Find a Job
163 available

Brightwater Blog

Get expert advice, up-to-date market knowledge and lots more!

Remote Onboarding

02 Apr 2020

Not in the office? Not a problem! Why Remote Onboarding could be the Future for Employers

If there’s anything to be learned from what the COVID-19 pandemic has presented to businesses worldwide, it’s the importance of adaptability and its pertinence in navigating what will ‘suit’ companies going forward.

With many organisations operating with employees working from home, now is not the time to stall but to adapt the hiring process to maximise its talent pool, insights and productivity throughout teams.

As recruiters working with clients still anxious to get new hires in place, we focus here on the future of onboarding remotely and the steps available to all employers to undertake to ensure seamless onboarding whilst working remotely.

  1. Be it onboarding or just general remote working, this will not be possible without ensuring that the appropriate technological and logistical factors are up-to-date and effectively working. Prior to posting out a laptop/desktop to your new employee, ensure that it is working correctly and has in place all of the relevant tools, apps, processes and systems so that, once sent, all involved can hit the ground running. As obvious as this seems, it really is just necessary to carry out as associative problems are much more difficult to fix once everything is sent out.


  2. Laptops or desktops should be sent to the new employee at a minimum of two weeks before their employment commencement date. This will serve as an effective measure for the individual to familiarise themselves with their setup and the tools they will be using most going forward.


  3. D-Day, the first day in the new job. This should be treated as it normally would under normal circumstances. An induction call with I.T should be arranged to affirm that the employee is appropriately set up and a walk-through of tools and systems given. This interaction will also serve as a way of introducing them to other co-workers within the company, with whom they will undoubtedly be having frequent interaction as IT support teams facilitate working from home.


  4. A follow-up call with both a HR associate and the line manager of the employee should then be arranged. This would entail the provision of an employee handbook to read, contract details reaffirmed, and even an introduction into various teams and the team members roles and responsibilities.Access to the employee database will be given as well as a run through of its use and log ins.


  5. Granted, the new employee will not be able to organically meet their co-workers the way they normally would face-to-face. Therefore, a virtual huddle whereby a team or group-wide face-to-virtual-face coffee break is an incredibly effective way to do this. It will allow for them to put a name to a face and their role to a name. Digital engagement and communication is ultimately key in building a strong team who feel consistently inspired and supported, especially when human contact and interaction are not an option.


  6. Something highly recommended when onboarding remotely is the assignment of a team member, preferably of the same seniority, to act as a guide of sorts for the new employee. Granted, they will also have a line manager to report to, but having a co-worker to ask questions, raise queries or even just to act as a sounding board can be hugely beneficial in onboarding more quickly and seamlessly.


  7. Integrating new processes such as webinars, group discussions and training tools can greatly improve on the current skillsets of employees and new employees working remotely. It can serve as a very effective way for teams to engage and grow together and will also allow for management to evaluate what systems work best and which don’t. so that remote working best practice can be tailored going forward.


  8. Ultimately, quarantining and self-isolating indefinitely can leave employees despondent and disconnected, leading to a decrease in productivity and overall group morale. This is largely attributable to the lack of social engagement and human interaction that are an integral part of offices and company set ups. Take this opportunity to focus on the importance of company-wide engagements such as daily check ins, virtual coffee mornings and monthly online newsletters detailing achievements and company activities. Onboarding remotely can still allow for the creation of fantastic work relationships and well-matched teams across all professional cohorts. It’s just a different version of what has always been done!

Onboarding processes need not be abandoned, but merely refined in line with both the technological advancements many organisations are lucky to have afforded to them, as well as an open mindset to such processes working effectively. Is it a readjustment? Absolutely. But could it determine the next steps of your company and talent pool? We know it can.

Contact Brightwater and find out more about our top-tier candidate pool, to help you in your next steps in onboarding remotely.
Dublin: + 535 1 662 1000 | [email protected]
Cork: + 353 21 4221000 | [email protected] + 353 21