Onboarding is officially the organizational socialisation of new employees once they have started a new role… Much of the Onbaoarding process takes place once the employee has started their new position and officially become an “employee”. However with the decline in the availability of top talent it is important to start the onboarding process before a candidate starts.

Recruitment has changed. No longer do organisations advertise a position, sift the applicants, interview the top 5 candidates and offer the job to the best of the interviewees. The recruitment methods used today usually involves approaching passive candidates in order to find potential interviewees. Adverts are ceremoniously disregarded by candidates. With so many recruiters chasing such a small talent pool it is important to ensure your companies on-boarding practices are thorough.

With the model from yesteryear candidates would stop applying for positions (and therefore stop having interviews) once they had been offered and accepted a role. Today there is a very good chance that candidates will be approached with alternative roles in between being offered the role and the proposed start date. This means that any company that is recruiting in todays’ market must invest time in on-boarding during a candidates notice period.

Obviously there are limits to how much onboarding can be carried out whilst a candidate is still working in their old job and there is also a fine line between onboarding and appearing needy. There are however a number of things which can be done to try and mitigate the chances of a candidates’ head being swayed in-between accepting an offer and starting a new role.

Staying in touch with the candidate is quite an obvious onboarding tactic but can be ignored by companies unaware of the competitive state of the market. A few simple emails containing information about what the candidate should expect in their first few days / weeks will certainly help. Keeping the candidate informed with regards to any departmental / company news is also a good idea.

As I’ve already mentioned carrying out onboarding before a candidate has even started the role is a practice which needs to be dealt with carefully. Too much and the candidate may be a bit put off and feel smothered. Too little and their head could be swayed elsewhere. Thankfully the vast majority of candidates are good to their word and will honour a commitment – perhaps people think that those that are swayed wouldn’t have been worth the effort of onbaording? However if this helps retain the 1% that disappear between acceptance and start date it must be worth it??