70% of employees with a Positive Onboarding Experience

Remained with the company after 3 years

First impressions hold significant weight, particularly when embarking on a new career journey. 

This statistic emanates from a study conducted by SHRM. Additionally, further research highlights the profound impacts of a positive onboarding experience:

CareerBuilder discovered that organizations investing in onboarding programs witness 50% lower turnover rates compared to those without such investments.


The Aberdeen Group determined that companies employing a structured onboarding process enjoy 35% higher employee engagement rates in contrast to those that do not.

These findings represent substantial, paradigm-shifting insights.

Why is onboarding vital?

There are numerous reasons, but one aspect that resonates strongly relates to Buyer’s Remorse. Consider a moment when you made a substantial purchase or life-altering decision. Have you ever second-guessed that monumental choice? This reaction is part of human nature. An exemplary onboarding program that commences prior to an employee’s first day reaffirms their decision, enhancing their overall satisfaction.

In my 22-year career within the IT recruiting industry, where I specialize in placing Engineers and Architects, I have observed various onboarding programs and had the honor of placing thousands of professionals. Based on this extensive experience combined with research, here are our top recommended onboarding techniques to create a significant impact:

1. Foster Relationships Early: Introduce new hires to their peers during the interview process. This leads to increased acceptance, loyalty, and reduced counteroffer acceptances.

2. Initiate Communication: Have managers send a welcoming note or personal message before starting, expressing excitement to work together.

3. Send an Onboarding Gift or Care Package: This gesture, ranging from cookies to company merchandise, adds a personal touch and helps create a welcoming atmosphere.

4. Ensure an Organized First Day: Have workstations prepared and all access ready to create an impression of efficiency and organization.

5. Offer Complimentary Food: Whether it’s catering breakfast or sending a meal to a remote employee, a shared meal can foster connection.

6. Assign a Mentor: Mentors provide guidance, helping new hires to quickly acclimate to their new environment.

7. Clarify Expectations: Transparent communication about roles and responsibilities helps in retaining talent and ensures alignment between expectations and reality.

8. Conduct a 90-Day Review: Scheduled meetings to discuss progress and suggestions for the future provide ongoing support and dialogue.

A strong onboarding program involves numerous components, but the aforementioned items are often the most neglected.

Remember the age-old wisdom, “nobody cares how much you know until they know how much you care.” Demonstrate your care, and you will set a tone that will resonate with your new employees for years to come, aligning them with the goals and values of your company.

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