Ongoing Onboarding: Everything You Need To Know To Foster Continuous L&D



What Does Ongoing Onboarding Do For Your Business?

You already know about the regular onboarding process; new hires get training and orientation as soon as they join a new company for the first time. But ongoing onboarding takes it up a notch. It’s more about continuously fostering Learning and Development (L&D) by offering your employees support, training, and resources to encourage them to grow and excel in their present and future roles.

But why is it so important? Well, technology is advancing faster than ever, and every industry needs to keep up. This means that professions evolve, responsibilities and roles change, and the modern workforce must always update their knowledge base and skills to stay relevant. Let’s explore ongoing onboarding more and why it’s so crucial for long-term success.

Why Choose Ongoing Onboarding?

Ongoing onboarding isn’t just about teaching new skills to meet the demands of the modern workplace. It’s also a way for companies to show they care about their employees as people, not just workers. Team members who are given continuous training feel more valued and engaged in their jobs. They’re less likely to leave for another opportunity, which is ideal for the company, and the additional L&D leads to better performance and increased productivity. After all, who doesn’t want to work for an organization that encourages them to fulfill their true potential?

Elements Of Ongoing Onboarding

Orientation

When a company decides to implement ongoing onboarding, it’s because they’re committed to never letting new hires feel lost or overwhelmed by policies, paperwork, training, and endless introductions. First, you need to give them a warm welcome. You want everyone to feel respected and valued, so make sure you show them they’re special. Then, clarify what you expect of them in terms of responsibilities and tasks. This way, you’re indicating how they can contribute to the company’s success from day one. Lastly, inform them of the training they’re going to receive. It’s also best if you personalize it according to their preferences, so communicate everything clearly.

Upskilling And Continuous Training

Your company needs to make learning a part of everyday work if you want to keep up with new technologies, evolving industries, and changing customer needs. This means not only attending formal training sessions but also informal ones like on-the-job learning and self-directed learning, where employees take online courses or seek out resources on their own. To make this happen, start by getting leadership on board. Explain why you need dedicated time for learning activities, providing resources, or even creating fun learning-related activities to make everything more engaging. That way, your workforce can stay ahead of the curve and learn new skills that will help them advance in their roles.

Mentorship Programs

Mentorship programs are like having a knowledgeable and supportive friend at work that helps employees navigate their careers. They share their wisdom, advice, and support based on their own experiences and greatly help new employees understand the organization, set goals, and build trust. Matching mentors with mentees is important for a successful partnership, often based on compatibility and shared interests. Some companies even use technology, like online personality tests, to ensure the perfect match. However, mentees also give back. They bring a fresh perspective, enthusiasm, and new skills from which their mentors can benefit.

Feedback

Feedback and evaluations can help employees on their Learning and Development journey. It’s like having little signs pointing them in the right direction towards their goals. For example, one-on-one meetings with managers are especially helpful for giving and receiving feedback in a supportive way. It’s all about your employees taking charge of their own growth and success. If you want a real-time feedback channel, you can implement tools like anonymous surveys, regular check-ins, and other platforms that allow them to share their opinions and concerns but also receive comments about their performance on the spot.

Tech Tools

Thanks to technology, ongoing onboarding resources can be made available anywhere at any time. With a few clicks on their devices, team members may quickly access any information they need. Technology ensures that learning is constantly accessible, whether people are working remotely, in the office, or on the go. With the right onboarding software, organizations can streamline certain tasks, like filling in mandatory forms, while Learning Management Systems take care of the L&D side of things.

Common Challenges

Resistance To Change

Management and employees may not feel fully onboard with ongoing onboarding. Some might worry that learning new skills means they’re not good enough or their habits will be disrupted. Others might be concerned about the extra time and work needed. Management may be reluctant due to financial worries, fearing it’s pointless, or simply ignoring the advantages. How do you get beyond this? First and foremost, you must explain why continuous onboarding is necessary. Emphasize to your workforce how taking advantage of learning opportunities can help them tackle everyday challenges and potentially advance in their career paths. Then, when talking with upper management, stress out the possibility of higher output, more creativity, and staff retention. Remember to include stakeholders in the process as well.

Resource Constraints

Hiring trainers and buying learning materials can become costly. One way to overcome this is to be creative with your resources. For example, utilizing existing employees who specialize in specific areas might be a cost-effective method of providing training and mentorship. Plus, it improves morale and promotes knowledge-sharing, which can be beneficial for your ongoing learning culture. Another way is to prioritize. Examine your budget thoroughly to identify places where you may save costs. It’s all about investing your money in what counts most: your employees and their growth. Overall, begin small with your available resources and then scale up as you see results and know where to focus.

Engagement And Motivation

Your staffers may quickly lose interest in the ongoing onboarding program as it goes on. Repeatedly going through the same courses can get boring; even if there was initial excitement, it could fade away without taking care of the content. What you can do is combine several formats, such as interactive workshops, games, or even challenges. Then, be sure to also cater to the unique preferences of your employees. This involves giving them the chance to learn about subjects related to their responsibilities, career goals, and roles. As they find learning materials relevant to what they do, they’re more likely to stay focused.

Conclusion

In today’s world, technology is constantly advancing, and companies can’t afford to stand still. So, organizations need to understand that learning doesn’t stop after the onboarding process. By making L&D a priority, companies can stay ahead of the game, adapt to changes, and create a culture of innovation. However, we shouldn’t forget about the human factor; instead, we should encourage collaboration and mentorship among peers.



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