Onboarding in Different Industries

Onboarding in Different Industries

Onboarding in Different Industries

Onboarding employees is an important process for any company. For new employees to be successful, they have to understand what their job is, who they do it for, and why they’re doing it. But according to research, onboarding is also a common misstep for companies. A recent study by Gallup showed that a whopping 88% of employees felt that their organization did not do a good job with employee onboarding—and that number is as bad as it sounds. If almost 9 out of 10 new hire processes are failing, it’s no wonder that so many companies struggle with worker retention and satisfaction.


The good news is, if employers work to fix their employee onboarding process, the benefits are clear. In that same Gallup study, the 12% of employees who had the best employee onboarding experience were three times more likely to say they had the “best possible job.” Onboarding not only makes sure that employees understand their role, but how they fit into the organization and how they can stay up-to-date on changes. This is especially true for non-desk employees, who may not always have access to a computer but still need to stay informed with workplace matters.


At Yourco, we created our platform with these very people in mind. We want to help companies better communicate with all their employees—specifically, those who do not work in a traditional office setting. Our two-way communication platform lets employers and employees communicate via text message, making it far easier to include non-desk employees in work communications. With Yourco, you can automate texts to go out at certain times, send specific updates to specific employees, and more.


However, creating a good onboarding checklist is the first step to employee success, and Yourco is here to help you do that as well. Read on to learn ways to improve your onboarding framework, and how software solutions like Yourco can help you make those improvements. We’ll also look at how these frameworks can translate into different industries, with a special focus on onboarding non-desk employees.

What Does “Onboarding” Mean for a Job?

The Society for HR Management explains onboarding as “the processes in which new hires are integrated into the organization…as well as [learning] about the organization and its structure, culture, vision, mission and values.” After the onboarding stage, an employee should have a clear picture of not only their job responsibilities but why their role is valuable—to both them and the organization.


“Onboarding” is often confused with “orientation:” a phase that introduces the worker to their job and work environment, oftentimes only taking a day or two. But integrating a new hire is something that takes weeks or months to complete, as the employee needs time to become familiar with their role and the organization. Orientation, while important, is just one of the steps in a good onboarding program.


What makes a successful onboarding program, and how do they look different from industry to industry? While the specifics of each job will obviously differ, there actually isn’t much of a difference between the core onboarding components for one industry versus another. It all boils down to the same core ideas: clear communication, empathy, and knowing how to meet people where they are.

What Are the 3 Phases of Onboarding?

A successful onboarding program will focus on three major phases, organized by their primary goals:

  1. Administrative | Filling out essential paperwork and completing legal documents
  2. Orientation | Introducing the employee to their work environment and acclimating them to it
  3. Enablement | Ensuring new hires are set up for future success as they continue working

Each of these phases should be distinct and have their own dedicated time, as they are all equally important to bringing on a new worker. Too often, companies rush this process by cramming all three phases into a day or two, usually because they want to get workers into a productivity phase as quickly as possible. But ironically, hurrying through onboarding ensures the employee will be less productive as a worker—and possibly that they won’t stick around for long.


No matter what industry you’re in, your onboarding experience should be more than the bare minimum that gets new hires working. It’s not just about showing the employee what they’ll do for the company; it should also show what the company will do for them—and why they should want to stay an employee. This idea is called the employee value proposition (EVP), and a good place to start building your EVP is with a framework known as the “5 C’s of Onboarding.”

What Are the 5 C’s of Onboarding?

The 5 C’s of Onboarding are a set of guidelines for making sure an employee is fully integrated into their job. They consist of the hiring process as well as on-the-job learnings. Ideally, if the three phases of onboarding are done thoroughly (Administrative, Orientation, and Enablement), an employee should experience each of the 5 C’s throughout that process. They are as follows:


Compliance is making sure the employee is in line with all legal requirements, policies, and company-specific obligations. Compliance includes documents like tax forms and other federal paperwork, but it also includes anything needed for the job specifically, such as equipment, nametags, personal storage space, or company email addresses—if the employee gets one.


Here, we can already see the disconnect between non-desk employees and desk employees begin. Many times, desk employees will have a company email that is used to contact them, where deskless employees either will not have one at all or too limited of access to a computer for it to matter. For example, in a landscape design company, a designer or foreman will receive a company email address, but a laborer will most likely not get one. And without a reliable means of contact, laborers may struggle to stay updated with changes to the projects they’re helping build.

Ease the Paperwork Process With Yourco

If a worker doesn’t receive a company email address, it can make the process of collecting tax information, HR documentation, and other essential paperwork more challenging. For non-desk employees without computers, this usually means having to find ways to print, scan, and/or mail paper documents to their employer, which adds a lot of work for them. But with Yourco, employees can complete these forms through SMS text messaging, making it easier for them to do and easier for you to document.


Clarification is all about making sure new hires know everything their job entails—and everything that it doesn’t. A clear understanding of roles, responsibilities, and what additional tasks may be required is vital for establishing trust with a workforce. No one wants to feel blindsided by a task they didn’t expect or be held accountable for things they were unaware of.


Good clarification should also include how employees will know if and when something changes about their role. If an employee doesn’t have a reliable form of communication with their employer, they are forced to rely on their coworkers for updates or learning on-the-job when their performance doesn’t match expectations. This communication breakdown typically happens to non-desk employees, especially those who are constantly in the field or not included on office communication channels such as email. Yourco bridges that gap, letting employers reach out to employees anywhere they have phone service and keeping them informed when it matters most.


Ideally, every employee should feel comfortable with their role and taking on new challenges in their job as the unexpected occurs. That’s exactly what the confidence part of onboarding is about: empowering employees to take ownership over their role. While an employer technically can’t “make” their staff feel confident, there are workplace elements that foster confidence. Some examples include clearly explaining employees’ roles, expressing the value they bring to the company, and establishing a trusting relationship that doesn’t make them feel micromanaged.


Confidence is also about giving employees clear points of contact when they need support, as well as ways to reach that support. If an employee knows where to go when they have questions or are unsure about a decision, they’ll feel more comfortable making choices on their own. And if the employee does need help, they will know where to go. Additionally, if workers feel like they’re in the loop on all work-related issues, they won’t wonder if they’re missing information when making decisions on the job.


Human nature is built around fostering relationships with others, and work is no different. Someone who feels included at work is not only more comfortable being there, but more comfortable performing their job—and far more likely to stay in the long run. Being connected at work is a three-pronged goal: employees need to feel connected to their coworkers, their role, and the organization. A successful work environment for a new hire means they have all three forms of connection—none can be left out.


What does that entail, exactly? Let’s look at each type of connection individually:

  • For connecting to coworkers, it’s about creating space for building relationships, especially with people they work in close proximity with.
  • Connection to the role requires an understanding of how it brings value to the organization, and an alignment of the job’s responsibilities with that person’s goals.
  • Last but not least, connecting to the organization is about feeling updated on what’s happening in the company, no matter who you are or what position you hold.

Oftentimes, non-desk employees can feel disconnected from their company because they don’t receive regular communication, and will often know desk employees that do get regular communication. Disconnect can also happen when employees don’t work at the same time as their managers, such as night-shift or third-shift workers. With Yourco, you can not only reach these employees easier, but you can even automate text messages to go out when they’re working. This makes them feel more included in the organization, and that they’re receiving the info they need when they need it—not just when their day-shift counterparts are receiving it.


We often hear “culture” used as a bland corporate term, but what does culture actually mean for a workplace? Culture is not just about how employees talk to each other, it’s also about the shared values everyone working there holds. New hires need to clearly see what matters to the people they work with because that’s how they determine whether their values align. A true sense of belonging comes from not just the people you work with, but the brand you work under: feeling proud to represent a shared idea. That’s what culture is really about in the workplace, and culture should be universally felt, regardless of what kind of role each employee plays in the organization.


Additionally, you may also occasionally see the “6 C’s of Onboarding” referenced, in which case a sixth element—Checkback—was added as of 2022. This step is essentially following up to make sure the employee is thriving in their role and that they understand all necessary pieces of their job. Checkback also verifies the employee knows how to stay updated on workplace changes.

Yourco: Onboarding New Employees, Maximizing Success

If your employees had to describe your onboarding experience in one sentence, what would they say? With a platform like Yourco at your fingertips, some words in that sentence will likely be “easy,” “helpful,” and “informative”—whether they’re in an office or in the field. Our text-based communication platform helps you make onboarding a universal experience for all employees, and ensures your non-desk employees don’t feel like an afterthought. Fill out paperwork, send personalized reminders, and keep them up to speed on everything they need to thrive at their job.


What companies use for onboarding employees can boost other aspects of company communications—that is, if they’re using Yourco. With Yourco, you can share information with all your employees at any time, and on their schedules. Send company-wide updates, communicate with workers while they’re out of office, or automate reminders for the night shift while you’re sound asleep in bed. The possibilities are endless!


Check out our demo to see what our platform can do, or reach out to us with any questions!

Additional Reading

We use Yourco for mass scheduling to be sent out to employees and [to collect employee] responses. Amazing tool and works well for us.

Sean Armstrong
President at Inline Painting