If your company is growing, you’re going to need to hire to fill different positions more often.  And hiring means training, so they can start their job position as quickly as possible. Therefore, onboarding training is key. Its goal is to ensure that you provide new hires with the essential knowledge they need to be productive from day one.

What topics to include in your onboarding training course?

We’re talking about essential knowledge. Forget about telling them everything; you’ll have time later. One of the biggest mistakes companies make is doing overly extensive, content-laden onboarding that is not necessary for the first day or even the first week.

The result couldn’t be worse: the new employee is saturated with unhelpful information that they will forget in the coming days to accommodate what they really need to know. And their mind will not stop circling around this thought: if the first day is so exhausting, how are the others going to be? Do you really want this for your new employees?

To know what you need to teach on the first day, you first need to have the big picture. What does this person need to know in order to do their job well? Typically, these learning topics can be categorized into different topics, from the most general to the most specific:

  • Corporate culture: company mission and values, corporate social responsibility, employee code of ethics, employee benefits…
  • Regulations: topics such as risk prevention and data protection.
  • Procedures and tasks: what I should do based on my job description and how I should do it.
  • Practical aspects: Where is the bathroom? Who are the coworkers in my area? Who do I talk to if I need anything? What time do we have lunch? What are the customs?
  • Cross-cutting skills: such as communication, negotiation, teamwork, soft skills.

Present the training in phases to make it easiest

Within this big picture knowledge map for every employee, there are things that are more urgent than others, right? For example, cross-cutting skills can wait until the first month (or semester) because they are part of the employee’s development, while regulations are mandatory as of a specific date, but there are also practical skills and tasks that they must know from day one, because it helps relieve anxiety and uncertainty if the employee knows from the start what their work framework and environment are.

That’s why it’s a good idea for you to develop a phased onboarding itinerary, covering the first day, the first week, the first month and, if possible, the first year of incorporation. This way, you present the content in doses and when it’s needed the most.

Start doing this even before the first day

The time between hiring and onboarding is precious for introducing the employee to your company. Thanks to online training, you can present the content in doses during this time, so that the employee may, for example, start internalizing the corporate culture and learning about the more practical aspects. This way, their first day will be much easier and more productive.

Plan the content to save time

There are aspects of the work that are traditionally explained face-to-face, such as introducing team members, the company’s organizational chart, or procedures. E-learning makes it easier and cheaper to produce fast and visual content related to these topics, saving you time and the cost of having people dedicated to training new employees.

Make it easy and fun

With training strategies like gamification and microlearning, you can turn boring training sessions into fun, motivating learning opportunities. And encourage, you know, that trendy word: engagement. Or employee branding. It all comes down to creating the best experience for your new employee, to making them feel truly happy to work for your company from day one.

You know, creating a memorable first impression. 

These are just a few guidelines to make your onboarding training…even better. Don’t forget to share your onboarding plan with your organization’s stakeholders to make sure you’re not overlooking anything, and ask new employees for feedback to improve it. How did you feel on your first day at the end of the day? When you’re satisfied with their answer, you’ll be able to say that you’ve achieved the perfect onboarding.