Preboarding – How to Engage and Retain Your Top Candidate

<span id="hs_cos_wrapper_name" class="hs_cos_wrapper hs_cos_wrapper_meta_field hs_cos_wrapper_type_text" style="" data-hs-cos-general-type="meta_field" data-hs-cos-type="text" >Preboarding – How to Engage and Retain Your Top Candidate</span>

Man som pratar i telefon. Bild för att illustrera preboarding Imagine this: you’ve hired a new employee and some time has passed since the contract signing. Everyone at work is aware that a new colleague will start in a few weeks, and you feel prepared – great! But, how well prepared is the new hire? Does he or she know what will happen on the first day, first week, or month? Cultivating communication and keeping in contact all the way to the first job day can be imperative not to lose top candidates along the way, and to give new hires a flying start. Let’s have a closer look at preboarding! The recruitment process is finished, the candidate has been found, the employment contract has been signed. Hooray! Presumably, the following period between signed employment contract and first workday is quiet. Or do you have an ongoing dialogue with your new candidate? It is quite common that the time between recruitment process and first workday is overlooked, and that employers put all the effort into the beginning of the work period. But, if more employers would put some of that effort into preboarding, the introduction of new employees would undoubtedly become smoother and less stressful.

What Is Preboarding?

Preboarding is the time in between a candidate accepting a job offer and their first workday. One could say that the preboarding process is part of the onboarding process: it’s the first stage of the onboarding that begins when the candidate has signed the employment contract. Preboarding means that you as a manager stay connected to your new candidate before their first day of employment, to provide them with information about the organization, tell them about what their first work period will look like, and to answer potential questions that the candidate might have. Without a doubt, preboarding is an important part of the employee journey, as it makes new hires feel both appreciated and welcome.

Why Preboarding?

After the contract is signed, your candidate is (hopefully) motivated and excited about the new job, and this is where preboarding comes into the picture. The preboarding process is a way to preserve that enthusiasm and keep building a positive experience even before the first workday. By including a well thought out preboarding process in the introduction, you will most likely get a candidate who is well informed and motivated from day one. To your employer brand this is highly valuable; an excited new hire that tells family, friends, and acquaintances how positive they experience your workplace – not so bad. A well-planned welcome can also reduce the risk of new hires quitting. For example, did you know that a structured onboarding process can increase the likelihood of employees staying for three years or more with 69 percent? It may also be good to know that if the process is successful, it can increase new hires’ productivity with as much as 50 percent, as it helps them get up to speed faster. A well-prepared candidate that has the right expectations before he/she starts needs less time to reach full productivity. Does your new employee have a long notice period from a former workplace? Or perhaps, there are other job offers coming in? Even more reasons to having a structured preboarding! Just because the contract is signed there is nothing preventing the candidate from changing his/her mind – also, you may not be the only employer competing for this candidate. A relationship building dialogue during the notice period will keep the enthusiasm and interest alive.

How to Create a Successful Preboarding Process – Five Tips

It is quite common for companies to begin with onboarding when new hires have already started working – and the border between what elements should be part of the preboarding process and what should belong to the period after they start working can be blurry. All companies operate differently and as a manager, it is smart to evaluate which parts of the onboarding process could be executed before the candidate starts. Here are five tips to get a structured onboarding:

  1. Send Out Information Different types of information apply to different companies, but undoubtedly, there is a plethora of basic information that the employee can acquire before his/her first workday. Except from an overall introduction to the company, this information can contain a job description, working hours and vacation days, organizational structure, work clothes or dress code, internal culture and practical elements like codes and addresses. For someone who is new at work, it can also be nice to have a schedule for the first work period!
  2. Collect Contact Information You can collect address and contact information beforehand to get a less stressful agenda during the candidate’s first days. For example, you can collect employee data through a web-based personnel system where you give new hires access to forms that they can fill in themselves.
  3. Check In Checking in with your future coworker is, of course, friendly and welcoming. Are there any questions or concerns that can be sorted out? How does it feel before starting the new job? Simply reaching out to check how they’re doing can reduce anxiety and build a good foundation for future communication.
  4. Prepare the Office Computer, keys, cellphone…is everything set up? A new employee has a lot to take in during the first workday, and to be able to spend time on relevant tasks when your new candidate arrives, it is a good idea to prepare as much as possible before the first workday.
  5. Invitations to Employee Events Do you have anything going on in the organization – events or employee activities, or perhaps a casual Friday lunch? As a new hire it is always nice to get an invitation! But, as a manager, you should be aware that it doesn’t suit everyone to participate in social events before they have gotten to know their coworkers. If you don’t have anything going on in the company right now, a welcome present could be a good alternative – maybe a box of chocolates or profile material such as a coffee mug or a bag.

Work Smarter with the Employee Journey

Are you working in HR or as a personnel manager? Do you want to digitalize and streamline the employee journey management? With Flex HRM Employee you get full support throughout the entire process of bringing a new hire on board – from hiring decision throughout the introduction to helping the employee get settled in. You can effortlessly tailor and modify the solution according to what the onboarding process looks like in your company, and you get a user-friendly toolbox for every stage of the employee journey. Ready to hear more about the advantages? Contact us here!

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