Companies with an active onboarding program retain 91% of their hires after the first year and have employees who are 18 times more likely to feel committed to their employers.
First impressions drive last impressions!
Working with the generation of job hoppers — the millennials — how you onboard your employees decides their future in your company. A Gallup survey states that 6 out of 10 millennials are open to new job opportunities at any given time. 21% of them have changed jobs in the last 12 months.
Millennials have become the consumers of the workplace. For leaders of a growing company, the challenge is not only to attract potential talent, but also to retain them for the long run. While the entire employee lifecycle is crucial to turn employees into brand ambassadors, employee onboarding i.e. the first 90 days sets the stage for success, or failure!
Companies that have an active onboarding program tend to retain 91% of their hires after the first year of joining.
In this article we will cover everything you need to know about onboarding employees the right way.
Table of contents
Employee onboarding is more than just a formal introduction. To be effective, the onboarding process needs to cover all technical, social, cultural, and procedural aspects of hiring a new member.
A great onboarding process ensures that the employee fits in with the company brand image, workplace culture, mission, and meets the skill requirements for the chosen role.
It also sets out the tone for future interactions that happen between the employer and the employee. When employees are boarded well from day one, it tends to create a seamless integration into the existing workforce. In the long run, it increases the employee's productivity and supports employee retention.
Before we dive deeper into the onboarding process, let us first look at the cost of poor employee onboarding on an organization.
Often the results of poor onboarding are not evident at the start of employment. The most visible result of poor onboarding is high employee churn or attrition.
In a fast-growing company, time is money and bandwidth is low. Therefore, a high voluntary attrition rate not only increases the financial cost of employee acquisition, but also ends up wasting other people’s time and effort that could be used for high value activities. A culture of attrition also leads to poor morale at the workplace.
Here’s what happens when employees are not onboarded properly —
UrbanBound found that of all the employees who did not meet their performance goals in the first year, 50% did not receive a formal onboarding. With new employees that are not started with the right tools tend to take more time to familiarize themselves with the new work environments. This could mean that a substantial time of the hiring is spent learning things that could have been tackled at the onboarding plan. Something as simple as operating a coffee machine needs to be part of any onboarding efforts. Small steps like these do show the employee that people care and make them feel comfortable.
When the hirings' expectations are not in sync with the work settings, it could lead to frustrations and lack of interest in the work assigned. The chances of such employees seeking other avenues cannot be ruled out, which could lead to workers' failures.
It has been noticed that firms that have a good onboarding process tend to have less churn of employees. Thus, the cost incurred in having an effective onboarding program would be offset by the savings accrued in reducing the hiring of new employees. In addition, studies have indicated that 20% of new hiring churn occurs during the first 45 days, and having an effective onboarding plan reduces this significantly.
Often, the reason for low confidence of the employee is feeling isolated and unsupported. A lack of understanding of the new employee’s expectations from the employer and the job (such as career development opportunities) leads to low employee engagement due to low morale. This eventually leads to employees looking for other job opportunities soon.
A high attrition rate of new employees creates a poor image of the company they are working in. Today, 84% of employees say that they may leave their jobs if they receive an offer from a company with an excellent employer reputation.
For fast growing companies, a poor employee brand image is quickly propagated across the industry, making further hiring hard to do or more expensive to achieve.
On the other hand, taking the time or care to onboard employees can lead these amazing benefits.
According to research, about 86% of employees decide whether they want to stay with the company in the long run or not in the first 6 months. An effective onboarding would mean that employees have lesser chances of leaving in the first year at work. This significantly cuts down on employee costs and leads to better productivity at the office. 69% employees are more likely to stay with an organization for 3 years, if they experience great onboarding. A great first impression definitely goes a long way!!
Companies that tend to have a good onboarding schedule tend to report up to 50% better new hire productivity at the workplace with happier and fulfilled employees most of the time. When expectations are clear, goals are set, resources are distributed well, it leads to higher productivity.
The cost incurred in new employee onboarding is often offset by a better return on investment. Most clients report having a satisfying experience while interacting with the companies having an effective onboarding program.
Naturally, happier customers equals higher revenue. When employees are happy and engaged, they go the extra mile in their roles to improve the company's profitability. This could mean increased revenue of up to 60%. There seems to be a greater focus on the new hiring than places without an onboarding process.
The top driver of a high performance team is psychological trust. Gallup research says that 75% of employees leave due to poor relationships with their bosses.
Taking the time to build a comfort zone for new hires in the workplace builds relationships beyond mechanical workplace transactions. Frequent check-ins, 1:1s, all hands in the initial days reduces initial isolation and creates a sense of belonging which further results in high employee engagement.
62% companies say that the primary objective of employee onboarding is to integrate them into the organizational culture. Because ultimately, a company culture is what drives employee performance, engagement, and overall experience.
Especially, in hyper growth companies, integrating new employees into the culture soon and well minimizes the risk of quick attrition. Thus saving time and resources on rehiring.
Now let’s look into what a standard employee onboarding process looks like in a hyper growth company.
For fast growing companies recruiting and retaining top talent is a challenge in itself. Today new employees want a customized onboarding experience to feel connected to their new place of work. With more companies opting for a remote or hybrid workplace model since the pandemic, onboarding has become more challenging.
While fast-growing companies or scaling start-ups may not be able to provide the high brand value or bigger financial rewards to the new joinees, hypergrowth companies can indeed offer them the excitement of being part of a bigger purpose that the big companies often fail to provide. Make sure to capitalize on this when onboarding a new employee.
Being a fast-growing company, your onboarding program must include the following —
Integrating a fresh joinee to the existing company culture usually takes about 3 months and introduction to resources, company handbook, and people they need to have access to for doing their job well.
The onboarding process must be clearly laid out to the employee to the best extent possible. It is essential to have a timeline — from the time a person is hired to when he is joining the organization. It is useful to break the onboarding journey into the first 30-60-90 days and set clear objectives for each period. Every employee is unique and has their own unique needs and expectations. Engage people ahead of time to customize the onboarding process for them when they join.
All it takes is a smartphone and a video clip about the people with whom the new employee will be working on setting the tone for the first few weeks at the new workspace. It really doesn't cost much and can significantly impact the employee than a series of lectures or PowerPoint presentations. If you are working remotely, using Zoom, Google Meet for video conferencing, 1:1s, or weekly all hands, or recording instructions in Loom goes a long way to eliminate the feeling of alienation. Guided 1:1s are extremely crucial to troubleshoot any problem new hires are facing and build a feedback culture.
The best place to start charting out onboarding process steps is with the employees already with an organization. By seeking out feedback on their experience and integrating the views and thoughts of the employees go towards making a good onboarding program. Also, ask for continuous feedback from the new joinee, especially during the first 90 days, to understand the pain points and solve accordingly before they snowball into bigger problems that lead to untimely resignation.
It is important for the new hiring to understand what the management expects from him more so in fast growing organizations where roles might often overlap. In return, the worker must be given an idea as to what to expect from the employer. Let them know how the performance metrics they will be measured against. The matching of expectations properly can lead to a more satisfied group of employees and a smoother employee-employer relationship.
An effective onboarding plan is often set apart by the attention to the fine details rather than the big points. For instance, most new employees would know all about the product portfolio of the new company and if an effort is made to manage the daily commute to the place of work, it would go a long way towards making their stay at the workplace comfortable and stress-free.
The onboarding process must not be a single flow of information but a closer interaction between the new employee and the management. This would set the tone for future cooperation between the two and puts just the proper perspective on each other.
Most fast moving companies today tend to have a mission and vision statement. This would be meaningless unless it is conveyed effectively to the new employees. It helps new joiners interact with the existing employees to understand how the promoters' vision is being put to actually work.
As has been laid down in the book, “The Alliance”, by Reid Hoffman, Ben Casnocha and Chris Yeh, “The importance of onboarding is significantly increased these days since the average turnover at work is less than four years and lifetime employment strategies are out of date.”
Onboarding new employees, especially in a remote set-up, is challenging. Using specialized software for this purpose often streamlines the process. However, you must remember that onboarding is about building connections with the new member, making them a part of the team, and eliminating the initial feelings of isolation. Tools can help with the systematic processes, but how you treat them is what ultimately determines the success of onboarding.
Be warm. Be kind. Be supportive.
Like what you read? Now see it in action in your team, book a free demo with our experts today!
If you are trying to design a continuous and comprehensive performance management system, you would know the importance of conducting a 360 degree feedback. However, to make this exercise most effective, you need to go beyond simply involving everyone in the process to getting the process right — most importantly asking the right feedback questions to each stakeholder. This article will focus on how to write 360 feedback questions that create maximum organizational impact.
Let us quickly start by understanding what you must include in your 360 feedback questions to make it more effective.
Without wasting any time, let’s dive into the 10 tips that can help you in writing excellent and effective 360 feedback questions.
Keep the language easy to understand and avoid using technical jargon. Make sure everyone is able to gauge the same meaning of the question and the focus is not lost in translation.
Keep adding the questions list for your next 360 degree feedback to your records throughout the year.
Since 360 feedback should focus on all aspects of an employee, if you add questions at different times, they will be more relevant
Ensure that the questions don’t have an inherent bias or don’t push or influence the respondent to answer in a specific manner. Make sure that the questions can have varied options as answers and not a singular focus because that’s what you want as a result. Furthermore, the questions should not create a bias in the mind of the reader of any kind.
Focus on one specific attribute or competency for each question. Don’t try to include everything in a single question to keep the number of 360 feedback questions low. You will end up receiving responses for only a part of the question and it will confuse the respondent too. For instance, if you want to talk about collaboration, do not couple it with factors like leadership skills or problem solving.
Before you start framing the questions, identify the key competencies that are most important for your organization as well as the role. Competencies could include communication, innovation, strategic thinking, etc.
Make sure that as a whole, all the questions cover all aspects you want to gauge the employee on from an organizational and functional role perspective. However, don’t overstuff too many competencies, keep them relevant to the employee in question. For instance, a person in sales may not need a question on technology knowledge as a part of 360 feedback questions.
In addition to being specific, be clear on what you wish to gauge or understand with every question you ask. For instance, a question on whether or not the employee pays heed to the opinion of others can help understand the level of active listening and a spirit of inclusion.
You need to have a fair balance between open ended and close ended questions.
A very long or complicated process is likely to reduce participation and defeat the purpose. Therefore, keep the count of 360 feedback questions to a maximum of 30-40 and make it very easy to participate and complete the same. Preferably, disseminate it through your existing communication/ collaboration tools.
Finally, make sure that the questions are framed in a way that is simple to evaluate. Too complex evaluations might take too much time and delay the action and execution, leading to reduced faith and impact on 360 degree feedback.
To ensure that your questions are relevant and specific, you can start with writing 360 feedback questions for different situations and contexts. Put simply, in this section, we will focus on what you should be asking and when. It will also help you in picking the right questions for the right employees, instead of bombarding everyone with the same questions.
These questions will help you understand what your team members think about the overall management at your organization and the effectiveness of specific team leadership.
These questions can help you understand the level of communication efficiency in your organization to ensure there is no gap between intention and execution.
Use these questions to identify and nurture employees that show leadership potential to build an effective succession pipeline.
These questions can help you understand how committed your employees are towards the organization, which will impact their level of engagement and quality of work.
You can leverage these questions when you wish to understand which employees are quick to think on their feet and will be able to address problems/ challenges that might come their way.
These questions can help you gauge the level of alignment between what your organization stands for and the core values/ beliefs of your employees.
Focus on these questions when you want to understand how well your employees are able to connect with their peers and other stakeholders.
These final set of questions can help you gauge how efficiently the employees are able to get work done. This points to the presence of the right skills to utilize resources in the best way possible.
To keep the entire survey with 360 degree feedback questions interesting and engaging, you can experiment with different question formats and templates. While some of your questions can have simple Yes/No answers, some can have multiple choices along with room for providing open ended answers as well. Here is an easy to follow template you can leverage.
Key competency: Strategic decision making
Top line: The employee/ subject name is able to
Open ended questions
Once you roll out the survey with your 360 feedback questions and receive the answers, you need to analyze the responses to come up with a final report and plan of action. However, any response analysis is subject to biases and other factors which might put the validity and reliability of the report into question. Fortunately, you can leverage these following practices to eliminate such instances:
Before concluding this article, we would like to discuss the top 8 questions that most managers have when it comes to 360 degree feedback, highlighting concerns they may be having.
Highlight how the performance and feedback on the performance of others is likely to have an impact on their performance too. Make them believe they can be an integral part of the growth journey for their team members.
Make the feedback anonymous to prevent sugar coating. At the same time, do not rely upon a single review as the ultimate feedback for any employee. Analyze at least 2-3 feedback responses for each employee to get the real picture.
3. How to make the process time effective?
Leverage technology platforms to roll out the surveys and collect responses. Furthermore, you can rely on the NLP sentiment analysis to gauge insights from open ended questions in addition to trend generation based on quantitative questions.
Check out how SuperBeings can help you conduct seamless 360 degree feedback. Book a free demo today
Highlight the positive impact of participation as a whole. Make it an interesting part of the employee lifecycle. Provide employees designated time within their work schedule to provide feedback. Do not make it an added burden. Additionally, keep the process simple with not a lot of questions at once.
Depending on the nature of the organization you can decide on the level of anonymity. Facilitate anonymity will help you fetch greater and more authentic responses. However, sometimes, you might struggle with context in this case. Therefore, you should adopt an approach of flexible/ partial anonymity.
Create a business case for 360 degree feedback. Illustrate how it can lead to a better employee experience, strategic learning and development, greater employee retention and other aspects which can lead to better performance and productivity.
Ensure that your questions are neutral and don’t lead to a specific sentiment or response. For instance, if you want to gauge punctuality for an employee, don’t use statements like do you think the employee is always late to work, rather focus on how would you rate the punctuality and sense of time for the employee?
Try to conduct 360 feedback on a regular basis and not wait for the end of the year to ask all the questions. Maintain a cadence to gauge responses.
As we end this discussion, it is clear that if you want to write 360 feedback questions in an effective way — you need to adopt an all encompassing approach, taking into account the different aspects of employee attributes, performance, personality and behavior.
It is, therefore, ideal to leverage platforms like SuperBeings to help you roll out, gather and analyze the responses using NLP and automation for best results. You can leverage our best practices to not only get the questions right but to also enable your managers to facilitate employee development at the end of the process.
If interested, feel free to book a demo today. No initial commitment required.
In the recent years, there has been a lot of attention that is being given to employee feedback, performance reviews and evaluation as a part of the whole performance management system.
While a major focus has been to prepare managers to give feedback in a constructive and effective manner, paying attention to employee self evaluation is equally important. Knowing what self appraisal comments to use can play a major role in helping employees to effectively reflect and evaluate their performance and convey it effectively to the rest of the team.
The purposes of employee evaluation and performance review in general have been talked about time and again. However, self appraisal takes the process of evaluation at a very personal and individual level, leading to a more pronounced understanding of an employee’s performance. Some of the top benefits of employee self assessment include:
In the section above, we have talked about the purpose or the need of self evaluation mostly from the perspective of the employee. However, self appraisal, when done correctly, has equally compelling benefits for the team as well as managers. A quick snapshot is captured below:
With self appraisal, employees become active participants in their review and appraisal process, rather than simply being passive recipients. Consequently, they feel valued, motivated and the level of engagement increases. Furthermore, with greater engagement, levels of commitment, retention and productivity go up.
When employees take a step back to reflect on their performance with self appraisal, they become more receptive to diverse ideas. Put simply, in the absence of self reflection, they will have a hard time gauging where they need to improve. Consequently, they will be defensive when a manager or the team gives them feedback on the same. However, self evaluation will help them accept the gaps and be open to learning and growing.
When employees reflect on their performance and identify the development areas, they will don a problem solving hat on to accelerate their professional journey. Through the course of time, this problem solving attribute will become a part of their skill set which will benefit the team and the manager greatly.
As a result of greater alignment due to self reflection on the strengths and areas of development, teams will see a greater sense of accountability to bridge the gaps identified. Under conventional circumstances, performance improvement might be seen as just a tick in the box by employees. However, after self appraisal, employees truly acknowledge and accept the need to bridge those gaps and take greater ownership and accountability.
Now that you have an understanding of why self appraisal matters, let’s quickly look at how to make it most effective. If you are experimenting with self evaluation for the first time, it can be an overwhelming activity for your employees. It is human nature to feel uneasy when you’re expected to evaluate your own performance. However, if you provide your employees with some comments they can use for self evaluation as a starting point, you can make the journey easier for them.
Put simply, self appraisal comments are common statements that can be customized by your employees during the self evaluation process, especially, if they find themselves at a loss of words to describe their performance
These phrases are available for both strengths and areas of development to help employees paint a realistic picture of their performance. Here are the top 100 self appraisal phrases that you can use for different performance parameters.
Use these self phrases to reflect on your clarity of communication, willingness to listen to others, etc.
These self evaluation phrases reflect how reliable or dependable you are for your team members, especially under special circumstances.
Using these self appraisal phrases can help indicate how invested or engaged you are in taking ownership of work without being asked to at times.
Similar Read: 150+ performance review phrases for managers
The following self appraisal comments are important to help review your performance on the basis of how punctual and attentive you are.
Use these self evaluation phrases when you want to highlight your strengths/ areas of improvement of working with the team, your collaboration skills, etc.
Creativity self appraisal comments can help you in reflecting on how effectively you are able to come up with novel and innovative solutions to challenges and new ideas to augment the impact and value created.
The following phrase can create a picture of your quality of work and how much attention you pay while undertaking a particular task during your self reflection process.
You can use these self appraisal comments to illustrate how well you understand what is expected out of you and how well you are able to deliver on the same.
Customer satisfaction self evaluation performance phrases help gauge how effectively you are able to address customer requests or complaints that leads to a higher Net Promoter Score, brand credibility, etc.
Finally, these self-appraisal comments can help you highlight your growth plans towards your professional development and impact on the organization.
With a broad understanding of the more than 100+ self appraisal comments that you can use as a part of your self evaluation process, let’s move to this concluding section. Here, we will focus on sharing a few templates that employees can use to articulate their performance in an effective manner.
The self evaluation phrases mentioned above can be added at the right places in these templates to give a holistic picture of one’s performance. A few things to focus on include:
In the last <performance period>, I have successfully <activity/ initiative undertaken> which led to <tangible impact (metrics)> for the organization.
My focus was on <a detailed view of everything that was done> which resulted in <accomplishments>.
Overall, I believe that I have been able to create an impact by achieving <top 3 achievements> and seek to amplify the same in the future.
I believe that the last <performance period> has been full of learning and development for me.
While I was able to <quick snapshot of achievements>, I acknowledge that I need to pay attention to <areas of improvement>.
I believe that this focus will help me <intended outcome for improvement>.
Towards this, I will ensure that I consistently work towards <improvement plan (courses, behavioral changes)> to achieve <SMART goal>.
That said, self appraisal is an extremely crucial step of performance review. As a manager you must encourage your team members to provide honest reflection on their performance without being afraid of any negative consequences. Apart from providing the self appraisal comments mentioned above, you can also use assessment tools to make self appraisal a common practice within the organization.
Holistic performance reviews are integral for any organization that seeks to create a high performance culture. However, the nature of performance appraisals has undergone significant transformation with a focus on 360 feedback and review.
One of the key pillars for the same is employee self assessment and self appraisal. Through the course of this article, we will share with you why self assessment is important and how you, as a manager, can help your employees get it right to facilitate maximum impact.
As the name suggests, employee self assessment or self reflection is the practice or process where employees reflect on and assess their performance over a period of time to identify accomplishments, development areas and other performance aspects
The aim of self assessment is to get the employees’ view of their performance and add the information and data to manager and peer feedback. This can enable organizations to get a holistic understanding of the employee performance and gauge the overall contribution, some of which might be invisible from a macro view. Here are a few reasons why employee self assessment as a tool for performance review makes sense for growing organization:
With the rise of continuous performance management and regular review and appraisal, your self assessment process should follow a similar approach.
Instead of pushing employees to assess and reflect on their performance at the end of the year, you should encourage them to conduct regular self assessment
On one hand, regular and continuous performance linked self appraisal by employees will ensure that no part of their performance goes unnoticed. On the other hand, it will constantly give them a chance to reflect on their performance and improve on the development areas on the go, instead of waiting for the year end. Invariably, they will embark on the path of development and improvement at an accelerated pace.
Here, if you leverage employee pulse surveys which are short and frequent in nature, you can ensure consistent and continuous self reflection from employees. With as frequent as one question a day, you can encourage your employees to build a culture of performance-oriented self assessment.
With self assessment and reflection being a fairly new practice to performance management, many organizations and employees struggle with getting it right.
While some believe that employees might see it as a chance to explain their bad performance, others believe that it might end up biasing the manager’s perspective.
However, when done right, employee self assessment can be an extremely powerful tool to facilitate a high performance culture. Here are a few tips to get your employees conduct performance self assessment the right way:
Encourage your employees to be open and honest. Employees must not see self assessment as a place for self aggrandizing in the hope of a better rating, rather an honest assessment of one’s performance.
For self evaluation to be effective, your employees need to reflect on their performance without the worry of being penalized for identifying areas of development and improvement
It is important to not see self assessment as the sole foundation for promotions and appraisals, but rather as a journey towards growth.
Next, persuade your employees to reflect on their OKR performance. The idea is not only to assess what has been achieved with OKR grading. It should also include reflections from OKRs about the possible enablers and blockers to further refine them for the next performance period. The employee must be guided to reflect on what helped achieve the OKRs and what other support is required as well as what he or she would personally like to work towards.
Download: Free OKR grading template
Third, when self assessing for performance review, employees must incorporate feedback from their conversations with managers and peers. If your organization has a culture of regular 1:1s, this will be very easy for your workforce. The idea here is to motivate your employees to reflect on what feedback they have been able to gauge and whether or not according to them their performance is a reflection of the same. 360 degree feedback can also be a helpful tool for employees to understand all aspects of their performance.
Factors like what did the manager praise about their performance or what did a coworker thank them for are very important for self assessment.
Finally, as a part of performance review self assessment, employees need to reflect on the challenges and opportunities, both internal and external. Internally, they need to assess their attributes, skill sets and aspirations and align them with the expectations to gauge their level of performance. Similarly, external factors like resources, team support and their impact on performance needs to be documented.
When you share these above mentioned tips with your team members, they are bound to ask questions about the best practices for writing or filling up self assessment surveys in the most effective way. We have you covered for that as well. Here are a few quick tips to help your employees write effective self assessment:
If you look at these best practices closely, you will realize that the key to writing effective self assessment also lies in the questions that you ask.
Simply asking an open ended question like reflecting on your performance will seldom yield any substantial responses, mainly because your team members will struggle with starting their answers
Therefore, we have compiled a list of questions and potential answer prompts/ templates to help you make self assessment a part of your performance review process effectively.
Ensuring impact with self assessment is not only dependent on your team members. There are several ways in which managers of an organization can help build a culture of effective self evaluation.
Create an open culture where employee self reflection does not become the sole tool to penalize or promote employees, see it as an extended glimpse of performance
As we come to an end, it is clear that employee self assessments are an integral part of performance reviews and if conducted in the right manner have the potential to drive a high performing culture. However, we understand that administering and facilitating participation for self assessment can be daunting, especially for a growing organization.
Fortunately, custom pulse surveys by SuperBeings with automated sending and reminders, along with NLP based sentiment analysis can take care of the same for you. If interested, book a free demo today to learn more.