We’ve talked about video interviewing, and applying online, but what about remote onboarding? The good news is if you’ve hired someone who won’t be working on-site, you can still implement an effective onboarding process.
I’ve said it once, I’ll say it a thousand times: Your employee does not need to sign their new hire forms in person. Neither does your new employee or their trainer need to sit for an hour reading a pamphlet together and initialing every page. Instead, have them sign or go over the literature ahead of time, and have your trainer talk to them afterward to summarize and answer any questions.
Having this kind of preparation ensures that the employee can get to work on day 1. So, their workstation is another essential component you ought to have ready before their start date. If they are using a company laptop and phone, get it to them. Test out their wifi, set up VPNs, and give them access to their accounts and software. It’s bad enough getting to a new job and not having a computer ready for you; you’re stuck trying to learn looking over someone else’s shoulder. But when you work remotely, your new recruit is sitting on their hands, worrying about making a bad impression when in reality, you’re the one who got them started off on the wrong foot.
Once your new employee has actually begun working, many of the same on-site onboarding steps can still apply! Make sure to have the manager check in with them personally and set expectations. Give them an achievable goal and keep track of their progress. Assign a workplace buddy to show them the ropes. Many companies benefit from using an online learning portal like Slack for employees to access training resources and work with other team members.
Put plainly, there is no excuse to skimp on onboarding for remote workers. But you can also help yourself during the hiring process. Look out for candidates who are self-motivated, accountable, and computer literate. Find out how they learn best and if that will work with what you have to offer. And definitely, don’t forget the references!
Here are some more resources you can check out for onboarding remotely:
Kael Campbell is President and Lead Recruiter of Red Seal Recruiting Solutions, a company providing recruitment services in mining, equipment and plant maintenance, utilities, manufacturing, construction, and transportation. When he is not recruiting, Kael spends as much time as possible with family in the great outdoors and on the water. He volunteers his time as a Board Member of the Entrepreneurs Organization of Vancouver Island. We have a wide variety of services to help you find the best employees. See how we can help on our Recruiting Solutions page.