5 Good Reasons to Include IT in Employee Onboarding

There are very few processes technology can’t improve in a business. In fact, IT can make things easier from the moment an employee walks through the door for the first time. First impressions last and one of the biggest mistakes businesses make with new hires is assuming the job’s done when they accept the role, when in reality, they’re just getting started.

Recruitment for key employees and popular skillsets take time, so if your business has bagged itself some new talent, chances are you’ve already invested heavily. The search may have started months ago, you’ve paid a recruitment company to organise interviews and negotiated on the package that would eventually win them over. So why stop trying the minute they decide to come onboard?

Onboarding 101

How you handle an employee’s first few days in the business is crucial. We’ve all been hired at some point by a business that was totally unprepared for our arrival and the experience is not a good one.

A lack of preparation can lead to the employee feeling out of place, unhelpful – a burden even. And in many cases, they’re at the mercy of another colleague stepping in, simply because they feel sorry for this ‘IT nomad’ who doesn’t know where to start.

It’s an embarrassing start for any business and is completely unnecessary. Onboarding using IT isn’t a new phenomenon and it’s something growing businesses will have to repeat regularly, so why not take a little time to crack it once and for all, and let the process run itself?

Here are five good reasons to get onboarding right from day one

1 - A good onboarding strategy can save money

Replacing an employee costs money and putting them on the clock (and payroll) before you have:

  • A desk
  • A phone
  • A computer
  • Login details
  • The right software
  • A functioning printer
  • An email address and account
  • Access to folders, online information and the company’s cloud

….all the things you need to make them a productive member of the team, is a massive waste of their time and your money.

2 - It speaks to who you are as a business

The onboarding process is the first step in the employee lifecycle and one of the most important opportunities you’ll get to demonstrate how you operate as a business, the kind of culture you foster and the importance you place on helping employees settle in.

Using smart technology, less paperwork and automation, businesses of any size can create fun and engaging onboarding processes that:

  • Allow employees to take more ownership of the onboarding process
  • Make the process more dynamic, efficient and effective, and
  • Empower new starts with the tools, information and access they need to start contributing as soon as possible

3 - It arms the employee with the right tools to do their job

Different roles need different tools and by including your IT experts in the process, you can make sure any IT investment is business-appropriate and justifiable.

Roles and responsibilities can be assessed and recommendations made on the best devices, networks and software, to do the job well.

Machine management and parity has a huge role to play here too, allowing businesses to roll out like-for-like systems for employees who do similar jobs, or customised set-ups for more specialised roles like coders, designers or site engineers.

4 - It aids retention

Not everyone who walks through the door is 100% convinced about their new role. Sometimes jobs are offered on a trial basis or an employee might make the leap with a ‘we’ll see how it goes’ mentality.

Either way, it’s believed almost 90% of employees will decide whether a company is a good fit for them within the first few months.

According to this article in Forbes, close to 20% will leave in the first few weeks, if no one has given any thought to their immediate needs, such as setting up their devices, whether in-company or their own device, and providing necessary training.

5 - Employees will take onboarding as their cue on how to act

Businesses who adopt a lacklustre and unattentive approach to onboarding run the risk of setting the bar low. On the flip side of that, appreciation breeds motivation, so the earlier you invest in your employees, the sooner they’re likely to give back.

IT can support all of this and help grow your business

Onboarding shouldn’t be regarded as something to get out of the way, or even a single event. It’s the first step in what should be an exciting journey for each new employee and an on-going talent strategy for the business.

IT can help with that. If you have in-house resource or work with an outsourced service provider, ask them to put employee onboarding on the IT roadmap and make good on their knowledge and expertise to improve the process and make life easier for everyone.

Discover how IT can help in onboarding and all other aspects of your business.