How the benefits of paperless onboarding go beyond speed

Why do HR teams switch to paperless ways of handling their new hires?

The most obvious answer is…speed. It’s a much faster and more efficient way to bring employees into an organisation.  Any yet, despite these benefits, more than two-thirds (68 percent) of UK hiring teams still use manual processes.

This means that onboarding relies on physical copies of offer letters, contracts, guides and welcome packages being posted out to each new hire. It creates a slow, error-prone and inefficient process.

Webonboarding’s cloud-based approach removes manual paperwork tasks and the need to post out documents to incoming employees. It means that a process that typically takes weeks to complete can now be handled in a matter of days.

But the value that’s added to an organisation by moving to paperless onboarding goes far beyond this improved efficiency. Here are just some of the business benefits:

Management visibility

A major problem with the traditional paper-based approach to onboarding is how hard it is to keep track of. Gathering any kind of information, no matter how basic, becomes a time consuming and error prone task.

A cloud-based system automatically tracks and collates onboarding information, with real-time data making it instantly accessible to HR. Performance can be tracked and problems identified early.

Webonboarding features an integrated reporting tool that allows detailed information to be collated in minutes. It provides a level of management visibility that can’t be matched by a paper-based operation.

User experience

High employment levels have created a candidate driven market in which successful applicants often have multiple employment options. If they experience frustrations during onboarding, they’re liable to switch to alternative offers.

A cloud-based approach, with everything handled via an online portal, provides an improved user experience which minimises this risk. It removes the hassle of completing paper documents and relying on the vagaries of the postal system.

It allows for a much more engaging and interactive onboarding process with HR able to share any kind of information – from a company welcome video to web links to local resources for new hires who are relocating.

Compliance control

It’s not enough for onboarding to be fast and efficient – it also has to work towards being compliant. This has become a particular issue since the introduction of GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) in 2018.

The EU legislation demands that employers maintain effective control of any employee details that are collected or stored. This is difficult to achieve when the information is held on paper documents and spread across an organisation.

The centralised control of a cloud-based system provides a much more effective way to maintain a compliant onboarding process. With potential fines of up to €20 million, GDPR is an issue no organisation should ignore.

Reducing human errors

When you have a paper-based onboarding process, information needs to be manually input and transferred from documents and filled forms. It’s during this process that human errors are inevitably made.

Webonboarding eliminates this risk by removing physical paperwork. Everything is handled in a digital format, allowing information to be seamlessly shared across different systems and software.

Paperless savings

It’s not just a faster onboarding process that reduces costs, it’s also removing all of the expenses associated with paperwork. This includes paper, printers, photocopiers, ink cartridges, postage, stationary and all the office space and furniture required to store physical documents.

All of those costs are removed with a cloud-based system. It provides a more cost effective, scalable way of working which has the added advantage of being environmentally friendly.


There’s more to paperless onboarding than pure speed. It provides a fundamentally better way to handle new hires with the benefits delivered throughout a HR operation.

While the efficiency benefits alone are enough to justify the switch to a cloud-based system, it’s just one of the practical business benefits that’s motivating more organisations to switch away from the traditional paper-based onboarding approach.

Find out more about how webonboarding software can support your onboarding processes here

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