Creating a positive onboarding experience is necessary for the happiness and success of your newest remote hire(s). See below some of the things Wavestaff thinks is most important when creating a flawless onboarding experience for new team members.
Welcome them to the team!
This may be common sense - but we’ve seen many companies skip this step. Help your newest employee feel welcomed on the team. Perhaps have everyone send a quick message introducing themselves and expressing their excitement for a new member of the team. Or, send an email on behalf of everyone about how thrilled you are that they are joining the company, and encourage others on the team to chime in.
Set up a daily schedule for their first few weeks - or even months.
Is this one of your first remote hires? A good way to assure they are staying on track throughout their onboarding process is to send over a schedule of their daily activities for the first few weeks or months. Include the times they will be training and what they should be doing around that - fill up every minute of their day if possible (including when they should lunch). This will ensure they stay on track and have some guidelines to help them plan out their days and set them up for success.
Consider sending them their daily schedule/expectations before their first day!
It may be helpful to share the schedule/expectations with your newest hire(s) before their first day. Whether that be their daily schedules or the platforms/tools they will be expected to use (and master). This might give them time to read up on everything and do some research so they aren’t just thrown into the fire. It is good to know what is coming and may help ease their nerves.
Assure they have all the tools needed to be successful.
Check-in and make sure your new hire(s) have all of the tools needed to complete the job. How is their wifi, computer, phone, etc. Will you be sending them anything? If so, assure it will arrive before their first day. Ask them what you can do to help them set up their home office and see if they are missing anything.
Get tips from current employees!
Your team might have the best advice about onboarding a new employee. They might remember something they thought was missing or a tool that helped them the most. Perhaps reach out to your current team and ask them what they think is most important when bringing on a remote hire. Since they have all gone through the training process, they might have some great recommendations on onboarding the newest remote employee.
Consider setting up a remote work policy.
Whether it be hours they are expected to be available or tasks that are to be completed each week and/or day. It is always good to have this in writing for your employee to reference to assure they are following the guidelines and completing everything they are expected to get done.
Ask for feedback!
It is always good to ask your new hire what they think. Are they happy with the onboarding process? Is it working for their particular learning style? Is something missing? They may have useful feedback to help shift their onboarding plan in a way that will help them achieve more. This would be useful for future hires as well. If they feel like something is missing, touchbase and see if you can help them feel complete.
This one is important. Your new hire should feel like you are there if they have questions or concerns. Create an open space and allow them to call/text/email if they have any questions or need something. Your new hire shouldn’t hesitate to call you if they have any questions or need help with something. Especially being remote, it is important to stress that you are available for any questions or concerns throughout their day.
Create a sense of community on the team
Consider partnering your newest hire up with a recent hire to be there for them. Whether that be checking in to see how their day went, what they did over the weekend, or if they have any questions about their training. It is always good to have someone on your team you feel comfortable with, even if it’s just chatting about your day. A recent hire may be able to relate in a way that your direct manager does not.
As you can see, there are many different angles a company can take in creating a seamless onboarding experience for their newest remote hire. Whether you follow every recommendation on this list or just one - a warm welcome to the team is a great start. Don’t expect a perfect onboarding experience for your first remote hire - but continuously checking in for feedback and comments from both the new hire and the current staff is a great way to get there. If you have any questions or comments, reach out to us and we are more than happy to chat. I mean, remote working is becoming the new norm - why not share all the expertise?
Written by Katie Kelly