thinking about the seasonal recruitment and additional employees you may be needing during this period. Once these plans and numbers required are in place, how you will get the new recruits onboard is a vital part of this process.
It’s all very well recruiting but turning new recruits into engaged and hard working employees takes time and resource. Whether you are recruiting 10 or 10,000 for the short or long term, Melanie Guy, HR Manager from webexpenses has some best practice hints and tips to help support this process.
Onboarding starts before the first day
While many businesses show off pictures of desks full of branded items and expensive technology ready for new starters, Melanie says that focusing on day one can be too late:
“Engagement with the business needs to happen immediately. Not later down the line when it’s harder to gain positive engagement.”
According to research carried out by webonboarding*, 69 per cent of HR professionals said that delays in issuing offers and contracts had caused them problems. And almost half (47 per cent) said they had lost their preferred candidate due to delays.
2. Engage early
Melanie recommends starting to embed employee engagement from the moment the offer is made, to avoid potential dropouts.
By keeping two-way communication open, HR teams can address any objections or concerns that their potential employee may have and get them back on track.
3. How manual processes slow you down
Manual processes affect the efficiency and accuracy of employee onboarding. Even basic tasks like getting onboardee’s to sign and return paper forms can slow things down.
With more than two-thirds of HR professionals saying they end up chasing candidates for information by phone and email, that’s time that could be better spent adding value to the HR function. Not to mention if you are recruiting a lot – this can slow this right down.
4. The cost of errors
Melanie recalls seeing a business asking for advice on LinkedIn after the incorrect salary had been quoted in a contract and not spotted until much later. When webonboarding asked businesses about contracts and offer details, almost half (45 per cent) said that inaccuracies have created future issues for their organisation. Those can be costly mistakes to rectify.
Manual processes can continue to cause problems when onboardee data is entered into HR and payroll systems. A simple mistake such as keying in bank details incorrectly can cause financial distress for a new employee, not to mention giving a bad impression of the hiring company. Yet 58 per cent of businesses manually transfer personal data.
5. Room for improvement
From webonboarding’s research we know that HR decision makers spend 24 per cent of their time on the onboarding process. So there’s clearly room for improvement, to make onboarding more efficient and cost effective for businesses.
Businesses surveyed reported that it cost them on average £195 per hire to issue contracts on top of recruitment expenses. That can quickly mount up to significant costs for large scale recruiters.
Given the number of HR and recruitment systems available, it’s perhaps surprising that the onboarding process continues to be manually driven in most businesses. Melanie says: “Onboarding is something that’s often overlooked from a technical and human point of view. And there’s definitely scope for these two areas to go hand in hand to enhance the experience for both the onboardee and the hiring organisation.”
*Onboarding research carried out by webonboarding 2016.