8 Biggest Onboarding Challenges In 2023 & How To Overcome Them

Onboarding new hires is a central task in human resources management. While it can be challenging, creating a streamlined employee onboarding process is critical to the success of new hires and the organization as a whole.

The employee onboarding process is the systematic and targeted conversion of high-potential candidates to high-performing employees.

Though companies worldwide are following a number of onboarding trends like including remote work policies, vacation policies, making employee/ candidate experience a priority, but working on providing a meaningful onboarding experience can often be intimidating.

A current Gallup poll shows that only 12% of employees consider their organization to have a great onboarding process.

In this article we have provided a list of common challenges in onboarding process you might face and how you can overcome those challenges.

8 biggest challenges in onboarding process that organizations may face

Lack of clear communication and expectations

When expectations are not met, chaos and misunderstanding can arise. But if employees are not aware of what is expected of them it is a bigger problem. Expectations or communication goes both ways. 

Employees must know what is expected of them and management must understand what employees expect from the organization. If not, it can lead to confusion and frustration for new employees.

To fill up the communication gap, management must continuously update their job postings with the expected role and responsibilities that accurately portray the job new hires are applying for. As well as, employers should have one on one communication with the employees on a regular basis so as to understand what your employees are looking for from the organization.

Limited engagement and support from managers and colleagues 

Limited engagement and support from managers and colleagues can make it difficult for new employees to feel welcomed and integrated into the organization.

Focusing on employee engagement throughout the onboarding process is paramount to employee productivity and retention.

Here are some things you can do to attract new hires and ease the onboarding burden.

  1. Share their LinkedIn profile with your new employee and suggest they connect with their new teammates.
  2. Host group activities with new hire teams or departments such as: Luncheon, happy hour event or welcome party. Introduce new hires to mentors or buddies to overcome challenges in onboarding process.

Limited or too much access to resources and tools

Starting a new job can be intimidating on its own, so when the new hires don’t have the necessary resources and tools, it can make new employees anxious such that they can’t do their job properly.

Providing necessary information to the new hires is important but when the new hires are loaded with too much information at once, that can have more negative impact than positive.

What to do: understand the role and responsibilities of the new hire, make a list of resources and tools they will require in their job, maybe employee handbook, company manuals, company calendar, job-specific documents, non- disclosure agreements, organizational chart, pension documents, health insurance documents, emergency contact form and many more.

Segregate the documents into categories based on when they will need them, right from the day they start their work, a week after when they start working independently, a month later when they get completed the trial period. This will ensure the new hires are provided with important resources but they are not piled up from day one.

To avoid a pile of onboarding paperwork, we recommend giving new hires a package of all documents on their first day or earlier, preferably in a digital, paperless format.

Lack of a structured onboarding process

Unstructured onboarding processes can lead to inconsistencies in the onboarding experience for new employees. By developing a well-structured and efficient onboarding solution, HR teams can curate processes that maximize effectiveness that benefit employees and the organization as a whole.

You can create a structured onboarding process by following a precise 30-60-90 day plan for new hires. By identifying onboarding goals for the first 30, 60 & 90 days you can create a structured onboarding process which will show effective results.

To understand more about 30-60-90 day plan read 30-60-90 day plan to boost new employee productivity

Lack of follow-up and feedback

Neglecting new hires’ feedback during and after the onboarding process causes important information to be left out. Feedback from new hires can help to identify areas they feel they struggle with or struggle to understand. This valuable information will help modify the onboarding program to make it more effective in the future.

One way to collect employee feedback and measure onboarding success is to conduct post-onboarding surveys.

Below is a list of questions to include in your onboarding survey:

  1. What part of the onboarding process did you like best?
  2. Were there any parts that were confusing or difficult to understand?
  3. Did I miss something in the process?
  4. Would you recommend changing the onboarding process?
  5. Do you understand how your role contributes to overall business goals?
  6. What are your thoughts on onboarding materials (manuals, guidelines, etc.)?
  7. Do you have a good idea of ​​what you still need to learn to do well at work?
  8. Did the onboarding process meet your expectations?

Limited opportunities for networking and socialization

Many companies still don’t understand the motto of onboarding. It is not just about providing the new hires with the necessary information they will need for their job, it is also to help them navigate the office better and know their colleagues and supervisors. Limited opportunities for networking and socialization can make it difficult for new employees to build relationships with their colleagues.

To help new hires socialize and network, many companies organize casual team meetings during the onboarding process; provide the new hires with a mentor, who will be their guide around the office.

In order to increase employees morale and engagement organize activities to provide more socializing opportunities for the new hires like 

  1. Lunch meetings, these are informal meetings so allows employees to bond
  2. Add employees to online chat groups where they can ask questions, share information, or connect by discussing non-work related topics, maybe share nearby events, establish fitness groups.
  3. Host work-related events, classes or conferences. These kinds of activities not only help employees socialize within the office but with similar people from other firms as well.

Growing remote work culture

 Especially after the recent pandemic when the remote work culture started mushrooming worldwide, companies started to face unique challenges. 

Business Insider pointed out, in some remote work environments, employees can burn out more than they would in the office.

Remote work culture can make it difficult for new employees to find guidance and support as they navigate their new role.

What to do: At Learn Infinity, we try to fill the gaps in onboarding process by following the remote work culture by joining online chat groups and the occasional physical meeting.

Other than these ways, you can also try onboarding gamification to engage your workforce working in different parts of the world.

Acting lawfully

Most candidates research companies before going for an interview or after receiving a job offer, but there’s only so much you can learn from doing research online. Especially for employees entering a new industry or working in a new state or country, there may be differences in the legality of doing business. Employee onboarding is a great way to establish what you and your new employee need to do to work legally while complying with company policies.

It is important to train newcomers as early as possible to prevent illegal activity and the penalties that come with it. During the pre-onboarding phase, provide employees with documents, videos, websites, podcasts, legal papers and other content that can help them understand what your organization stands for along with what the legal rules of the country or industry looks like.

Employee onboarding tools are great investments for your business since they do the work for you seamlessly. Along with efficient onboarding, Learn Infinity specializes in employee experience, to promote productivity at an affordable price.

If you are looking for an expert to get help with identifying what your employees actually want, call or reach out via WhatsApp on +977-9802848899 or drop a mail at learninfinityco@gmail.com.

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