It was recently revealed that a shocking 1 in 5 employees leave within their first 45 days of employment directly as a result of a bad recruitment and onboarding process.
It’s the one area of a business that HR and employers commonly get wrong with it often being overlooked or treated as an afterthought.
This can be detrimental to the growth and success of a business and leads to a high employee turnover rate – but the fix is simple.
By understanding the reasons why staff might leave so soon into their employment, employers can create a recruitment process and an onboarding strategy that reduces turnover and increases employee retention.
What is meant by ‘onboarding process’?
The onboarding process refers to the steps that are put in place to help new employees acquire the knowledge and skills needed to work effectively and settle into the company.
This can include everything from receiving a company handbook and contract of employment to colleague introductions and training.
Surprisingly, some organisations don’t even have an onboarding process in place which can leave new starters feeling lost, isolated and unhappy in their new employment.
What happens when recruitment and onboarding go wrong?
The first issue that is likely to create a high turnover rate is the recruitment process, or lack thereof.
When it isn’t done right, it can be a huge cost to a business, particularly if a lot of time has been put into finding the perfect candidate with specialist skills and they resign to work for a competitor.
This typically occurs when the organisation hasn’t been completely honest or thorough in the job advertisement, so the new employee discovers a few unwelcome surprises when they start the job. For example, an employer may not disclose the fact that the employee might be expected to work unpaid overtime with the new starter not finding out this piece of crucial information until they receive their contract or a few days into employment.
When the role or the company don’t quite live up to expectations, or are not what they were advertised to be, the new starter is highly likely to look elsewhere for a job better suited to them.
Another reason for high turnover can also be down to the fact that the new employee may find that they don’t get along well with their team or feel as though they don’t suit the work environment, which is something that would have been established before being offered the job if a good recruitment process had been in place.
In cases where the recruitment process is strong, the failure of the company could lie with the steps that follow; the onboarding process.
If a company seems disorganised by not supplying the new employee with their contract on time, or if the organisation doesn’t put forth the effort to give the new employee a tour of the premises or introductions to their colleagues, this can set a bad first impression which may leave the new employee feeling unhappy and dissatisfied with their newfound employment.
When either, or both, the recruitment and onboarding process are not robust, the implications for a business can be huge, as a high turnover rate means that:
- Money and time must continuously be put into recruiting to fill these roles, as well as the administration that goes into the resignations
- The organisation’s ability to achieve their strategic goals could be prevented or slowed down
- The company performance can decline where certain roles are not being filled
- Time and money must be invested into inducting and training these new starters
- Current employees may be overworked while trying to cover the post during the period where there is a vacancy
- The company’s reputation may be negatively impacted
Therefore, it is important to be thorough with your recruitment process and establish a great impression from day one with new starters by putting an excellent onboarding process in place.
What constitutes a good recruitment and onboarding process?
A robust recruitment process is all about being as transparent and rigorous as possible without making the process too long or exhaustive for either the company or the candidates as this can be off-putting too.
Most companies have a three or four stage process in place which typically starts by asking candidates to send a CV and cover letter as an application for the role.
This will then be followed by an over the phone or face-to-face interview for those who are shortlisted and then a follow-up interview (usually with someone else on the team or a director), trial day, or some sort of test if the role requires specialist skills.
The idea of the recruitment process, once you have narrowed it down to a handful of candidates, is to find both the right person for the job and for the candidates to establish whether the job is right for them too.
Therefore, it is important to be transparent about the company and the role at every stage, give the candidates an opportunity to meet some of the people they will be working closely with and see the premises on which they will be working, as well as test their knowledge and skills where necessary.
Once you have met all these requirements with your recruitment process, assess the strength of your onboarding strategy.
A foolproof onboarding process should tick the following boxes:
- Provide new starters with all employee documentation within the first week so they are aware of company policies and expectations
- Give them a complete tour of the premises and introduce them to all their colleagues
- Provide them with a tidy desk/workstation and any equipment they need to start working
- Give them all essential training from day one
- Schedule a regular, one-on-one meeting with their line manager to address any questions and check in with them
With all those items in place, new starters should feel happy, productive, engaged and motivated, and retention rates should greatly improve.
If you’re unsure as to where you are going wrong, or where you could improve, you could start by getting feedback from any recent starters at your company and see what they suggest.
You could also invest in the support of an experienced and qualified recruitment specialist…
How we can help
At Guardian Support, we offer an extensive Recruitment and Onboarding Service that is carried out by our inhouse recruitment expert and partner.
The aim is to provide businesses with end-to-end support with their recruitment and onboarding process so that the pressure and additional workload is taken off of their hands and placed with a professional who has years of experience in successfully recruiting employees for businesses across all industries.
This will also ensure that your recruitment and onboarding process is far superior to competitors, and contributing to higher retention rates, a more productive team and a flourishing business.
This service includes:
- An initial call with your dedicated recruitment expert to establish your needs and understand the role
- Drafting of job descriptions and adverts
- Placing and managing the job adverts
- Sifting through CVs
- Shortlisting candidates
- Arranging interviews in line with your schedule
- Providing all interview paperwork including tests and questions
- Sitting on the interview panel
- Providing feedback to unsuccessful candidates
- Checking references and issuing contracts/handbooks
We are a more affordable and more comprehensive alternative to a recruitment agency and we’re so confident in our ability to find the perfect candidate for you that we offer a free replacement service if a hire doesn’t work out within the first 3 months of employment.
To find out more about our Recruitment and Onboarding Service, call us today on 0845 2626 260