You may not realize it, but your learning management system’s (LMS) onboarding program is pivotal for building trust and establishing a strong report with new employees.
Onboarding software is pivotal in the e-learning industry because it’s the first step new hires take after getting their foot in the door. Onboarding materials help us manage, deliver, and measure an organization’s onboarding process and new hire training programs.
The key purpose is to spark new employee engagement and ramp-up learners as quickly as possible by providing them with training materials they need to be successful in a particular role (and because an LMS requires so many resources, time *to ramp* is money).
Like the start of any journey, onboarding can make or break an employee’s experience with a company, a customer’s experience adopting a product, or a channel partner’s impact on sales. Seriously, no kidding – it’s a big deal. Think about your first day at a company: if your employee training and overall training process is poor, that sets a poor tone for the start of that professional relationship and can even impact employee retention (oof).
In other words, it is incredibly important to start all of these journeys with a strong, straightforward onboarding process. It’s easy really – you just have to focus on making sure team members or various learners enjoy working hard for you and learning about you as much as you enjoyed when they signed their contract!
The best news here is that the latest learning technologies are less time-consuming than ever before while providing even higher impact training courses that help increase the efficiency and effectiveness of your onboarding programs. This, my friends, ultimately leads to organizational success. But wait, there’s more (below 😉).
#1. Why use onboarding software?
As mentioned, the key purpose of customer, partner, member, or employee onboarding software is to create an orientation process that shines and enables your new recruits to come out of the gates “crushing it” as the hip sales reps say.
The goal of most onboarding solutions is to integrate a new employee into your organization or familiarize a customer, client, or partner with your product and/or services. The quicker they can retain the information they need, the quicker they’ll be able to perform on their end for the business. These are where the money moves are (cha-ching).
Aside from that, there are many business benefits to using software to deploy your onboarding programs. Onboarding software can:
- Cut training costs (yep, you read that right)
- Accommodate multiple learning audiences with specific training
- Decrease employee turnover
- Decrease customer churn
- Improve channel partner performance
As for learners, onboarding software can:
- Provide a centralized location for training content and learning materials
- Initiate learning paths
- Increase ramp-up time
- Maximize productivity
- Improve performance
(Yes, you also read all these right too).
Onboarding software is used globally, across different industries – let’s take a closer look at these particular use case studies and how onboarding software can better support them.
#2. Onboarding customers
Onboarding customers is key for industries where the value of a customer increases after the sale, such as with software-as-a-service (SaaS) business models. The cost of acquiring a new customer is anywhere from five to 25 times higher than retaining an existing customer – in other words, customer churn is hugely detrimental for businesses.
Onboarding customers can help to reduce churn because it helps to empower your customers and clients to get more value out of your product or service. All customers are not created equal – some need more nurturing than others to become successful. It’s not enough to have a knowledge base or library of resources for your customers (although, this is a good start).
As Chris Williams explains on Kapost’s Marketeer blog, structured onboarding is crucial for simultaneously decreasing customer support time while increasing customer profitability.
Software is an instrumental part of creating, deploying, and measuring customer onboarding, as well as ensuring customer success.
#3. Onboarding partners
Channel partners can bring a lot of value to your business; however, as with any business partnership, there’s a lot that can go wrong.
According to Steven Jones, VP of Strategic Development at SpringCM, “Onboarding is the most important step in a channel partner relationship. This initial phase is all about first impressions – and first impressions are everything. A poor onboarding experience can quickly devalue your partner relationship before it even begins.”
A poor onboarding experience can lower your business’ credibility and ruin the possibility for future partnerships. More importantly, poor onboarding could reduce the value that channel partners can bring to your organization, thereby stunting growth and limiting success.
Technology can play a large role in ensuring that your business partnerships end up working to your organization’s benefit. Specifically, onboarding software can help organizations to establish an onboarding process and track partner progress.
Perhaps the best thing about leveraging web-based training software for onboarding is that it will provide real insight into how training is impacting partner performance. You will be able to see a correlation between partners who participate in training and their sales success, versus those who do not.
#4. Onboarding employees
A recent study by SHRM found that new employees who completed structured onboarding programs and training sessions were 69% more likely to remain at the company for up to three years. However, another study by Allied reported that only 66% of organizations train their new employees as part of their onboarding program (not great).
LMS software can be hugely helpful for delivering and measuring training as part of the employee onboarding process.
The goals of employee onboarding or orientation are pretty straightforward. An employee onboarding strategy introduces new hires to the company’s culture and policies, as well as training them on their specific job function and (of course) the company’s product or service. They must also complete any compliance-related training (e.g., workplace health and safety).
#5. Facilitating the onboarding process
The value of onboarding your customers, partners, and employees can’t be overstated. It’s important to have the right learning technology in place to support the onboarding process.
At a basic level, your onboarding software should be able to support a few key functions:
Leverage grouping: Your learning technology shouldn’t create more work. It should allow for the automation of recurring administrative tasks, such as user grouping, enrollment, etc. in order to increase efficiency.
Keep learners on track: Learning software should empower learners to be able to find the information they need, when they need it, as well as enable them to learn at their own pace. It should also keep learners on track so they can get ramped-up as quickly as possible. Keep healthy deadlines for your people so they ramp efficiently.
An added note – your LMS should support features like notifications, certification/retraining management, mobile learning, social learning, and gamification to make it even easier for learners to stay the course.
Work with your existing technology stack: Your onboarding software should provide out-of-the-box integrations with tools that are already essential to your business operations, such as your CRM, video conferencing tools, Slack, and so on.
Assemble the team for your dream: Make sure you’re able to delegate. Being able to assign instructors, admins, and managers help keep learners accountable and successful. Having people function in these different ways allows learners to receive development, feedback, new courses, and input from the proper channels.
Provide insights: Successful onboarding programs are those that drive measurable results. Onboarding tools should also provide insights into learner progress that will allow you to link learning to organizational performance.
Most importantly, your LMS should be able to evolve with your organization’s growth and your future learner needs. Your onboarding programs are guaranteed to change along with your business – ensure your learning management system can keep up.
#6. Final thoughts
At the end of the day, whether you are onboarding customers, partners, members, or employees you want them to fall in love with their experience. Expansions and trust in your brand all come together when organizations are able to get their people ramping better and faster than ever, and that’s what an LMS for onboarding solves for, folks.