Remote work is quickly becoming the norm for small to large enterprises. As the world of work changes, human resource managers and company decision-makers now have to shift most of their processes online. One of those processes is a company’s employee onboarding process.
The best way to adapt to the new reality of virtual work is to use digital tools in a company’s processes. For onboarding systems, learning management systems or an LMS can provide a lot of support to a recruitment department. In 2019, the mobile e-learning market had a global value of $27.32 billion. This uptrend only proves that we are only seeing the beginning stages of this massive shift towards virtual learning processes.
Using an e-learning system in the onboarding process involves putting all training and orientation materials into one central platform that remote employees can access anytime and anywhere. Think of having your own website portal where people can log in to read, listen to, or watch explainer materials to better understand the company as a whole. That’s what using a learning management system for onboarding looks like.
Why Use E-learning for Onboarding
e-Learning transforms today’s education. If you want to start a new career, for instance, you can easily take up an online degree program. For instance, there is a high demand for professionals with an online software engineering degree with more organizations looking for skilled software developers and engineers in today’s tech-driven world.
Using a virtual onboarding process built on a learning management system builds a strong case because of the many advantages it brings to a company. So what kind of benefits do e-learning platforms provide to a company? Here are a few of the many.
Higher employee engagement
Companies that miss out on onboarding processes tend to have lower employee engagement and higher turnover rates. Studies indicated that new employees who went through a structured onboarding program were 58% more likely to be with the organization after three years.
So by having an e-learning system in place, businesses are guaranteed a foolproof system that HR departments can simply add new recruits into, ensuring that everyone gets onboard.
More productive HR departments
Onboarding employees can be extremely time-consuming, taking up several hours of an HR manager’s or professional’s time. So by implementing an e-learning process that new recruits can enter into on-demand, HR departments can save countless hours, becoming more productive in the process.
Easier to revisit
Chances are that new employees won’t remember everything on the first go when going through an onboarding process. This can cause confusion in the first couple of months and sometimes merit a revisit. When a ready e-learning system is put in place to reorient staff, it becomes easier for employees to revisit onboarding processes anytime they would like to do so.
How To Implement an E-learning-based Onboarding System
We’ve established that one of the best tips for onboarding remote employees is to use an LMS system to automate the onboarding process. But how does one set up an LMS for company onboarding? Here’s a step-by-step guide.
Select a learning management system to use
The first step to the whole process is selecting what LMS platform your company will use for company onboarding. When using an LMS platform, different providers all offer different experiences. Choose the system that caters mostly to the needs of your company’s context. Here are some guiding questions to help HR departments when selecting the best LMS for onboarding.
- What formats of content will you be using? (video, written, audio, graphics, etc)
- How many employees will have to be onboarded at one time?
- How tech-savvy will your employees be?
- Do you have to cater to multiple languages?
- How much can your company spend on an LMS?
Communicate the company’s mission, vision, and values
When deciding what content to include in your onboarding process, one central piece that should be there is a portion that will explain the company’s mission, vision, and values.
Many times, onboarding fails because it focuses solely on onboarding staff into the technical and operational aspects of the job. Getting team members to understand a company’s missional aspects should be the first thing an organization does when welcoming new hires into the organization.
List down all the general operational processes in your company
After starting an e-learning program with the company’s mission, vision, and values, the next step would be to orient teams on operational processes in your company. Some of the important aspects you should discuss in the onboarding process are the following.
- The company’s organizational structure
- Important meetings and company events that the employee should be a part of
- Day-to-day employee tasks to help improve team collaboration
- The new hire’s job roles
- Key performance metrics for the job role
- All incentives and benefits that come with the job
- Company growth plans for employees
Of course, this list is not exhaustive and you might need to add a few more sections into the onboarding process. Keep your format progressive and allow for a few months or so to continually populate this portion of the process. The operational systems might change with time too so keep revisiting as necessary.
Provide a flow and checklist for new hires
It’s important to choose an LMS platform that provides some sort of progress report so that HR departments and the new hires themselves will know how far they are into the onboarding process. Provide checklists so that they can keep tabs on their progress and ensure that they complete all requirements.
For anything that you might need from new staff, give a to-do list that they can use to make sure they’ve complied with all requirements. Include all paperwork and information needed to provide them access to company systems, software, communication channels, and so on.
Use video to communicate important points
When learning how to successfully onboard remote employees, you’ll come to realize that video content is king. Videos are more engaging and can better explain concepts, processes, and all other necessary aspects of working in a company. The better the production quality of the video, the more engaging and effective an onboarding process will be.
Most if not all learning management platforms have a provided section to add videos in. So maximize that process and turn as much of your training materials into video format. These videos will most likely be used for long periods, so you won’t have to worry about shooting too many videos.
Set a Time to Debrief and Take Questions
After company hires complete a training module for onboarding, they might have some questions for further clarification. Many employee onboarding software has community boards and channels to leave comments and questions. Sometimes, these questions might merit more clarification, so setting a conference call with remote hires can be helpful too.
These times for Q&A can also be opportunities to process staff and get their insight and input into what they think of the company’s culture and processes so they feel engaged at the onset. Give new virtual recruits ample time to complete all materials and modules before doing a debrief. In some cases where onboarding processes might take a few days, you can also have a mid-onboarding process debrief to help break down the process for better clarity.
E-learning is an Investment
Looking at how e-learning impacts companies, it’s hard to miss how efficient a company can be when implementing these processes, especially in onboarding and training systems.
One IBM study shows that the company generated over $30 back for every dollar that they invested in e-learning. Your company can experience that too if it properly implements an LMS system for your company’s onboarding experience and other aspects of team training as well.