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Successfully Onboarding Your New IT Hire: The 4-Step Guide (2023)

Updated: May 2

Onboarding encompasses all the practices implemented by a company to facilitate the welcoming and integration of its new hires. It should not be taken lightly, as the onboarding of a new employee or IT freelancer is a pivotal step that sets the foundation for collaboration.

Not sure how to establish an effective onboarding process? You're in the right place: in this article, we provide you with all our best practices.


Why is the onboarding of your new IT recruit so important?

The stakes surrounding onboarding are numerous:

  • In the short term, a well-prepared onboarding process enables the new recruit to become operational as quickly as possible. In the case of integrating a freelancer, this becomes even more crucial, as the assignment has a limited duration and the consultant needs to be productive swiftly.

  • In the medium term, an optimal onboarding ensures a positive employee experience. A positive perception of your new recruits towards your company and their work indeed enhances their satisfaction and well-being.

  • A long terme, un onboarding réussi contribue à la fidélisation et à la rétention des talents, et participe même à faire de vos collaborateurs des ambassadeurs de votre entreprise.

On the contrary, poor onboarding can have significant repercussions for your company. It can lead to direct financial losses if a project is delayed and can generate significant negative impacts from an organizational perspective: higher turnover, team demotivation, lack of stability, and more.

In short, for all these reasons, it is essential to prepare your onboardings carefully by implementing effective processes.

The 4 Key Steps to a Successful Onboarding for Your New IT Hires

Step 1: Anticipate the Start Date

Onboarding starts well before the employee's arrival. It begins right after the contract is signed.

First and foremost, you need to handle all the administrative and logistical aspects related to the arrival of the freelancer or employee: ordering necessary equipment, assigning workspace, preparing access badges for your premises, providing a laptop and setting up their work environment, and, of course, creating access to various tools and software. Everything should be anticipated to ensure the smoothest possible first days for the new team member.

Furthermore, inform internal teams in advance of the arrival of the freelancer or employee, specifying their role and responsibilities. Ensure that those who will be collaborating with the new consultant or employee are available upon their arrival and have the necessary documentation prepared.

Also, provide the new recruit with all the necessary information for their arrival and address any doubts or concerns they might have. For instance, it's important to send an email a few days before the start date, containing practical details like arrival time, access instructions, the agenda for the first day, and more.

As a bonus: consider preparing a 'welcome kit' to give to your new recruit on their first day, complete with an orientation booklet and some company goodies!

Step 2: Organize the First Days

The first few days are crucial as they will shape the initial impression your employee forms about your company! You need to ensure they are warmly welcomed, can acclimate easily, and quickly feel comfortable in their work environment, whether the onboarding is conducted remotely or in-person.

Plan for an introduction to the company, providing information about your values and business model, and organize meetings with team members. If on-site, you can give them a tour of the company premises and arrange a welcome breakfast or lunch with the team to foster a friendly atmosphere.

The early days should also serve to provide your new team member with a comprehensive understanding of the mission's context and significance. This can be achieved through dedicated meetings and by sharing all relevant information and documents.

Step 3: Providing support the First Weeks

The primary objective of the first weeks is to establish a framework that encourages autonomy, sets clear objectives, and enables your new hire to deliver initial tangible results.

To achieve this, it's recommended to establish a 'hand-over' plan, a list of topics on which the new employee needs to build expertise and knowledge.

This list will help track the progress of onboarding and the effectiveness of the transition into the role. Ideally, this plan is defined by the manager or, in the case of replacement, by the person leaving the role.

Based on this plan, you can then schedule internal training, whether delivered online or in-person, and set up meetings with team members or other departments. Also, consider arranging regular individual or one-to-one discussions with the new hire during their first weeks to address their questions and ensure a smooth transition into the role.

Step 4: Maintain Follow-up Throughout the Trial Period

Communication is key throughout the onboarding process. Regardless of the status of your new recruit (freelancer or employee) and the nature of their role, ensure regular check-ins for at least several months.

Providing constructive feedback to your collaborator is essential to help them identify their strengths and areas for improvement. Finally, schedule a review to wrap up the onboarding process, and take this opportunity to gather their feedback on their integration and initial experiences. This will provide you with concrete insights to continually enhance your processes.

And there you have it! With these insights, you now have all the tools at your disposal to craft a comprehensive onboarding experience for your new hires, ensuring effective and enduring transitions into their roles!

P.S. You only have 7 seconds to make a good first impression!

Most of the time, we take things for granted and underestimate the value of good preparation, which can truly help us achieve our goals and overcome our professional challenges.

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