October 27, 2023
To uncover the best practices for making employees feel connected to company culture during onboarding, we asked eight top executives and HR professionals to share their strategies. From implementing a buddy system and group activities to creating an interactive onboarding experience, these leaders provide valuable insights into effective onboarding practices.
By clearly communicating our values, mission, and vision, we try to make new employees feel connected to our company culture during their onboarding process. Whether remotely or in-person, we ensure that the relevant team members meet the new employee.
We also give the new team member access to all the necessary files and information they need in order to get started. There is also space for questions and clarifying expectations. And we share the team’s humorous "10 Commandments" for having a good time while at work. The purpose of our onboarding process is to foster a sense of community where everyone can thrive.
Onboarding is an important process for both employers and employees to ensure that employees become fully assimilated into the company culture. Our organization emphasizes building connections early on by assigning each new hire a buddy from the same department who will provide them with invaluable guidance, perspective, and support. We believe this helps foster an extended sense of community within our company.
One example of how we promote connection during onboarding is with group activities that challenge our new hires to collaborate towards a common goal. It gets everyone out of their comfort zones and provides insight into different skill sets while giving everyone the opportunity to get to know each other on a more informal basis.
Letting employees in on the inner workings of the organization, and not just their own daily job functions and responsibilities, is important.
As soon as onboarding begins, it's crucial to show employees not just what they will do daily, but also how what they're doing is going to impact the bigger picture. This creates a connection between the employee and the organization right from the start.
One of the major ways we ensure employees feel connected to our organization during onboarding is to give them information specific to the business and our broader goals, rather than “keeping them in the dark” about the wider processes of the company. The more open a business can be, the more accepted new employees will feel as they immediately understand the broader mission.
One of our deepest core values is transparency, so we go beyond during the hiring and onboarding process by being open about our pay.
Candidates and employees get access to salary ranges for their level, role, and location because we feel it's so important to share and discuss rather than leaving hires in the dark. When you let employees in on this data during onboarding, that dedication to transparency shines through with tangible proof you prioritize fair treatment and compensation.
Nobody understands a company’s culture better than its existing employees. They can be a company’s cultural ambassadors, helping new employees understand and adapt to the company’s values, culture, and practices. In addition, communicating company culture shouldn’t be left solely to HR or the manager. Everyone can take part.
We consider the onboarding process to be everyone’s job, and the existing employees have been pivotal in providing peer support and mentorship. In addition, getting all employees to work together toward achieving a common goal has a positive impact on fostering and maintaining company culture.
Behavioral assessment and discussion ensure the new employee feels connected with the company culture during onboarding. This assessment helps the company identify whether a new employee's behavior aligns with the company's core values. During discussions, reinforce the importance of values and how they guide behavior in the workplace.
Discussions following behavioral assessments define how to interact with colleagues, clients, and supervisors in ways that reflect the company's culture. Behavioral assessment allows employees to ask questions to colleagues and vice versa. An organization can make the onboarding process smooth and exciting through open dialogue.
Behavioral assessment serves as a valuable tool during onboarding to reinforce company culture. When new employees start to understand the company culture, they feel comfortable. It helps them begin their work effectively.
One of the biggest issues with onboarding is that there's a lot of information directed in a one-way learning approach where the new employee is expected to digest and learn too much. This can sometimes be overwhelming, unproductive, and a waste of time. Instead, we focus on making the onboarding experience more interactive and engaging, which instantly reflects our company culture and work environment.
By creating a series of tasks, the new candidate will be exposed to a hands-on experience with different team members and departments, and is expected to perform an activity, engage with others, or learn by doing. This helps create a more fun and productive onboarding experience.