The onboarding process, a buzzword among recruitment professionals, the process of integrating, welcoming and preparing new recruits and temporary workers into the workforce.
Ordinarily, this is a process which HR might undertake, perhaps there are forms, packages and talks in place, ready for the candidate when they walk into their new position, or perhaps there aren’t. We, however, are entertaining the notion that maybe this onboarding process has already begun before candidates even enter the workplace. Should onboarding start with the recruitment agency?
Firstly let’s clarify what we mean by onboarding; the onboarding process introduces the new recruits to the ways of the company, the company culture, beliefs, values, products and services. This is often seen as a transition phase, from interviewee to integrated member of the team.
So, why might recruitment agencies look at integrating this as part of their service? Surely once the candidate is placed you’ve completed your job successfully, right? Well, yes, but here are a few reasons for why you might consider extending your services a little further:
It’s good for the worker:
The worker has been dealing with you, the recruitment agency, you pass them over to the client, and everyone will be happy, but how much more satisfied will your candidate be if they are already a little prepared for the workplace they’re about to enter – already a little more onboard? This will build a much stronger relationship between your agency and the candidate, meaning they are more likely to trust, recommend and return to you should they need your services again.
It’s good for the client:
The client is obviously your most important relationship in this situation, so keeping them satisfied from start to finish is the best thing you can do. A strong onboarding programme has been proven to increase the likelihood that a candidate will stay in that job for longer, music to your client’s ears. Mackenzie Jones reported figures from Equifax which suggested that of those who left their jobs, more than 50% did so within the first year. So if you can have a small hand in ensuring your candidate is smoothly integrated into their new position, you’ll be providing not only excellent service at the time but lasting satisfaction too, while again building strong relationships!
Good for company culture:
If you’re a startup recruitment agency, you may only be discovering and creating your company culture, or you may be trying to redefine and sharpen the company culture of an established firm. Either way, in 2018 a company culture which can show that is has a focus on something other than just profit and growth is a positive one. While this is often an external or charitable cause, but it can just as easily be a genuine concern and extra effort shown for their customers.
Good for reputation:
By going the extra mile to satisfy the client, you’re forging a relationship with them; the client will recognise that they have experienced a slick transition with a company who have aligned with their needs and ultimately helped them to find, onboard and retain a new member of staff. They will be happy to have pre-prepared members of recruits who’re likely to stay with them for longer than a year.
What might recruitment agencies do to assist in this process? Although this can be effective across the board, it may prove particularly useful when placing Temps, who will be needed to hit the ground running and quickly become effective in their roles.
This assistance in onboarding could include: as much information on the company as possible, including company and brand values, arranging a visit to the company premises or meeting with the manager and keeping the line of communication between you and the candidate open in case there are questions or issues.
Recruitment agencies may also wish to communicate with the client around their current onboarding processes; if they are open to improvements that can be made in their own onboarding process, this may be a line of consultancy that you could look to offer going forward.