Tips for an Impactful Onboarding Program

Many companies recruit new employees to join their teams and welcome them into their offices and training environments.  But what can these organisations do to help them have a meaningful learning experience and put them on an accelerated path to success?



Every extra day new employees spend on the learning curve is a day they’re not generating revenue for a company. To expedite the ramping process and reduce the amount of time before those new hires can start contributing, organisations should consider these six tips for an efficient and impactful onboarding program:

1. Defining a clear set of goals from day one

The best onboarding programs are broken down into a logical sequence of small and purposeful steps.  New employees and coaches too, should always understand their progress, what is expected of them for each learning task or topic, and what desired outcomes demonstrate proficiency or readiness to advance.

2. Covering what they need to know

Make sure your new hires are enabled, not just with product knowledge, but with all of the competencies required for the job.  These might include industry and market insights, company branding and messaging, methodology and process, internal expert knowledge and social connections, and how to leverage resources available to them on the job.

3. Rethinking training and reinforcement

Don’t overwhelm your new employees with the dreaded “data dump.”  Embrace some element of self-directed, just-in-time training that mirrors your company’s on-the-job processes, tools, and assets.  This enables them to access and absorb content in the context of the learning task or activity versus trying to memorise information for future use.

4. Making it easy to follow through

Most onboarding programs have a myriad of tasks and activities to track and manage.  All too often, this is done either manually or via spreadsheets.  A centralised, automated learning environment can feed materials at the right time to key stakeholders and easily maintain records of task completion and performance.  Embedding key learning tasks into the daily routine also makes it easy and convenient for new employees and managers to stay engaged with your onboarding program.

5. Giving coaches and managers a better view

New employees need timely encouragement and constructive feedback.  They also need the space to work independently.  An integrated system with transparent, real-time metrics provides visibility and insight to help coaches, trainers, and managers track progress and determine when, where, and how to keep new employees on track and even fine-tune the overall program if any tweaks are necessary.

6. Helping new hires build internal support networks

Veterans often attribute their success to the relationships they’ve nurtured across the organisation.  Give your newbies a running start with collaboration tools that help them easily identify, connect, and engage with resources across your sales support organization.

Following these best practices helps guide new hires towards productivity and peak performance faster, while also allowing them to master the skills and competencies they need in order to be successful on both a personal and professional level.

Mark Chivere is VP of Learning Technology at Accelerate Performance

Written for


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