From start to finish, the hiring process can be lengthy and complex with so many steps, people, negotiations, and costs involved. When a new hire is finally set up with a start date, you may think the hiring process has finally ended… and now on to the next one. Ideally your process should continue to another essential phase…onboarding.

Why Onboarding is Important for Employee Retention

Why should you be concerned about a solid onboarding process?

This is where you set the tone, positive or negative, for a new hire’s career with your organization. All of the time, energy, and costs that were expended during the hiring process are at risk if your company doesn’t have a proper onboarding process—especially when “top talent” is involved.

It doesn’t make business sense that a company would go through the expense to hire someone, pay them a salary, and then lose them because they didn’t start the relationship off on the right foot.

If a new hire doesn’t stay with your organization because his early impressions were less than stellar, your investment is gone—not to mention you now have to start all over again. The more advanced the position and its relative responsibilities and salary, the higher the cost in time, productivity, and revenue. Some experts say that it can cost an organization as much as up to three times a new hire’s salary for the first year if he or she resigns.

Retention statistics show that almost 50 percent of new hires resign from their jobs within the first year and experts within the talent management field believe that there is a direct correlation between poor new hire retention rates and weak or non-existent onboarding processes.

If this is the case, than implementing a solid onboarding process leads to improved employee retention.

Benefits and Goals of an Employee Onboarding Program

The traditional orientation and onboarding process has typically been about bringing a new hire in and focusing on the company’s identity and immersing the new hire in its culture and processes, while putting less emphasis on the new hire and what he brings to the table.

To gain long-term retention success, solid onboarding programs should instead be more about the new hire—customized to helping him or her succeed. The following are just some of the goals that should be targeted in onboarding:

- Gets the new hire familiar with the company, its culture, mission, goals, and processes

- Helps new hire establish a rapport with other colleagues, hiring managers, etc

- Makes the new hire feel comfortable in his/her role, a clearly defined picture of duties

- Learns what is expected of him/her

- Inspire the new hire to become productive faster

- Make the new hire confirm that he/she made the right decision by joining your organization; feels encouraged that he/she is in the right place

A solid onboarding program isn’t just beneficial for the hiring company in terms of making a good impression on the new hire. It is very instrumental in setting the new hire up for long-term success.

Once you’ve spent the time, effort, and money to find top talent, it only makes good business sense to continue with a solid onboarding process. It will help your new hire get acclimated and established within the company so that productivity can begin faster. Then you’ll start to see the return on your investment, both monetarily and through retention.

Author's Bio: 

Dave Dart is the Managing Partner of the Morisey-Dart Group, an executive recruitment firm that specializes in recruiting for Managed Print Services, Managed IT Services, Document Management Solutions, Health Information Management (HIM), Health Information Systems (HIS), Banking and Financial Services, and Legal industries. To learn more about how you can find top talent or your next opportunity visit: