HomeEmployee ExperienceThe make-or-break phase for employee retention

The make-or-break phase for employee retention

  • 3 Min Read

Onboarding is crucial for new hires, with a 44-day window to secure their loyalty. Neglecting onboarding can cost up to 150% of an employee’s salary, making it a strategic priority for retention and engagement.

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You’re in a race against the clock. The onboarding process is where you win or lose new hires. You have just 44 days to make a lasting positive impression.

Onboarding is about building loyalty and stopping new hires from walking out the door. It’s here, in these early days, that you decide if they’ll be with you for the long haul.

The 44-day retention window

The clock is ticking. You have a surprisingly short window to convince new hires they’ve got a long-term future with you. This is critical.

During this time, 70% of new hires decide if the job matches their expectations and career goals. Research by BambooHR shows the first month is when most employees decide if the job’s a good fit. The stakes are high because first impressions are hard to change.

A significant 44% of new hires experience buyer’s remorse within the first week, wondering if they made the right choice. This is why you need a thoroughly designed onboarding program. The purpose of such an onboarding program is to engage and reassure them, making them feel like they belong – way beyond their first paycheck and team meeting.

A mix of structure and personal touches

Start before day one by sending them paperwork and key information so they don’t get bogged down with admin on their first day. Make introductions and have some fun icebreakers to create a welcoming atmosphere. Pair them with an onboarding buddy for support. Small gestures like company swag or a basket of their favorite snacks can make them feel valued.

Training on company tools and software is essential – 97% of new hires say it’s important. Designate a clear point of contact for questions and provide thorough training on your products and services. This tackles common frustrations. Plus, a structured onboarding program can significantly improve retention by 82%. Companies should take onboarding as an opportunity to create a positive experience that resonates with new hires and sets them up for success.

The high cost of neglecting onboarding

A bad onboarding process can cost you big bucks. Turnover can cost you 150% of the employee’s annual salary. But that’s not all. You also lose time and money spent on recruitment and experience a dip in productivity while the role is vacant.

Filling the gap with existing staff or temporary replacements can disrupt your business. There’s also the damage to your company reputation and employee morale to consider. Investing in a strong onboarding process is a critical business strategy to avoid these costly pitfalls and build a stable, engaged workforce.

Onboarding: a strategic priority

Onboarding needs to be more than just an HR checklist. Those first few weeks are critical for long-term retention and engagement. A well-designed onboarding program can be the difference between a thriving employee and a costly turnover statistic.

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