Since March, a majority of companies have been recruiting and onboarding talent remotely. Onboarding is especially hard during these current times since the employee is joining a new company from his/her home. It is harder to experience the culture and connect with other employees (ex: no spontaneous conversations).
We’ve shared some key learnings and tips that might be helpful to you as you onboard your next employee. Most companies surveyed have an intensive 1-2 week onboarding which includes a mix of group meetings and 1:1 meetings. For companies that have physical operations, the new hire will also spend some time out “on the field”.
It is the manager’s responsibility to help new employees ramp up and schedule meetings with relevant stakeholders with support from HR
Get founders and execs involved the first week
Provide an onboarding guide, an onboarding "buddy", and a structured and standardized
Don't have their first session be IT! Make sure you really emphasize the company's vision, mission, and core values, and let the employee know why you hired them in particular.
Send out post 60-90 day survey on onboarding experience.
Prior to Day 1:
Get equipment sent to employee (be aware of shipping delays due to COVID) and provide access to email, calendar and company wiki ahead of their first day.
Overview of company (mission, vision, values, history), product roadmap, and macro industry overview (ideally given by founders or exec team)
1:1 meeting with HR (set up payroll, go over perks and benefits) and IT (companywide software / security training for devices/data)
Team/Manager: best practices with internal communication; documentations
Welcome videos and how-to demos (consider using
Assign a buddy / onboarding mentor. Tip: try to pair with an employee in the same timezone
“Too many back-to-back meetings in the first week has proven overwhelming. It's important to provide blocks of free time, and social hours within the first 2 weeks.”
“ Create a company Wiki to direct folks including an onboarding guide. If wikis include contact information, make sure to revisit info. Be sure to provide a few main points of contact (HR contact, manager, onboarding buddy).”
“Create onboarding cohorts and set up an activity the cohort can do together. Be aware of companywide initiatives and don’t schedule an activity right before a product launch.”
Ideas for creating a memorable and positive onboarding experience:
Data aggregated from companies that have University Recruiting programs across all stages.
Employee Referral Program
A few ways our companies are structuring referral programs:
Step up approach paid after 90 days of successful employment (i.e. first hire $1,000 bonus, second hire $1,500 bonus, third hire $2,000 bonus etc.)
Same incentive across the board (i.e. $5,000 for every hire etc.)
Tiered incentives (i.e. $2,000 for general roles and $4,000 for hard to fill roles)
Outside of monetary incentives there are also ways to reward such as 1) charitable organizations that employees can select donations towards, 2) fun unique swag items, and 3) quality time (i.e. coffee with a founder or an investor).
$3,000 is the average cost per referral across all stages. Note that executives are generally exempt from referral bonuses.