How a focus on onboarding can benefit the recruitment sector

Increased fees and better client relations are the potential rewards of an improved onboarding process for recruitment companies.

This was the message delivered by Webonboarding’s Simon Connell during his talk at the recent Recruitment Agency Expo in London Olympia.

Employee onboarding covers all of the tasks required to make sure a successful candidate completes the process of joining an organisation.

Along with contracts and offer letters, it includes everything from welcome guides and policy docs to IT setup and first-day preparations.

Traditionally, this has been handled by the client’s HR team with the recruiters’ role deemed to be done. But it’s also the time when the risks of dropouts are at their highest.

Negative onboarding experiences

The 2019 ‘Welcome Aboard’ study found that two-thirds (66%) of UK hiring teams still rely on a paper-based process and 46% of employees say they have had negative onboarding experiences.

Simon Connell said:

“Poor onboarding processes mean that candidates leave roles sooner, or worse, never even start. And that means that you lose out on fees, it affects your business’s cash flow and bottom line.

“And not only that, it affects your cash flow for years to come in the damage that your reputation receives from a candidate who leaves a role early, or from being unable to fulfil the number of candidates that your client is asking for.”

A particular challenge is the length of the onboarding process with it taking weeks for many HR teams to bring successful candidates into a company.

After the elation of accepting a job offer, they face being left in the dark for an extended period. It’s during this time that many will explore alternative employment options.

Improving candidate onboarding

It’s a problem that’s now being tackled with digital onboarding and management tools that remove the need for paper documentation to be posted or printed.

An automated system such as Webonboarding cuts processing times from weeks to days with all of the communications handled in real-time via an online portal.

Digital signing of contracts delivers a fully paperless process and a cloud-based approach makes it easy to share any kind of digital media or communications with candidates.

It’s a way of working that allows recruitment companies to start playing a bigger role in the onboarding process. Providing additional services and helping to complete the job of delivering the best workers to clients.

It allows for a more collaborative approach to employee onboarding with a smoother transition of responsibilities between recruiters and employers.

Simon Connell’s closing message was:

“If you help your clients to deliver a better process, you will not only protect your fees and reputation, you will also add more value to the customers that you serve.”

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