Top 6 Challenges Of Onboarding Remote Employees

Top 6 Challenges Of Onboarding Remote Employees

R
by Richard Gall — 5 months ago in Future < 1 min. read
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It is essential to properly onboard remote employees. This is not only for their professional development, but also for the company’s overall growth. It increases employee engagement and retention.

This can help build a stronger company culture and ultimately create a strong employer brand. To achieve all of these great results, however, you must first learn how to properly do remote onboarding.

How to overcome the obstacles of remote employees

Remote onboarding can be both exciting and stressful for employees and employers. Remote onboarding is more complex than traditional in-person.


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Even though technology has made it easier to onboard employees, the lack of face-to-face interaction is still a problem. These are the most common challenges that remote employees will face.

Top 6 Challenges Of Onboarding Remote Employees

1. Overcoming Feelings Of Isolation In New Remote Hires

Remote onboarding, by definition, is meant to make new hires feel valued and welcome. How do you make this happen? Even though the screen is not available, human interaction should still be a key part of welcoming new employees into your company.

Otherwise, employees may feel disconnected and isolated. You can combat this by assigning each new hire a mentor: a colleague who can help them learn and be their point person for the first few weeks.
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2. Prompt Access to Tech and Content

On-site onboarding makes things easy. On their first day, new hires arrive at the office and have access to all company emails and confidential material. What if their “office” is their home? You can use the time between offer acceptance and day one to plan your new hire and make sure everything is ready for them.

This means that you need to send any equipment (e.g., laptops) well in advance. Your hires should be received a few days before their first day so they can easily access their corporate accounts.

On the content side, consider making some parts of your orientation accessible via an invite link – the parts that don’t include sensitive information, obviously. That way, new hires can read up a bit about your company’s values and team members so they feel prepared.

We discuss more all the things you can – and should – do for your new remote hires before day 1 in our employee onboarding eBook.

3. You can personalize your virtual onboarding, but not sacrifice sustainability.

Even though each remote employee will have their own needs, it is important to establish a consistent virtual onboarding process that will work for all of your employees.

A fun survey or quiz can be used to gauge employee’s feelings and determine if they require additional help. This will help you understand what parts of your onboarding are working well and what needs to be improved.
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4. How to teach new hires and what they can learn on the job

What is the limit of information? Remote onboarding is all about giving new employees enough information and tools to help them develop a plan and set goals. You don’t want them to be overwhelmed. Remote work can feel overwhelming if you give too many details or instructions.

Make sure you have a step-by-step plan. Focus on the basics during the initial days. This includes company policies and product tours. It is best to focus on the basics of the day and save the technical details for when the real work begins.

5. Making sure Asynchronous Communication Doesn’t Lead to Miscommunication

Asynchronous communication is often the norm when your team works remotely. It’s a good thing, provided everyone understands what they need to do and respects deadlines. Remote work shouldn’t be accompanied by the additional pressure to be available 24/7 just because your office happens to also serve as your home.

Your communication standards are well-known to your current team members and they take them as a given. You must make these clear to your new employees. WhatsApp messages regarding work are OK, for example.

What about calling personal mobile numbers? What time can people expect to respond to emails, Asana comments, or Slack messages? You can manage expectations by explaining your collaboration style right from the beginning. This will help to avoid a breakdown in communication.
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6. Moving smoothly from Onboarding to Training

If employees are not trained, even the most sophisticated remote onboarding program will be of little benefit to your company. Your LMS platform can be used to facilitate the transition between the two.

Consider including micro-learning sessions in your onboarding training. This will allow new hires to get a feel for how and where the training is taking place, but not be overwhelmed.

Conclusion

Remote onboarding presents many challenges. Practically, remote onboarding requires that you provide access to content and tools in a timely fashion. You must also teach your new employees the basics of your company, without being too overwhelming. It is a good idea to assign a mentor.


You should also establish expectations regarding communication and employee training during remote onboarding. When it comes to employee onboarding, you must strike the right balance between consistency and personalization.

For tips on how to create a remote employee onboarding program that boosts self-confidence and prepares new hires for the future, downloads the eBook Remote Onboarding: How to Welcome Your New Hires Even from Afar. This handy checklist will help you make sure that your new hires are ready for the future.

Richard Gall

Richard is senior editor of The Next Tech. He studied International Communication Management at the Hague University of Applied Sciences.

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