The Top 10 Reasons Your Onboarding Program Sucks

by Sabrina Son on Dec 14, 2015 11:00:00 AM

The_Top_10_Reasons_Your_Onboarding_Program_Sucks_1There’s a reason all those new talented people you hire either leave within a year or seem to be disgruntled after a week or two on the job: your employee onboarding program is terrible.

But all hope isn't lost. The fact that you’re reading this article indicates that you understand your onboarding program could improve. And you’re taking proactive steps to do exactly that. With that in mind, let’s take a look at 10 reasons why you onboarding program sucks — and what you can do to make it better:


1. You waste weeks or even months before making a decision

We’ve all been on the job search before. When a company bites, you get excited. That said, you shouldn't keep your new hire wondering when their start date is. The top candidates have no shortages of offers, so streamline your hiring process as much as you can.


2. You don’t give candidates a realistic job preview


Be sure to tell candidates exactly what they’re getting into during the interview process. Nobody wants to sign up for one thing only to have to do something completely different.


3. You send your employees to school

Think back to your younger days. Ever sit in a room for eight hours listening to someone drone on about what’s expected on the job? It’s depressingly boring. The right combination of time, technology, and interactivity should smooth the training process.


4. You communicate in one direction

Learn what your new hires’ voices sound like on day one. Nobody wants to be talked down to all day.


5. You expect new hires to be rock stars right away


Even the most talented folks won’t be able to seamlessly blend into a new company overnight. It’s okay to expect a lot from your new hires — just don’t expect it right away.


6. You don’t really care about your new employees’ strengths

Each worker is different. The best way to ensure your new hires are stoked about their new jobs is to play to each of their strengths. Let the salesperson who used to be a copywriter put together a call script, for example.


7. You forget to introduce new hires to the team

Even the most social butterflies will have a difficult time being the only unknown person in the room. Don’t leave your new hires out to dry — introduce them to everyone on the team on day one.


8. You treat all new hires as the same exact person


If you hire a content producer who has five years of experience and one who’s fresh out of college at the same time, don’t talk to them like they’re carbon copies of one another. The more senior employee will probably be pretty put off if you do.


9. You don’t plan social events for new hires

It’s one thing to get to know your new coworkers in the office. It’s quite another to have a conversation over a pint. Don’t wait until the holiday party to create an environment that allows new hires to socialize with their peers in a nonwork situation.


10. You never stop to rethink your approach to onboarding

Your onboarding process should always be a work in process — times change, after all. For the best results, get in the habit of reviewing your program every so often.

The smoother you make your onboarding process, the more likely it is your new hires will be comfortable on, say, day four of work (or at least day 12). So make some changes — what do you have to lose?



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This post was written by Sabrina Son

Sabrina is the managing editor for the TINYpulse blog. A Seattle native, she loves her morning (or anytime) coffee, spending her weekends on the mountains, and of course, the famous rain.

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