Employee onboarding: how your HRMS can promote HR best practice


Effective onboarding lays the foundation for the future success of your new employees. Conventional wisdom suggests that employees get 90 days to prove themselves and that the first two weeks are critical.

With this in mind, you should be asking yourself how your HRMS can encourage better employee onboarding activity. Here are three key ways in which your HRMS can help.

What is employee onboarding?

Just to define our terms… Onboarding is the process of getting a new employee up to speed and productive in their new role. Beginning with their acceptance of the job offer, it includes giving them a lot of information (to ensure they understand what they are doing and why) and is focused on ensuring your ‘newbie’ becomes a fully-fledged member of the team as quickly as possible.

By the way, offboarding is – logically enough – the opposite process, focused on leaving employees and ensuring that they are appropriately ‘disconnected’ from the organization.

What are the steps of employee onboarding?

Of course, every organization is different and their onboarding processes will be likewise. However, the following steps should be common to almost all.

  • HR forms, records, policies, contracts, security passes, etc. – ensuring they are ‘in the system’ just like any other employee.
  • Prior to their first day, ensure that they understand the practical details of where to go and who to report to, plus need-to-know stuff such as dress code, parking, building access, etc.
  • Meeting and greeting – set up opportunities to meet key people in the first week at work (colleagues, key customers, managers, etc.)
  • Prepare their ‘workstation’ – ensure that not only does your new employee have a place to work but also everything they need to do the work (computer, phone, business cards, whatever…)
  • Reiterate (and elaborate on) the job description and responsibilities, ensuring clarity on how the role fits into the larger business.
  • Early on, agree on probationary performance evaluations and a development plan.
  • Monitor…

We spoke to the experts at Youmanage HR for some more insight, and they told us that, when it comes to onboarding, “notifications are an integral part of intelligent HR software, as they’re used to alert employees that an action has been completed for them, or when you require an employee to do something, like read a document or update critical information. This means a reduced admin burden for everyone and ensures important actions are completed on time.”

Benefits of HRMS onboarding

Onboarding is simple enough in principle but it’s a detail and information-heavy process, and as such can benefit from some HRMS automation.

1. It provides role and skills clarity

A new hire joins your company with knowledge about the role based on the job application process and discussions with HR, the hiring manager and other team members. Your HRMS can promote HR best practice by allowing the employee to review the required job skills, to enter their own talent self-assessment and to chart future career progression.

Find out about the best HRMS systems for your company’s onboarding with this HRMS comparison.

A hiring manager may focus on certain parts of the job description in an interview and some details may be lost in the employee’s excitement about the new role, so your HRMS is a consistent and clear way to provide all-around role clarification.

In addition your HRMS can drive training activities in the employee onboarding process. While you may have some general induction courses relevant to all staff, training needs often vary by role. As your HRMS contains employee and job details, you can do a skills match with the new employee and automatically apply targeted training throughout the first few weeks.

2. Social HRMS can make new hires feel more connected

Social HRMS is a great way to supplement onboarding activities for local hires as well as across global teams and organizations. Failed new hires often cite a lack of connection with peers and management as a reason for leaving a company. Social features in your HRMS can help to make positive relationships by announcing a new hire and making introductions to people in a similar role across the organization.

Social HRMS also assists in the onboarding process by providing insight into company culture, helping the employee to fit in sooner. Social HRMS can allow for informal brainstorming sessions on product issues and further knowledge sharing which connects the new employee to the company.

3. You can use checklists to monitor progress

Your HRMS can support your employee onboarding procedures by providing a systematic way to make managers and employees comply with the tasks you set - define deadlines for induction completion for both the employee and manager to complete some tasks. There is no reason to burden your HR staff with the administrative responsibility to follow up on completion when the HRMS can automatically send reminders to the participants and generate exception audit reports when needed.

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Dave Foxall

About the author…

Dave has worked as HR Manager for the Ministry of Justice for a number of years, he now writes on a broad range of topics including jazz music, and, of course, the HRMS software market.

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Dave Foxall

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