Employee Engagement Best Practices Begin Before a Vacant Position is Filled in Your Organization

Start an Effective Onboarding Process During Recruitment and from the First Moment of Contact

With a new competitive workplace where organizations are scrambling to fill niche positions, it is critical to attract and keep new hires. According to research by the Office of State Personnel in North Carolina, “employees will decide within 10 days if they intend to stay with the organization or begin looking for a different job.”

So, efforts must be made during the onboarding process to boost employee engagement before an employment offer has even been made, during the recruiting stage. Technically, it begins the first moment of contact a potential employee has with the organization.

A solid onboarding process is the foundation of employee engagement best practices. Today we are going to discuss the financial benefits of an effective onboarding process, analyzing the cost and time efficiency involved in the first part of onboarding – the hiring process.

Take a critical look at how your recruiters and hiring managers are working to “sell” the company to potential new hires and/or promotional opportunities within the organization. Streamlining this first process with new hires, inculcating from the first moment of contact the company’s culture and vision to a candidate, will spill over into the first few months of training, then, hopefully, into years as an engaged employee. As a company, keep in mind this simple maxim: How we do one thing is how we do everything.

  1. Make the vision and future opportunities of your organization clear. A recruiting website is an opportunity for organizations to attract top candidates. A website announces and reflects an organization’s values, mission, vision, goals and products. The look and feel of the website must reflect your organization’s culture.
  2. Provide in-house promotional and lateral opportunities. Begin with your employee base before looking outside. This aligns with the first tip – “future opportunities.” The possibility of ascension cannot be glossed over. This is a key component for successful onboarding and helps boost an employer’s reputation. Also, it saves an organization money to develop in-house talent because these employees are already familiar with the organization’s culture and practices.
  3. Invest in an interactive media platform that gives potential hires a sense they are not just “another hire,” but will be an invaluable part of the organization.
  4. Consider creating an automated response saying, “We have received your resume and will be in touch soon to discuss opportunities.” Then follow up on every submitted application and/or resume. This creates a sense of community. Even if the hiring process ends here, the candidate will feel valued as a person, not just another cog in the wheel.
  5. Create opportunities for prospective employees, during this first hiring stage, to have individual contact with hiring managers initially via a interactive media platform, then later (near the end of the recruitment stage) with a personal phone call (outside of office hours) to clear up potential confusion and thank the potential hire for her efforts to date.
  6. Hire for strengths. This is critical to boost engagement. Employees need to feel valued for their strengths, not for their “potential strengths.” Build on what is great about your new hires in the first place.
  7. Make the process as human as possible if possible. It is easy to rely on automated responses, but taking those extra minutes to make individualized human contact can turn potential candidates into clients later on, even if the process does not end in an employment offer.

Our next post will focus on day one through day 120 – the first four months of a new hire in a company, converting her from the newbie to a key contributor.

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