August 2017
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TD Magazine

Turned Off From Onboarding

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

A formal onboarding process is surprisingly missing in many companies.

While many people think of formal onboarding as a standard part of hiring new employees, that isn't the case. More than a third (36 percent) of companies that responded to a recent CareerBuilder survey lack a structured onboarding process, and many that do have one still collect data manually.

According to the survey, 41 percent of employers believe that a lack of structured onboarding has had a negative impact on their company. Top consequences include lower productivity (16 percent), higher turnover (12 percent), lower employee morale (11 percent), and missed revenue targets (6 percent).

In contrast, a well-thought-out onboarding process leads to many benefits. For example, 49 percent of survey participants with structured programs said their employees are more engaged, while 31 percent said they had lower employee turnover.


Even those companies that have a set onboarding process might be missing key information. Just under half of employers surveyed said they include an overview of processes or provide individual, ongoing training. And one-quarter of employees reported that their onboarding takes a day or less, while only one in 10 said it lasts three months or longer.

Additionally, many HR managers have not fully automated the onboarding process. One in seven doesn't capture any data for new hires electronically, while 47 percent capture some of these data electronically and 39 percent capture most or all of it that way.

This manual collection process results in more work—and more stress—for HR. Thirty-seven percent of HR managers reported heavier workloads, while 35 percent said it had increased their stress levels. Other negative consequences include missing documentation (28 percent) and delayed start dates (22 percent); 9 percent reported that some candidates ended up not taking the position because the process took too long.

About the Author

Caroline Coppel is the senior associate editor for ATD Press.

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