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Neglecting onboarding for remote employees is a recipe for disaster.

I first came across Pranav Bakshi when my team at Learnsure was hired to train the HR department at a rapidly expanding e-commerce company. As part of the training program, we were tasked with conducting assessments of the HR team’s skills and knowledge.

During the assessment process, I encountered Pranav Bakshi, the HR manager at the company. Despite his many years of experience in the field, it quickly became clear that Pranav had a lot to learn. 

Then I learned about the HR disaster he had caused. 

When his company decided to hire a new remote employee, Pranav didn’t give it much thought. He sent over the paperwork and set up a quick video call to introduce the new hire to the team, but that was the extent of the onboarding process.

At first, everything seemed to be going well. The new employee seemed eager and motivated to get started. But as the weeks went by, it became clear that something was wrong. The new employee was falling behind on tasks, missing deadlines, and generally not meeting the expectations of the team.

Pranav brushed off the concerns of his colleagues, insisting that the new hire just needed more time to get settled in. But as the problems persisted, the rest of the team started to lose patience. Productivity was suffering and morale was low.

Finally, the straw that broke the camel’s back came when the new employee made a costly mistake that resulted in a significant loss for the company. The error could have been avoided with proper training and support, but Pranav had neglected to provide either.

The company was in a state of crisis, and it was all due to Pranav’s lack of attention and care. He had taken his job as HR manager lightly, and it had led to a disaster. The company was forced to let the new employee go and spend time and resources recovering from the mistake. It was a wake-up call for Pranav, and he learned the hard way the importance of properly onboarding and supporting remote employees.

Pranav’s story is not unique. Many companies struggle with onboarding remote employees, and the consequences can be serious. Poorly on-boarded employees are more likely to struggle with their work, feel disconnected from the team, and eventually leave the company. This can lead to a loss of productivity, morale issues, and increased turnover.

In this blog, we’ll explore the consequences of neglecting the onboarding process for remote employees, and why investing in a thorough onboarding program is essential for the success of your remote team.

Consequences of neglecting remote onboarding

Decreased productivity: Neglecting the onboarding process for remote employees can lead to decreased productivity as new employees may not fully understand their responsibilities or how to effectively complete their work. According to a study by the Society for Human Resource Management, 56% of employees who received inadequate onboarding reported lower productivity during their first year with the company.

Higher turnover rate: Remote employees who do not receive proper onboarding may feel frustrated or unsupported, leading to a higher turnover rate. A survey by the Wynhurst Group found that companies with a structured onboarding process had 50% higher retention rates compared to those without.

Lack of company culture: Onboarding is an important opportunity for remote employees to learn about the company’s values, mission, and culture. Without proper onboarding, remote employees may feel disconnected from the rest of the team and the company as a whole.

Miscommunication and errors: Without clear guidance and support during the onboarding process, remote employees may struggle to communicate effectively with their colleagues and may make mistakes in their work. This can lead to delays and disruptions in the workplace.

Decreased morale: Remote employees who are not properly onboarded may feel undervalued or unimportant, leading to decreased morale and job satisfaction. According to a survey by Glassdoor, a positive onboarding experience is one of the top factors contributing to employee satisfaction.

Decreased team cohesion: Onboarding is an opportunity for remote employees to get to know their colleagues and build relationships with them. Without proper onboarding, remote employees may struggle to connect with their team and may feel isolated in their work. This can lead to decreased team cohesion and collaboration.

Reduced efficiency: Remote employees who do not receive proper onboarding may have to spend more time trying to figure out their tasks and responsibilities, leading to reduced efficiency in the workplace. According to a survey by the Workforce Institute, companies that provide comprehensive onboarding experience an increase in efficiency by 70%.

Negative impact on customer experience: If remote employees are not properly onboarded, they may struggle to provide high-quality customer service or support. This can lead to a negative impact on the customer experience and may result in customer churn or loss of business. A survey by Zendesk found that companies with strong onboarding processes have a customer retention rate that is 36% higher than those without.

The key to successful remote onboarding

Despite the potential consequences of neglecting the onboarding process for remote employees, it is possible to conduct thorough and effective onboarding to ensure that new hires feel supported, integrated, and productive in their roles. To do so, companies can take the following steps:

⚡Clearly communicate expectations and responsibilities: Make sure that remote employees have a clear understanding of their tasks and responsibilities from the outset. This can be done through training materials, job descriptions, and regular check-ins with managers or mentors.

⚡Provide the necessary tools and resources: Ensure that remote employees have access to the necessary tools and resources to complete their work effectively. This may include software, equipment, and access to relevant information and resources.

⚡Foster connections with colleagues: Encourage remote employees to connect with their colleagues and build relationships with them. This can be done through virtual team-building activities, regular check-ins, and online social events.

⚡Offer ongoing support and training: Provide ongoing support and training to ensure that remote employees have the opportunity to continue learning and growing in their roles. This may include regular check-ins with managers, access to learning resources, and ongoing training and development opportunities.

By following these steps and investing in a thorough onboarding process, you can ensure that your remote employees feel supported and successful in their roles. Don’t make the same mistake Pranav made – invest in your remote team, and watch them thrive.”

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