What is remote onboarding?

Remote onboarding is the process of incorporating a new employee into a company and familiarizing them with the company culture and policies, so they can become an effective and contributing member of the team implementing technology of video calls and tech tools.

A good onboarding process is reminiscent of boarding a plane. At the beginning of an adventure, you’re greeted by someone who’s happy to have you. They help you find your seat and get acclimated so the flight will be comfortable and you’ll get to your destination safely.

Though remote onboarding takes place virtually, the process is inherently the same as face-to-face onboarding.

Remote onboarding programs should help new hires:

  • Understand their roles and responsibilities
  • Get acquainted with the online platform they’ll be using
  • Learn the company culture, policies, and protocols
  • Meet their teammates
  • Feel welcome

Why should HR leaders care about remote onboarding?

Implementing an effective remote onboarding program is the key to achieving:

  • Retention
  • Engagement (from the very beginning)
  • Loyalty

Remote onboarding is essential, especially for employees who are dispersed throughout different cities or countries. It lays the groundwork for new hires to smoothly transition into their new role. Just as an uneasy child would need a warm welcome on the first day of kindergarten, a new employee will appreciate a well-planned onboarding process. The smoother the remote onboarding process is for the new employee, the greater the chances they will become an effective, long-term contributor to the company.

What can HR do to ensure a smooth remote onboarding process for a new employee?

It’s best to send a new employee a welcome email on their first day which includes:

  • Resources they will need
  • Step-by-step checklist explaining how to get set up on company platforms and channels
  • Information about company culture, vision, values, and mission  

Team members can also reach out to work cooperatively with the new employee.  Whether they kindly offer tips or collaborate on an assignment, this interaction allows the new hire to smoothly transition into the new position. HR can also match up the new employee with a buddy, who’s available to answer questions, provide encouragement, and mentor the new employee.

How can successful remote onboarding improve company culture?

The remote onboarding process is the first step in building a relationship with a new employee. A company that invests in a new employee’s well-being through a thoughtful onboarding process is well on its way to increase long-term employee engagement, retention, and overall job satisfaction. Caring for an employee’s needs from the very beginning can have a far-reaching impact, establishing a foundation for a healthy, thriving, and attractive company culture.