How Onboarding Can Help Foster Retention

employee onboarding

Retention, whether it’s related to employee onboarding or otherwise, is a major issue for those in the restaurant business – and for good reason.

Last year, the hospitality sector’s turnover rate topped 70%  for the fourth consecutive year. In fact, the 2018 turnover rate was the highest level its been since the Great Recession. Constantly replacing employees eats up valuable time in an organization, and it can ultimately affect quality of service. It’s expensive too —  each vacancy can cost operations anywhere from $3,000 to $18,000

Industry response has typically focused on engaging employees. Think open-door communication policies, team-building activities, and reward initiatives. Yet by just focusing on engaging existing employees, you’re missing out on a big opportunity to improve retention rates by making a stellar first impression. 

Human resource industry studies show that upwards of 20% of staff turnover happens within the first 45 days of employment. That puts the onboarding experience into central focus as a way to show new hires that your organization is a place they want to work for months and years to come.

Promote unique brand and culture from the start

Even before employees accept a position, you have a chance to promote your unique brand and work culture from how you approach job posting and the interview process. With Harri’s Career pages, you can customized a web site to showcase your company’s job postings, values, culture, and employee testimonials while potential new hires consider open positions. 

For example, if your brand’s mission includes green initiative and sustainability practices, your company page can include how employees are encouraged to volunteer and give back. If your brand prioritizes truly exceptional customer service, detail the way you will provide training to that end. 

By putting your values and methods front and center, you’ll attract like-minded candidates who are much more likely to stay in their roles for the long term.

Provide a positive employee onboarding experience

Human resource experts say that an ideal onboarding program happens over a period of 90 days. In reality, most companies devote one or two days and simply cover the bare minimum to meet legal and policy requirements. 

With a workforce management platform like Harri, you’ll be able to lean on technology to take over some of the onboarding workload from your managers and new hires. As this digitizes the process, automating some task and centralizing documents, this means that new employees will have a much more positive and thorough onboarding.

Instead of scrambling to collect paperwork and signatures, the platform can be used to upload custom, state and federal documents for employees to review and sign electronically. For example, in light of recent Fair Workweek legislation, Harri’s onboarding platform presents new employees with a Good Faith Estimate document to review and sign. Its integration with Checkr allows managers to efficiently initiate the background check process right from Harri’s hiring platform. Harris also uses E-Verify, a web-based system that allows enrolled employers to confirm the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States.

Onboard with well-executed training 

Inadequate or inconsistent training could make new hires lose confidence in your organization and may plant the seed that they will move on more quickly. With Harri, new hires make the most of intuitive, digital learning on the Harri platform

For example, in partnership with the New York City Hospitality Alliance, Harri developed a new digital anti-harassment and discrimination training platform for restaurants and nightlife establishments. It provides hospitality-relevant training modules for employees and is based on a curriculum developed that fully complies with the Stop Sexual Harassment in NYC Act.   

Include channels for feedback

Technology like Harri can take over some of the tedium of the onboarding process so that managers can have time to relate to new hires as people. With Harri Live, managers can stay engaged with new hires with just a few clicks and SMS messages. They can manage expectations, questions, and concerns to mediate and check in on new employees’ satisfaction with their job in that precarious first 90 days.

Make to plan to address three key waves where new hires start questioning whether they will stay at their jobs: First, make sure they are clear on and have the resources for what they will be doing, their schedule, and their tasks. Next, address whether they have any concerns about their schedule, compensation, or team. Finally, make sure new employees have an idea of how they can advance to other positions and more pay if they stay with the organization.

A positive onboarding experience is your first chance to retain employees. Make sure your procedure is as pain-free and consistent as possible. Visit Harri to learn more about how the platform can improve onboarding and ultimately, retention.

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