Advice From L&D Experts: Enhancing Employee Experiences from Start to Finish
Wisetail | 5 min read
Great leaders know that employees are a company’s most valuable asset. They are the ones that showcase your business’s goods and services, generate revenue, and act as the face of your organization. If done correctly, they are also the loudest and most engaged supporters of your brand. For these reasons, it is important to engage them, build a community, and invest in their long-term success.
Learning and Development experts know all about these goals, as they are among the strongest advocates for helping employees feel valued and invested in their learning experiences. Here at Wisetail, we’re proud to work alongside so many knowledgeable and nurturing professionals, and we would like to take a moment to amplify their voices, and let them share their industry advice!
So, we posed three questions to L&D professionals, asking what advice they would give surrounding onboarding, inclusivity and offboarding.
How do you make new hires feel invested in their onboarding?
Wisetail is proud to be an Intertek company, and with their focus on quality products and experiences, we were thrilled to receive their feedback regarding how they handle internal onboarding, and getting people to feel invested in the process faster. Rachael Nordby, Intertek’s Senior Global Digital Innovation Manager, relayed the following advice:
“Make it exceptionally on-brand, welcoming, and relevant! If it’s daunting and feels perfunctory upfront, people will disengage. Instead, make sure onboarding is geared towards the immediately needed skills and company must-knows. Then add ongoing training into later phases.”
As a tech company, Wisetail relies primarily on a remote workforce. We must intimately understand the value of good communication and clear instruction. Cristy Pedersen, Wisetail’s Operations Manager, highlighted the importance of having a readily accessible support system:
“Our employees know there is a guided Onboarding training within our system that they can pick up anytime. This helps them stay on track, and helps them feel supported knowing they can look back at those lessons whenever they need to reference training materials.”
We always talk about inclusivity, but how do you make new hires feel welcome from day one?
Leslie Arroyo, Ben and Jerry’s Retail Communications & Systems Content Manager has worked with her team to craft a centralized space for all new hires to receive unified onboarding experiences! She is thrilled to watch the development of their site, and is hoping to instill a passion for their brand in the process. She weighed in on how they help new employees feel like a part of the team right away.
“We want all new hires to fall in love with Ben & Jerry’s, just the way the rest of us have, so their first experience is getting to know the company – its history, what our mission statement is, information about our co-founders, and lots of quirky, fun, real-life stories (how certain flavors were created, why Ben and Jerry decided to make ice cream instead of bagels, etc.) sprinkled in. The intent of this approach is so all new hires feel valued from Day 1!”
Cristy weighed in on this topic as well: “Operations puts the team member’s first few weeks of onboarding directly on to their work calendars. Their initial meeting on their first day is with a member of the Operations team. Operations gets to know them, tells them about Wisetail’s benefits and wellness programs, explains our onboarding process and expectations, and answers their preliminary questions. From this point, onboarding includes meetings with department managers to learn about each department, participating in team meetings to get to know CX and Operations, and detailed online lessons provided by our Apex system.
We also let our current team know that a new employee is arriving by sending a Welcome Blast with their picture attached in our Apex system. This way, team members have time to send personalized welcome messages to their new coworker!”
Rachael had thoughts on this topic too: “100% make sure you have human interaction built in. This goes for remote and in-office employees. And, remember that early on, not everyone will be proactive about introducing themselves, so you probably want to consider curated meets, eg. ‘The product team are all early birds and love coffee. Schedule a morning intro with someone from Product within week 1’.”
What is offboarding, and why should people care about including it in their processes?
Rachael elaborated on the oft forgotten part of the employee journey: “Offboarding is the transition out. It’s important because it helps reduce the risk of burnt bridges with former employees. The business can learn a lot from exit interviews and exit checklists can make sure loose ends are tied up – no one wants to be chasing someone who’s moved on for passwords, hardware, etc!”
Cristy concurred with Rachael’s sentiment: “We take offboarding very seriously. It’s a great opportunity to learn what we are doing well, and how we can improve. We conduct a detailed exit interview to gain as much knowledge as possible about the person’s time at Wisetail. We also follow up with the person the last day to ensure that their last feeling at Wisetail is a supported one.
If someone leaves for an opportunity to advance, we want them to know they’re supported and we want to see them succeed. If one day we have a role that they can come back to, we want them to know that we would be happy to have them!”
Listening to L&D expert advice can help you make impactful decisions for your business while abbreviating the period of trial and error. Incorporating recommended onboarding, inclusivity and offboarding practices will allow you to improve the overall employee experience, and ultimately help you develop the available resources within your organization.