9 Learnings from the Appical Roundtables 2021

Victor Romijn
January 27, 2022
min read
Table of Contents
Happy new year! As we start fresh into a new series of Appical client roundtables in 2022, let’s have a look back at the 9 key learnings from our roundtable discussions last year. Over the year 2021, we had the pleasure of organizing 22 roundtables in Dutch and English. Hosted by our senior Customer Success Manager Victor Romijn, the roundtables focused on a variety of topics ranging from manager involvement over tips for global onboarding to creative use cases of the Appical platform. Stay with us when we highlight our 9 key takeaways.

1. Good Onboarding needs good KPIs

Just as you would set goals or key performance indicators (short KPIs) for your sales or customer facing teams, your onboarding program needs it too! The beauty? The milestones you set for your new hires can directly translate into your team KPIs. This gives you and your team more opportunities to track the progress & make better decisions. 

But your new hires profit from set KPIs too. Participants of our roundtables found that setting onboarding KPIs for their new hires in view of the complete employee lifecycle gets them 3-5% more productive early on. Check out the graph below to see how good KPIs get your talent fully contributing faster.

2. Connect Screening and Onboarding for the best candidate experience  

Employees should be screened when they have access to sensitive information or a large sum of money. Depending on the intensity needed, a light, medium or heavy level of screening is commonly applied. While screening usually takes place in the recruiting phase and is therefore a responsibility of the recruiter, employees in high or medium screening levels are generally re-screened regularly. To ensure the highest user-friendliness for your new and existing employees, the roundtables concluded to integrate your screening and onboarding in one place.    

3. Think global, act local

The most challenging part in onboarding for many international companies? Finding the right split between including locally relevant information and covering the global company aspects such as history, culture, vision or mission. The solution? Think global, act local when balancing the content for your onboarding program. But how do you “act glocally”? Our clients use groups, set custom tags and prepare streamlined check-lists for each new hire. This way, each talent only receives the information that is relevant to them. No matter if it's the location of the office printers or a rundown on the company's history.

4. People don’t leave a company, they leave an unsupportive manager

It is not a secret that active manager involvement is seen as the secret ingredient to a successful onboarding process. Checklists, templates, intranet pages or in-person courses - the list of HR’s supporting tools for managers is long. But as a manager's attention for onboarding decreases continuously, the support best lands at moments that are relevant to the manager. Our takeaway: use workflows, set up reminders and install a manager toolkit to empower and involve your hiring managers from an early stage.

5. Non-desk workers need personalized onboarding, too!

As conversations about onboarding in a hybrid workplace are intensifying around the turn of the year, one workgroup should not be left forgotten: non-desk workers. While their occupation still often requires them to work on-location, their onboarding is increasingly taking place online. This brings up the challenge of digitally preparing someone for their in-person job. Our roundtable takeaway here: focus even more on collecting personal feedback, ensure your content has an engaging mix between text, images, videos and quizzes and your line managers are trained to engage and motivate from Day 1. This has helped some of our clients to decrease their time to productivity with over 60%.

6. Get creative when filling your onboarding app with content

One roundtable session was used to discuss creative ways to fill the Appical onboarding platform with content. Our winner? A company that found an innovative way to use the glossary functionality. While it’s generally used as a list of terms and expressions to immerse new employees in the company jargon quicker, the company realized that it found a higher adoption oncefilled with visual content like office floor plans. We love it!

7. Hybrid onboarding in the healthcare industry, this is how you do it!

Despite being one of the most important sectors in a COVID-impacted 2021, many hospitals struggled to combine virtual and physical components in their employee onboarding programs. One of our clients in the roundtable found a great solution: organize a scavenger hunt on-location that is guided via the virtual onboarding app. That way, new employees get a blended learning experience and their virtual companion in the preboarding phase, the Appical app, accompanies them on their first day on location. 

8. Data in onboarding 

Even for award-winning onboarding programs, the road doesn’t end there. The discussion in the roundtable concluded the same thing: successful onboarding processes stay on top of their new hires changing wishes and demands. Particularly in a COVID-impacted world with new developments and regulations, the data you collect during the onboarding of your new hires is extremely valuable. Thus the learning: find a good way to display & use the data continuously and don’t shy away from making optimisations based on your insights. Your new hires will thank you.

9. Showing your employer brand in Appical 

As the first interaction with your company after the recruiting process, onboarding is an important part of formulating and bringing across your employer brand. How can you go the extra mile you ask? Ensure all visual options (like font, color, images and videos) are aligned and the copy has the same tone of voice throughout all chapters. One tip for larger corporations with multiple subsidiaries: apply personas (your marketing team can tell you all about it) that make your life easy when thinking about the different target organizations. 

Another tip: assign one “head editor” to oversee the tone of voice and align the content your individual departments deliver. 

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