Successful employee onboarding: The science, benefits and tricks

Successful employee onboarding: The science, benefits and tricks

Inductions for new starters can cover organization structure, HR procedures, health and safety, equipment overviews, job requirements, training and development programmes, meetings with colleagues and more. New starters can’t be expected to remember all of that in one go, though – our brains simply aren’t geared up for it. But, it’s important. Successful employee onboarding significantly improves employee morale, performance and retention, all of which have a positive effect on your organization’s bottom line.

Despite that, organization onboarding processes typically take a traditional, classroom-based approach to learning, with information given to new starters in big chunks. This is down to time and cost pressures, of course, but it’s counterintuitive because it costs more time and money in the long run through a lack of effectiveness and efficiency. But how can we make sure the onboarding we deliver is effective? And what makes it effective?


For employee onboarding to be successful, new starters need to both take in and retain a large amount of information. We’ve known as far back as 1956 that we learn lots of info better when we break it up into small chunks. American psychologist George A. Miller termed this approach “chunking” and it’s the basis for what we today call “Microlearning”. Even further back in 1885, meanwhile, German psychologist Hermann Ebbinghaus had hypothesized that we forget up to half of what we learn within a matter of days and continue to forget information over time, albeit at a decreasing rate. The “Ebbinghaus Forgetting” Curve also suggested that the rate of forgetting is reduced each time newly learned information was reviewed, implying that knowledge retention can be improved with repeated exposure to information. This last insight underpins the modern-day learning technique Spaced Repetition.



Microlearning breaks topics down into small pieces. It aids the learning process because it suits the brain’s ability to learn short, easily consumable segments, rather than overwhelming it with large volumes of new information in one go. For onboarding, microlearning could be delivered to a new starter’s work computer at their desk, or via a mobile app.


Personalized Spaced Repetition

Taking Microlearning a step further, learners can be tested on a topic, with the information they’ve failed to retain or recall shown to them again for reinforcement and information they have retained not shown again, or shown at rarer intervals. This is known as Spaced Repetition. By adapting it to a user’s needs, it becomes Personalized Spaced Repetition. Testing can be web or app-based, while prompts can be sent via email or as push notifications.



There are a number of employee onboarding benefits to hosting learning materials and activities online. To begin with, new starters can access them from anywhere at any time, meaning learning is made more convenient and more effective. It also means they can revisit materials or activities to refresh their knowledge as required. Elsewhere, online platforms typically make it easy to track learner performance, meaning areas of weakness can be identified and addressed.


There are lots of benefits to ensuring the best possible employee onboarding process and they’re not just limited to benefits for the employer. Here are some of the biggest benefits for employers, employees, and customers.


Benefits For employers

  • Acceleration: Employees are brought up to speed more quickly, adding value sooner.
  • Productivity: Workforce performance is improved, meaning productivity increases.
  • Retention: Employees are happier and more engaged, making them less likely to leave.

For employees

  • Confidence: Employees have more belief in their abilities, are more comfortable in their roles and are happier.
  • Performance: Employees are better equipped to deliver their roles and do so to a higher level.
  • Belonging: Employees feel more engaged and more a part of the organization.

For customers

  • Quality: Customers receive a better quality of product or service, improving company reputation.
  • Responsiveness: Employees are able to respond to customer queries more quickly and with better answers.
  • Communication: Employees can speak with customers more comfortably and more authoritatively


Start before they start

Don’t wait until a new employee’s first day to begin the onboarding process. When you invite candidates to interviews, you should give them information about the company and the role. Not only does this begin getting them up to speed, it builds enthusiasm and makes a strong first impression.


Involve everyone

Although a new starter will only be working in one role on one team, they are still a part of the organization as a whole and they need to feel like that is the case. Introducing them to different employees and teams is crucial for this. Other teams should also provide overviews of how they will work with new starters and the working processes involved. More broadly, it’s important to give starters a sense of the company’s culture, customers and place in the industry.


Keep it continuous

Delivering onboarding as a one-off event rather than an ongoing process not only makes it harder for new starters to remember everything they are told but puts them under more pressure to do so. By making it an ongoing or “revisitable” process, employees can continually refresh any areas of knowledge weakness that they think need addressing. What’s more, a greater sense of engagement and belonging is developed.


Enhancing your onboarding initiatives with Wranx is a sure fire way of increasing productivity. Your new starters will quickly and confidently feel equipped to start working independently which will add value to your organization.


The benefits of onboarding your new starters with Wranx are:

– Quick and effective onboarding on products, policies, procedures and services

– Improved productivity

– Increased staff retention

– Enhanced confidence

– Increased performance

– Increased sense of belonging


To find out more about how Wranx can enhance your onboarding program click here.

How to Effectively Onboard New Staff: Your Guide to Success

How to Effectively Onboard New Staff: Your Guide to Success

Welcoming new staff members to your team is an exciting opportunity for growth and development. However, the onboarding process can make or break their initial experience with your organization. Effective onboarding is essential for setting the stage for long-term success, engagement, and productivity. In this blog post, we will explore the key steps and strategies you need to undertake to effectively onboard new staff smoothly, ensuring a smooth and impactful onboarding experience for your new hires.


1. Create a Structured Plan to Onboard New Staff

A structured onboarding plan is the foundation of a successful onboarding process. Start by defining clear objectives and goals for the onboarding period. Break down the plan into manageable steps, considering both company-wide essentials and department-specific requirements. This plan will serve as a roadmap, ensuring consistency and providing a sense of direction for both the new hires and the onboarding team.


Organizations with structured onboarding saw a 60% year-over-year improvement in revenue


2. Begin to Onboard New Staff Before Day One

The onboarding process should start well before the new employee’s first day. Send a welcome email or package that includes relevant information, such as an employee handbook, company policies, and any pre-reading materials. Introduce them to their team members through a welcome email or video call, fostering a sense of belonging and connection even before they step foot in the office.


3. Provide a Comprehensive Orientation

A well-rounded orientation is essential to familiarize new employees with the company’s mission, values, culture, and structure. Conduct a comprehensive orientation session that covers everything from the company’s history to its current projects and future goals. Include presentations from key executives and department heads to provide a holistic understanding of the organization.


4. Tailor Onboarding Training to Individual Needs

Recognize that each new hire has unique skill sets, experiences, and learning styles. Tailor the training program to address their specific needs and ensure they receive the necessary knowledge and skills to excel in their role. Offer a blend of formal training sessions, job shadowing opportunities, and hands-on assignments to enhance their learning experience.


5. Set Clear Expectations and Goals

To facilitate growth and performance, it is vital to establish clear expectations and goals for new hires. Clearly communicate the key responsibilities, performance metrics, and desired outcomes for their role. Regularly check in with them to ensure they understand their objectives and provide feedback on their progress.


60% Of Businesses Don’t Set Any Goals or Milestones for New Hires

Urban Bound


6. Foster Connections to Onboard New Staff

Encourage new employees to build relationships within the organization by providing networking opportunities. Organize team-building activities, lunches, or virtual meet-ups to facilitate interaction between new hires and their colleagues. This helps create a supportive and collaborative work environment, boosting morale and engagement.


7. Develop an Ongoing Support System

Onboarding does not end after the first few weeks. Implement an ongoing support system to ensure long-term success and integration into the organizational culture. Schedule regular check-ins with new hires to address any concerns or questions they may have. Provide opportunities for professional development and growth to demonstrate your commitment to their career progression.


9. Seek Feedback and Continuously Improve

To enhance your onboarding process, seek feedback from new hires about their experience. Conduct surveys or one-on-one interviews to gather insights into what worked well and areas for improvement. Actively listen to their feedback and make adjustments to the onboarding program accordingly. Continuous improvement is key to refining and optimizing your processes to onboard new staff over time.


10. Celebrate Milestones and Achievements

Acknowledge and celebrate key milestones and achievements reached by new hires during their onboarding journey. This can include recognizing the successful completion of training modules, hitting performance targets, or notable contributions to team projects. Celebration not only boosts morale but also reinforces a positive company culture that values and rewards hard work and dedication.


Great Employee Onboarding Can Improve Employee Retention by 82%

Brandon Hall Group


A well-executed onboarding process is an investment in the success of your new staff members and the overall growth of your organization. By creating a structured plan, providing comprehensive training, fostering connections, and offering ongoing support, you can ensure that your new hires feel welcome, engaged, and set up for long-term success. Remember, effective onboarding is a continuous process that requires regular evaluation and improvement to meet the evolving needs of your team and organization.


Wranx can provide an invaluable tool for training managers when onboarding new starters. The platform can provide a wealth of information in the form of interactive learning materials, quizzes and resources to help trainees understand key concepts quickly and easily. With Wranx’s analytics tools, managers can monitor the progress of each individual learner, giving them valuable feedback on what areas need additional attention or support. Wranx also allows managers to track the effectiveness of their onboarding program, so they can adjust it as needed and ensure that all new starters have a successful start to their new job. Ultimately, Wranx’s features help training managers create an engaging and informative onboarding process that helps new starters feel welcome and able to hit the ground running from day one.