Virtual Onboarding

March 30, 2020

Countries around the world are in different stages of managing the current global crisis, and we are beginning to gain an understanding of how companies are responding to this sudden disruption.

For many organisations and industries hiring remains critical, as certain roles may be essential to sustaining and growing the business amidst these uncertain times.

Coles announced last week it was going to hire an additional 5000 staff to deal with the surge in demand. And the federal government has just recently announced the need for 5000 more staff for Services Australia / Centrelink to help deliver new support measures.

Today’s technology means that we are now equipped and able to continue the hiring process, by onboarding new employees virtually. Today, more than ever, we need to ensure a successful onboarding experience and HR are addressing the importance of communicating and educating leaders/managers to make sure they get it right.

Onboarding is critical to an organisation’s successful hiring process. Historically this has always been face to face, including one-on-one meetings with HR, direct managers, and members of the leadership team, as well as group meetings with various teams in the organisation.

However, with the current state of affairs around the globe, we must adapt to new ways of working and ensure that onboarding of new employees is just as successful virtually as it would be face to face.

Here are some thoughts around successful virtual onboarding:

Get the paperwork sorted early. Ensure that all paperwork has been sent prior to the employee starting (if possible)

Streamline processes and information where possible and be realistic. One option would be to set milestones. E.g. Online tools, scheduling platforms

Use videoconferencing for meetings ensuring as much as possible that all meetings are focussed, engaging and productive

Remember, communication, is as ever, key to successful onboarding

Educate and teach leaders and managers on the importance of onboarding (Studies have found that up to 20% of all new hires resign within the first 45 days of their role)

Have virtual one-to-one meetings with their staff. Employees react very positively to one-to-one’s and this should be more prevalent whilst the workforce is working remotely

Use digital tools to ensure the community and culture of the workplace is prevalent. When employees are physically distanced from their team members, it can be easy to isolate and disengage with others. This is especially true for newly hired employees who haven’t had the chance to experience the company’s culture. Digital tools and social networks carry tremendous power in their abilities to bring communities of remote employees together.

Engagement, communication and community altogether is what drives a strong and successful workplace. Digital has been critical to a successful onboarding experience, and this is heightened even more so now.

Virtual Onboarding is a great opportunity to modernise your recruitment processes, and to help bring about better frameworks for the future.


If you would like assistance in how your next hire can utilised the expertise of virtual recruiting and virtual onboarding, please contact Charlotte Grimmett for further details.