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Q. What question can you ask new team members to find out how well your onboarding process is working/what needs improving?
1. Ask about their expectations versus reality
During our onboarding process, we routinely discuss what our employees’ expectations were before joining our team, and how those expectations have been met, missed or exceeded. We incorporate this same question into our bi-annual reviews for all our employees as well as a pulse-check on alignment. — Brandon Dempsey, goBRANDgo!
2. Find out whether they have everything they need to be successful
An effective onboarding process provides new hires with the information and tools they need to quickly assimilate into your environment and work productively. It includes not just a lot of HR paperwork, but appropriate training, introduction to key resources, mentorship, and yes, time with the boss. Most of the new hire’s questions, if not all of them, should be answered during this period. — Alexandra Levit, Inspiration at Work
3. Hold a focus group
Hold a focus group regularly (preferably once a quarter) with new employees who have joined in that time period. The agenda should be exactly what the problem statement addresses: how can we make the onboarding process better? Encourage people to participate and jointly come to constructive suggestions. Have them rank the suggestions and take the top ones to HR for implementation. — Karan Chaudhry, Comnplus
4. Ask questions they should know the answers to
Once onboarding is complete, ask team members questions to see how well they digested the information you need them to. If multiple people are hitting the nail on the head on certain questions, you’ll know the process is working in those areas. For questions that people frequently miss, it’s a signal to improve upon what you’re doing to train in that field. — Mark Krassner, Expectful
5. Ask about one surprising thing they’ve learned from their colleagues
This can help you suss out information your new team member has gathered through watercooler conversations outside of formal onboarding and training, which you may want to incorporate for future hires. If they repeat some of the information that your onboarding manager and human resources team are expected to share, then that validates your current onboarding process. — Firas Kittaneh, Amerisleep
6. Find out what almost made them regret joining the company
If you ask just one question, try to find out if there was any point in time that the new team member regretted their decision to join your company. This will give you a big heads up into areas that need immediate improvement. It also lets new team members know that you’re open to suggestions for improvement so they’ll feel comfortable offering solutions in the future. — Nicole Munoz, Start Ranking Now
7. Find out whether they’re overwhelmed
Just like any company, on our team, employees need to learn a lot and fast. We have handbooks, reading resources, orientation day, and further training as needed. The easiest question to ask though is, “Are you overwhelmed yet?” Almost all will say yes, so we can then start the discussion on what we need to review in more detail. — Peter Boyd, PaperStreet Web Design
8. Make sure they inderstand the company’s core values
Great culture beats strategy every day. If during the onboarding process, the core values and beliefs of the business are not conveyed and passed on to new hires, that’s a big miss. You must ask the new hires what they learned about the culture, beliefs and values of the business to determine whether onboarding was ultimately successful. — Eric Mathews, Start Co.
9. Get confirmation of clarity
New hires must adapt quickly and acquire the ability to intuitively focus their time on priority tasks. When a new hire has a list of tasks, clarity of task purpose will help to unclog the flow of this list. One question aimed at exploring this dilemma is: “Are you always clear on what you need to do next?” This ensures the new hire is on board with the team, and that everyone is on the same page. — Andy Eastes, SkuVault
10. Get a sense of their confidence level
A new employee will try to make the best of things. They usually won’t tell you if the onboarding process is inadequate or if they don’t have everything they need to do the job. They try to muddle through, regardless. In my experience, the best way to find out is a one-on-one informal conversation. Chat to them about how they see their role and what they need to do a great job. — Justin Blanchard, ServerMania Inc