Onboarding your new team member… the remote way

Onboarding new remote team member

Welcome to the team! Please keep your distance.


After the challenging effort of securing budget, advertising, interviewing and hiring a new or replacement employee, the very last thing you would like is for them to depart from the company. Sadly, that's usually the case with one-third of the latest staff checking out a replacement job at intervals of six months, and even 25% of them resigning before the year is up.


Regardless of the industry you’re in, the onboarding process is essential to build one’s engagement and loyalty, more so providing the applicable access and information required for them to do their job. Analysis from CareerBuilder indicated that 36% of organisations don't have a structured onboarding process in place within their companies.

With the ongoing swing to remote working, there are new obstacles to welcoming new starters. Onboarding new team members while not meeting them face to face could be a method most folks never have considered. So how do you make them feel welcome? Do we provide them with practical support for setting up their own workstations and channels of communication? Although the right answers can depend on each role, some components will apply to the bulk of winning onboarding efforts.


1. Checklists

It may appear bureaucratic; however, checklists help make life easier. Set one up in Planner and go through it for each new employee to make sure things don’t get missed out as a result of you not walking past their table everyday.


2. Automatic Processes

The vast collection of information like taxation, superannuation, necessary dates, etc. is a noticeable candidate for automation. Digitising this method lowers error rates and missed info, and also eases the work of busy managers, permitting them to target additional personal components of onboarding. Technical onboarding components like system access, hardware allocation and Group membership are readily accomplished with a Power Automate flow.


3. Get social

A formally arranged social video catch up helps everybody get acquainted with each other. People may feel anxious concerning proactively organising social events when they start, and a regular Teams lunch meeting that's already a part of the work week can take the pressure off. WebVine does it every Tuesday and it continually breaks the ice. A big welcome on the digital workplace home page plus a quick video chat with the Managing Director or Chief Operations Officer can be a worthy investment, as it shows your new team member that they're visible and valued.


4. Technical help

It’s all good with having a Teams lunch and a chat; however, if your new employee encounters technical problems, for sure they will be on Seek before you'll be able to say “turn it off and back on once more.” Give them comprehensive self-help info and responsive technical support and ensure they know how to access it.


5. Training

With restricted face to face time, it’s important that coaching be delivered effectively via user-friendly and appealing training materials. Videos, product demos, product info wikis, recordings of previous town halls… these are ideally provided in a logical order through the intranet. In a perfect world, topics on compliance such as security and physical safety training would record consumption and acknowledgement with reminders for those who have not yet completed.


6. Free stuff

It doesn’t all need to be digital. A welcome pack – delivered on time of course – could be a great way to welcome a new hire and communicate your culture to them. Water bottle, coffee cup, headphones, t-shirt, gift card, cupcakes… it’s awesome of you if you can include a signed note from the whole team. Whenever we have a birthday or a new starter at WebVine, we always collect messages from the team which are then written into a card and popped in the post.


For every dollar or hour you invest into onboarding your new team member, these will be returned tenfold as they settle in to become a more productive, valuable member of the company. For additional ideas on how your Digital Workplace can facilitate with onboarding and promoting your company culture throughout the organisation, please let us know.