Impressive Onboarding Strategies to Improve Employee Retention

Four million employees have quit their jobs every month for over a year. The Great Resignation is not just a myth or buzzword, it is the stark reality of employment today. Due to the effects of the pandemic, hiring has become increasingly more difficult. That means retaining employees is more critical than ever.  

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Recruiting for a new role takes considerable time and resources. However, replacing an employee is even more costly. According to the Society for Human Resource Management, replacing them takes 50%-75% of the person's annual salary. Implementing an effective strategy for onboarding employees is one way to stem the tide, increase retention, and build a stable, productive, and desirable company culture.  

Onboarding Strategies for Increased Retention 

Effective onboarding is essential for new employees to acclimate to their new roles and integrate into the company culture. It can make all the difference between an engaged and productive employee and one that already has an eye out for the next opportunity. The key to improved retention starts with observing some best practices for onboarding employees.   


Walking cold into any new situation almost always comes with some apprehension. Ease the transition for your new hires by starting the onboarding process before their first day. Send them a welcome kit, introduce them to the team, and provide them with all the necessary information, such as company policies, benefits, and procedures.  

Have Clear Goals and Expectations 

One of the top reasons stated by employees leaving new jobs is that the role was not what they expected. Businesses are responsible for ensuring each employee is given a clear set of responsibilities, goals, and expectations. The new hire should understand what their role is from the outset. Ensure you outline their job duties, performance metrics, and career progression so that they can see themselves in their current position and beyond.  

A Buddy or Mentor System 

Everything is easier when you have a friendly face to help guide you and answer questions. Peer support is important when onboarding new hires. Assigning a buddy or mentor to the new employee helps ease them into the company culture and gives them more personalized support to expedite their transition.  

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Try Gamification 

What sounds more attractive: attempting to digest seemingly endless facts and details about a new company and role on your own or participating in a fun, interactive competition? Gamification helps participants retain up to three times more recent information and increase motivation and engagement. It works by stimulating dopamine production, which helps with learning and memory. Implement this strategy using quizzes, scavenger hunts, or other interactive activities.  

Personalize Training 

Learning is not one size fits all. Everyone has a different learning style, pace, and time of day, so they are more receptive. Some may prefer independent study, while others need interaction with a coach or peers. You must unlock your employee's potential by providing personalized training based on the employee's learning preferences and job requirements, such as a combination of online courses, coaching, or shadowing.  

Provide Continuous Feedback 

Frequent, constructive feedback is a vital component of a healthy work environment. It helps workers feel valued and gives them actionable steps to improve their performance. Continuous feedback could be any combination of regular check-ins, performance reviews, or surveys. Also, don't underestimate the importance of casual conversations to put people at ease, increase communication, and build relationships. 


Being a newcomer to a company is like being on the outside looking in. Established routines, relationships, and social norms take time and effort. Organizational socialization (OS) is what demonstrates success, welcomes new team members, and facilitates a strong company culture. Help your new hires feel a part of the team through team building events, lunch and learns, offsites, or volunteer opportunities.  

Strong Onboarding Strategies Lead to Higher Employee Satisfaction 

For many years, companies thought onboarding was inundating the new hire with company facts and enrolling them in the benefits programs. If that is your current strategy, it's time to reconsider your approach. Today's employess want to feel part of the bigger picture. They want to know that they have a valuable role in contributing to the company's success and what that looks like. When you are ready to strengthen your company with the best talent, contact Navaquest for onboarding training. 

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