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The Value of Re-Onboarding Current Employees as Part of a Retention Strategy

Quick look: Investing in employees is important now more than ever, and HR solutions include everything from increasing health insurance benefits and remote work environments to offering financial advisory services and tuition reimbursement. However, many employers are overlooking an integral part of a retention strategy – onboarding – as a way to stay competitive.

Historically, the demand for workers remains strong, with millions of job openings and a steady number of voluntary resignations still the trend. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports as of the end of September, the number of job openings jumped to 10.7 million with a reported 4.1 million voluntary quits. The current talent pool is still carefully considering its next employment move, which is causing a stir, especially among small- and medium-sized businesses (SMBs).

SMBs are forced to get creative to compete with larger companies when it comes to retention and recruiting. However, the cost of robust compensation packages and expansive benefit programs often stretch budgets beyond what is sustainable. Fortunately, SMB leaders have the option to turn inward to find HR solutions, particularly with regard to the onboarding process.

According to a Gallup report, only 12% of employees feel their company handles onboarding well, which means there’s plenty of room for improvement. Additional data shows companies with a formal onboarding program could experience 50% greater employee retention and 62% greater productivity. The value of re-onboarding allows SMB employers to evaluate current policies and engage employees who may have missed out on a favorable experience the first time around.

Empower employees with re-onboarding

Workforce changes have been fast and furious over the past few years. Many remote hires have been lost in the shuffle, and many seasoned employees have felt left behind regarding the latest company updates. The result is a misalignment of company goals and initiatives and a dip in morale. Creating a re-onboarding program presents employees with a fresh perspective and greater engagement to feel sufficiently supported in their roles.

With people willing to give notice without a new position lined up, re-onboarding current employees is as important as the time, cost, and effort put into recruitment. A person who has been with the company for several years may need a refresher on the available resources and benefit offerings, or a reminder of company policies and core values, which may have evolved over the year. Re-onboarding is especially important for companies experiencing a rebrand, introducing the latest platforms and technologies, and offering distinctive opportunities post-pandemic.

Implementing a re-onboarding process

To improve upon the current onboarding process and complement it with re-onboarding for seasoned employees, it must start with active listening. Addressing employee needs requires reviewing the data and feedback without making assumptions about what they need to succeed. This information can be gathered through employee surveys, performance reviews, and open company forums,

Stay interviews are also an important part of an HR solution when it comes to retention. Often, companies perform an exit interview when a person resigns in order to uncover areas for improvement. However, a stay interview is a strategic step to address problems before it causes an employee to search elsewhere for work. These interviews can take place quarterly or annually and can be conducted informally and/or anonymously.

Additionally, increased interaction between managers and direct reports leaves the door open to tackle issues together before they become bigger problems. It also allows employees to express career development goals and create a solid plan to get where they want to be. 49% of employees want to develop their skills but aren’t sure where to begin, and 29% don’t feel optimistic about the training or upskilling opportunities they receive.

Re-onboarding helps employees uncover tools, technology, and benefits they may not have been privy to before. It also helps employers decide which resources are no longer worth investing in to optimize spending and maximize efforts. Every SMB will have its own unique goals, but here are a few areas to consider when re-onboarding a team.

Communicate company expectations

An overview of the company’s operational policies and goals is important to ensure everyone is on the same page. Companies switching to a remote-only workforce or a hybrid environment should be clear about hours, work setups, and inter-office communication platforms to use. These should then be updated in the employee handbook and redistributed for easy reference in the future.

Highlight resources, tools, and benefits

The re-onboarding process should go beyond a regurgitation of the documents and information initially provided when an employee first started. Instead, it should present the most current benefits available, including new tools, programs, and perks. It should also serve as a space to receive feedback regarding other areas where the company can provide additional resources. The goal is to showcase how the company has evolved and improved, and create a sense of collaboration.

Review processes and/or initiatives

There may be areas which remain unclear regarding certain processes and protocols. For instance, regarding remote work policies or flexible scheduling, it’s important everyone is aware of the guidelines. This includes when it’s permissible to take breaks, rules regarding location notifications, when cameras should be used during video calls, and other details outlining exactly what’s expected and why.

It’s an ideal time to revitalize your workplace and maintain a strong culture. To create a better sense of engagement and alignment, re-onboarding demonstrates a sense of dedication and can smooth any rocky communication. Employees are more likely to prioritize their place in the company if they feel like they are a priority as well.

With the support of a professional employer organization (PEO) partner like ExtensisHR, you can craft and implement a re-onboarding process optimal for your team. We provide comprehensive, customized HR solutions to help SMBs reach their business goals in a cost-effective way.

Employee retention continues to be one of the fundamental drivers of continual growth and success, and our HR experts are here to cater to your specific needs. Contact ExtensisHR today.

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