How to Create New Employee Onboarding Quickly
Do you remember how you felt on the first day of your job? No doubt it was a mixture of excitement and anxiety—along with feeling a little overwhelmed. And it’s no wonder. Even something simple, like finding the employee break room, can be a daunting task when you’re brand new! Besides navigating the actual workplace, you also have to navigate who’s who. And then, there are all the new company policies, procedures, products, services, and systems to sort out. It’s a lot to learn all at once!
So, how can you keep your new hires from feeling overwhelmed, and make sure the onboarding experience is smooth and easy for everyone involved? One way is to take that new-hire experience and create onboarding training that’s available online. By putting training materials online, your newbies can take it anywhere, anytime—on their laptops, tablets, and smartphones, whether they’re working remotely or in a company office.
Other big benefits of online onboarding training include:
- Empowering new employees by giving them the basics they need to be productive right away. Empowering newbies also leads to better retention and stronger teams.
- Delivering training content and company messaging in a consistent way—an important consideration when you want to get people up to speed with the company’s values and standard procedures right from the start.
- Freeing up classrooms and trainers saves loads of time, money, and resources. It also helps you onboard a large number of new employees more efficiently.
If online training, also known as e-learning, sounds like the smartest way to provide new employee onboarding, then you might wonder, “How do I create it?” Well, you’ve come to the right spot! In this article, we’ll walk you through what you need to know to create new employee onboarding quickly and easily. And we’ll show you how putting new-hire training online will help you save money and streamline your onboarding process. Let’s get started.
Identify the goals of training
A study shared by SHRM found that new employees who went through a structured onboarding/orientation program were 69% more likely to remain at the company for up to three years. Clearly, having an effective onboarding program can dramatically impact your company’s retention efforts, and potentially, its bottom line as well!
As you consider ways to get your onboarding training online, it’s helpful to frame that effort around goals—like increasing employee retention.
A good way to understand the goals of online training is to start with an understanding of what’s working well with your current program—and what’s not. Identifying the gap between where you are today and where you need to be will help you focus on the most critical training goals.
Start by looking at some key data points around employee job satisfaction and retention, and then solicit perspectives from people managers and newly hired employees. It may seem simple, but just asking a few questions can help deepen your understanding. For example, you can start with questions like:
- What’s working well with how people are onboarded today?
- What’s not working well?
- What do you wish you’d known when you first started working here?
Map content to goals
Once you have a clear vision of your training goals, and you’ve gathered all the source content you need, don’t rush to create online training! First, you need to make sure you’re hitting learners with the right amount of content that’s aligned to your training goals. That way, learners won’t feel overwhelmed. And you can ensure they’re focused on learning exactly what information they need to be most effective in their new role.
To make sure you have the right level of detail, sort through your source content, dividing it into two categories: need-to-know information and nice-to-know information. The need-to-know information is where you should focus most of your training efforts since it’s the most critical content for meeting your goals. The nice-to-know information can be removed entirely in some cases. Or, you can include a link to it, so it’s still available to learners, but not required.
Translate classroom activities into virtual interactions
One of the challenges with moving from a classroom to a virtual environment is replicating a similar level of interaction and audience engagement. Interaction is crucial for getting knowledge to stick with folks long after they’ve completed training.
Here are a few creative ideas for translating some common classroom interactions into e-learning interactions:
Take learners on a tour with a labeled graphic. Using a still image with clickable markers that contain images, audio, or video is a great way to give folks a virtual tour of your office space so they can find their way around.
Use video for software and systems training. If YouTube’s ubiquity is any indication, most of us are pretty comfortable learning software from how-to videos. Use this comfort to your advantage by recording a simple screencast that walks learners through exactly what they need to know.
Bring policies and procedures to life with a rich scenario. One of the ways classroom trainers breathe life into lessons is by giving learners a chance to practice them in a realistic scenario. You can mimic this type of immersive experience by creating lifelike scenarios that give learners different options to choose. Each choice can offer feedback that deepens their understanding.
Of course, these are just a few ideas. There are so many more things you can do. And that’s the fun part of creating online training: using your imagination!
Create and deploy your online training
You’ve nailed down the scope of your content, and you’ve thought of some fun, interactive ways to present it. So, now what?
At this point, you’re almost ready to create your new employee onboarding training and get it into the hands of your online learners. But first, you’ll need to understand a few things about the history of developing online training. So, let’s take a brief look at the old way of creating online training—and how the process works today.
The old way
Some organizations can take weeks, even months, to create and deploy their online training. Many rely on specially trained e-learning professionals who use “authoring apps”—stand-alone software for creating online training. Then, when the e-learning pros have finished creating the training, there’s another lengthy process for handing off courses to an administrator who uploads them to a separate system known as a learning management system (LMS).
Obviously, using multiple people, apps, and systems to create online training doesn’t necessarily help these companies stay ahead of the employee engagement and retention curve. But today, more organizations are retooling their approach to online training, particularly for onboarding new employees.
The new way
Human resources professionals and training organizations are ditching all the hassle and expense of maintaining multiple apps and systems for online training. Instead, they’re choosing intuitive, all-in-one training systems like Rise. Rise is a simple, one-stop shop for creating online training and getting it into the hands of learners, faster than ever.
That’s because Rise is easy to use—you don’t need special skills, software, or technical expertise. No longer will you have to hand off training development to an e-learning developer and wait for them to find time in their busy schedule to turn it around.
Rise also includes loads of rich, easily customizable interactions such as labeled graphics, scenarios, and sorting activities, as well as accordion and tab interactions. These interactions help you break up information, so it’s easier and more engaging for your newbies to learn and absorb.
And with Rise, you don’t have to start building your online training from scratch! Many onboarding programs include content that reinforces company policies and culture on common business training topics such as workplace harassment, workplace bullying, and basic communication skills. With Rise, you’ve got a library of prebuilt, gorgeous lessons on a wide variety of topics such as these, right at your fingertips. You can drop lessons into your course and customize them in minutes.
And once you create your lessons, sharing your course with learners is a cinch. There’s no separate system to mess with, and you don’t need to wait on an LMS administrator to upload your e-learning. Just publish your course with a few clicks, and enroll your new employees in the onboarding learning path.
You can also monitor how new employees are faring with their training. Rise includes reporting that gives you and your people managers insight into new hires’ progress—especially during those critical first few weeks and months that they’re on the job. By knowing where your newbies are struggling, you can deliver more targeted training to get them the support they need—before they become discouraged or start to doubt their decision to join your company.
Let’s net it out
Online training is a natural fit for employee onboarding. And it doesn’t take a lot to translate what you’re already doing in the classroom to an online onboarding course. To get started, identify your training goals and then make sure you’re covering the right depth and breadth of content to support those goals.
Also, take time to envision ways to translate classroom activities into virtual interactions that can engage learners. And finally, quickly realize a return on your online training investment by choosing an all-in-one training system that makes it easy for everyone in your organization to create and deploy interactive, engaging e-learning that works on every device.