Hiring employees is one thing but the difficult part starts when it comes to retaining employees. To retain quality employees constant efforts are needed. Employee onboarding is crucial for a lower turnover rate but the impact intensifies if it is paperless onboarding.
While the world is going paperless why should onboarding lack? Digitization improves business efficiency, employee productivity, and commitment. While 46% of organizations waste time on paperwork, going paperless facilitates focus on the core operations.
Similarly, when paperless onboarding is practiced, many problems are solved. These are the problems of handling stacks of files, storing data, and tracking updates. Your employees will be relaxed when they wouldn't have to spend extra time in the office for documentation purposes.
Your effort at paperless onboarding will make employees' first day useful. When all the formalities are completed before the real job they would know their next step in your organization. But unfortunately, all talks and no work lead nowhere. It is reported that only one in ten employers onboard well. This is surprising stats that can result in a bad hire, costing you $240,000.
Onboarding well is important but paperless onboarding works as a cherry on top.
What is Paperless Onboarding?
The first thing we think about "paperless" is simply something that doesn't require paper. That is right, being paperless means being on the cloud. It means all the employee onboarding activities are managed online through an onboarding portal. These activities range from the submission of e-onboarding applications to the management of daily tasks.
Whoa! It means everything is now at your fingertips. How efficient!
In this era, people are limited to their smartphone screens. They would not go a step forward if that requires physical effort. Come on, who would want to manage papers anyways? It becomes a mess. Imagine a form requires filling in capital letters and mistakenly you do the opposite. Having no option to edit or copy-paste information means starting from scratch. Ah, that paper tyranny!
So, let us learn about all the boons of paperless onboarding.
Benefits of Paperless Onboarding
Employee onboarding portal also known as paperless onboarding software has many benefits. Of course, everything has both pros and cons but here, the benefits outweigh the drawbacks. Here is what it does.
1. Saves time
What do you think is more expensive than time? Nothing! Time can never be earned once lost. But hey! Time can be saved through the paperless onboarding system. Your employees can efficiently do their chores through the portal without any barriers. Moreover, time to store, revise, and manage the paperwork can but saved for useful activities.
2. Enhances user experience
Studies report, good digital user experience increases a business's conversion rate by 400%. A well-organized portal with easy usage can shoot up your employee productivity.
3. Reduces costs
Paperless onboarding is a one-time investment with a long-term return. The installation costs are high but once operated your employee performance will vouch for the returns. It will save costs like paper costs, pens, inks, etc. that your workforce of thousands uses every day.
4. Minimizes barriers
If you want to demolish communication barriers paperless employee onboarding solutions work best. For instance, if you have an urgent meeting after the lunch break you can freely leave a message on the digital onboarding portal. It works like instant messaging that notifies everyone.
5. Facilitates team bonding
Today, employees are struggling with face-to-face communication. They prefer talking through a screen. Paperless onboarding facilitates employees in their preference by allowing virtual team meetings or filling out personality forms. It helps members in knowing each other better.
6. Increases retention rate
A welcoming and smooth paperless onboarding leads to an 82% higher employee retention rate. This eventually reduces the turnover rate which improves the organization's image in the market.
In addition to these benefits, paperless client onboarding prompts sales. According to stats, 86% of clients stay loyal to a business that invests in quality onboarding. This helps them learn more about the business, its products and receive better post-sales service.
Drawbacks of Paperless Onboarding
While paperless onboarding seems exciting there are some setbacks too. Some of these are as follows.
1. Security concerns
You have learned that paperless onboarding secures data and documents but the same strength is also a weakness. Digitization increases the risk of data breaching. Of course, if you're improving so are the hackers. It requires constant monitoring and modifications to the system to prevent glitches. Observe the hacker culture yourself just like Facebook does.
2. Communication gap
Again communication is both enhanced as well as reduced through paperless onboarding. Firstly, it requires internet for access which may not seem like a big problem but is. The employees may not be available at the same time which would delay everyone's work. For example, if a manager is unavailable the work approval would delay affecting the activities that follow.
3. Poor onboarding
Installing a paperless onboarding portal is all cool but your work does not end here. Employee onboarding is constant as you need to continuously track your employee performance. Just providing access to the portal is not enough. You also need to ensure a well-structured paperless onboarding to avoid the cost of 100-300% of the total employee's salary.
Tips for Paperless Onboarding
Well, to avoid the hassle you need some tips. Why repeat other's mistakes when you can learn from them? Do you know what the basis of all mistakes is? It is spending $0 for onboarding that 35% of the US and UK companies make. So please, spend well on paperless onboarding to attain the digital benefits.
Many organizations divide their onboarding into online and in-house. This might seem like a good strategy but is an illusion. Suppose your employees can fill out the forms digitally but you require the hard copy submission. This is just like putting unnecessary steps to the procedure. Yes, there are always exceptions so decide beforehand what works best for your company. It is wise to use paperless onboarding alone as 52% of HR practitioners globally believe this empowers new employees.
Moreover, it is important to verify employee details first-hand and not rely on paperless onboarding. If done so there is a chance you may hire someone with criminal records. Be careful as there is no room for mistakes in this area.
Furthermore, paperless onboarding has much more to offer than just e-signatures, setting schedules, etc. it also offers virtual meetings and training that are underutilized. Ensure the complete usage of all the services of paperless onboarding portals. You can even conduct virtual meetings to introduce new employees to the teams so there is no social anxiety.
Do not worry about the investments and trouble of installing paperless onboarding. The benefits will start pouring in once you learn to onboard correctly.
Lastly, new employees get bored when their first day is not a learning day. They do not like filling out forms or learning company culture/policies. Conduct pre-boarding so the new hires fuel their job interests and engage well on day one. Did you know? A highly engaged workforce increases a company's profitability by 22%.
We suggest you constantly update your onboarding portals so they are flexible to the changing needs. Change is often difficult to adapt to but having a flexible workforce will save your training costs.
Paperless onboarding is profitable from all aspects if implemented well otherwise it could cost you a lot.
SMART Goals for Paperless Onboarding
The paperless onboarding process is a stretched process. A new employee wants direction and work clarity which requires setting SMART goals for your employees. The purpose of employee onboarding is to settle them down and track their activities for improvement. For this, customize your onboarding portal according to your business's needs. Furthermore, set measurable activities as productivity has many dimensions. Make sure that the goals are not impossible to achieve in time and are realistic.
If your employee goals are ambiguous it means you're unsure of your requirements or have strategized poorly. For this, you need to work on yourself first. Then, make efficient use of the four management functions. Preparation is the key to smooth implementations. These are experiments that will create the best strategy for the paperless onboarding of your employees.
With minimized errors you know where you're going to keep facing your true north.
Final Thoughts About Paperless Onboarding
To sum it up, you need to work on paperless onboarding. The millennials dominate the workforce and are the first to grow up in this digital era. It is fair to say they are the leaders of digitization being a pro at technology usage. Having such a smart generation running many businesses, paperless onboarding is the core requirement.
Such employees are happy with paperless onboarding and adapt quickly. When employees excessively use the internet, nothing should stop them from using paperless onboarding. The internet can be a lifesaver if some instructions are unclear.
Paperless onboarding has more benefits and limited drawbacks. So if you're still reluctant, take our advice and install it as soon as you can. Thank us later!