Updated March 26, 2020
Video interviewing is helping essential businesses interview candidates during the coronavirus pandemic.
Recruiters and Job Applicants are Working Remotely
- Recruiters can interview candidates while working from home
- Applicants can talk to hiring managers while self-isolating
- Hiring teams can record video interviews for remote collaboration
Face-to-face interviewing is very difficult if not impossible right now. The days of in-person interaction are on hold. Video interviewing platforms are critical right now.
Video interviewing platforms create a streamlined, consistent and convenient interview process—a process that makes life easier for both applicants and hiring managers. When hiring processes have been turned upside down, anything that makes life easier for recruiters is worth its weight in gold.
So how does it work?
Hiring managers looking to invest in video interviewing platforms have two options: one-way recorded interviewing or two-way live interviewing.
One-Way Video Interviewing
Employers using the one-way video interviewing process send a list of questions and topics to the applicants ahead of the scheduled interview date. Applicants have the opportunity to read over the questions and come up with answers on their own time (like after dinner, over the weekend, or really whenever they want). Then they send back a video of themselves answering the questions. It’s simple and efficient.
- Create text or video based questions
- Limit think time
- Control the number of allotted takes
- Restrict max answer length
One-way video technology places responsibility in the hands of the applicants by giving them time to formulate answers and requiring them to submit their response on their own time. While they don’t have to make the drive to an office, they do have to set up a video recording of themselves.
Two-Way Video Interviewing
The two-way live video interview process is similar to traditional face-to-face interviews. Hiring managers who want to use this process need to contact the applicant and schedule a time that works for both parties. Applicants scheduled for a two-way video interview prepare as they would for a traditional interview process—by compiling a resume, analyzing their strengths and weaknesses and coming up with answers for possible questions.
- Record full-length interviews
- Brand your interviews
- Conduct interviews directly in your web browser
- Receive concierge support
What are the benefits of video interviewing?
There are plenty of reasons to invest in video interviewing platforms. Some of the benefits hiring managers gain from switching to video interviewing are:
- It’s cost effective
- It’s easier to schedule and can take place after work hours
- Allows for consistent interview questions
- Easy to track performance and compare applicants
- Reveals how candidates handle technology
- Helps hiring mangers find employees they wouldn’t have found otherwise
The right video interviewing technology saves time, energy and money. It allows hiring managers with packed schedules to find the right time for an interview—even if it’s after work hours—and gives applicants the convenience of interviewing from their own home (or wherever they feel most comfortable).
The option to choose a convenient location is one of the most valuable benefits. Video interviewing gives candidates who aren’t entirely committed to pursuing an open position the opportunity to interview—without having to worry about the inconvenience of transportation. And sometimes the best fit for an open position is the talented candidate who isn’t sure what they want or isn’t sure if they have the time to drive across town for an interview.
Tips for successful video interviewing
There are, of course, a few important things to remember when using video interviewing technology. Unreliable internet connection, difficulty performing in front of a camera, finding a quiet place for the interview—these are some potential difficulties for video interviews. But these problems are easy to avoid and hiring managers should give applicants a brief explanation of how the process works beforehand.
Hiring managers also have the choice to use video interviewing for some positions and not others. They may want to reserve video technology for applicants from out of town or those applying for remote positions. The flexibility of video interviewing gives hiring managers and applicants the opportunity to communicate and determine which option works best.
There’s no reason for employers to miss out on streamlining their interview process and securing the best talent. Companies that implement video interviewing technology may have an edge over companies relying on in-person meetings.
Getting the most out of video technology
Video interviewing technology alone is helpful. But when paired with an applicant tracking software, it’s transformative—it’s the missing piece of the hiring puzzle that completes the picture and enhances a company’s performance.
HR reps and hiring managers who use an applicant tracking software integrated with a video interview system are able to perform one-way or two-way live video interviews and compare applicants with help from other applicant tracking software features. Using these tools together allows for a seamless hiring process, from screening applications to performing interviews to onboarding.
After screening and ranking applications, hiring managers and HR departments can determine which applicants they want to interview. And after scheduling and completing the interviews, they can watch the videos, compare them to performances from other candidates and submit feedback using their applicant tracking system review features.
Use Video Interviewing to Connect With Quality Candidates Anywhere
Companies who want the top talent need the right technology. An applicant tracking system like ApplicantStack integrated with a best-in-class video interviewing platform, gives companies the edge they need to find the right fit for open positions. By relying on video interviews, hiring managers can save time, energy, and money—all while analyzing each applicant.
ApplicantStack, the affordable, full-featured applicant tracking system trusted by over 1,500 companies to manage their candidates and workflows, integrates with Spark Hire, Inc. for video interviewing.
Spark Hire is a video interviewing platform used by more than 3,000 organizations to make better hires in a fraction of the time. For more information about Spark Hire go to Spark Hire.
For many companies, a new year might mean that there’s an opportunity to hire new employees.
While initially exciting, recruiting can be an exhausting process, and interviewing can feel tedious. By the time those processes are “over” (are they ever really over?), it’s not unlikely that hiring managers would leave the thoughts of employee onboarding behind.
While this is understandable, it’s a mistake. Onboarding is the second most important HR practice after recruiting, in regards to economic influence on a business. In other words, onboarding is an incredibly important step in hiring new employees. It shouldn’t be put together at the last moment, let alone forgotten about completely.
Whether you’re starting your onboarding program up for the first time or looking for some new, unique ideas, 2020 is the year to get it right.
Onboarding ideas for 2020
Traditional onboarding often entails boring paperwork, endless PowerPoints, cringey videos from the 90s, and uncomfortable icebreakers. In other words, it’s not always a great experience for new employees. And while this process might be at the bottom of your to-do list to improve, know this: great employee onboarding can improve retention by 82%. That’s no small number.
There’s more to your company than those monotonous activities, and it’s never too late to get a little creative in order to show that off.
Below, we’ve listed some of the ways to make onboarding a more exciting process for both new employees and their hiring managers.
1. Check off the basics
Before you come up with any wild ideas for how you can incorporate your company culture into onboarding, it’s important not to forget the basics of onboarding.
Things such as going over company policies, providing new employees with IT equipment, and check-ins are an absolute must. Make sure that these things are prominent on your onboarding checklist—while these things might be the least exciting part of the onboarding process, they’re absolutely imperative for the success of any employee.
2. Don’t wait until day one
The anxiety behind a new job is real, and not hearing from an employer in between their acceptance and their first day doesn’t help.
In order to alleviate some stress, start onboarding before they walk through the door. A helpful email from HR outlining what to expect their first few days, a quick phone or video call with their new manager so that they can introduce themselves, providing them with access to onboarding software to encourage communication, or even a virtual tour of the office are some of the ways that you can reach out to new hires to keep them out of the dark.
3. Make their first day one to remember
First impressions matter. While you may think that you giving your new employee their job is a first impression, the true test comes on their first day. Creating a friendly, warm, welcoming environment won’t go unnoticed, but if you truly want to blow them out of the water, do the following:
Provide them with some swag. Neatly placing a branded out water bottle, T-shirt, and even a few branded stickers or office supplies to get them started will be the first step to getting an employee truly feeling like part of the team.
Take them out to lunch. Giving new hires a chance to get to know yourself and one another in a less rigid environment makes it easier for them to create casual relationships first, which can then be molded into professional ones later down the line.
While these things feel standard, you’d be surprised at how many companies prefer to have their employees spend their first day filling out paperwork and being sent home early. While that might sound great for some people, it’s not as much fun as telling someone that you spent the morning designing your own custom Bitmoji to be slapped up on the office wall (that’s what G2 did for us!)
4. Keep it creative
One of the most common things that people experience in the onboarding process is boredom. Referenced above, those PowerPoints and paperwork are often necessary, but don’t have to be the only way that you can teach new employees about what it means to work for your company.
Redesigning your employee handbook with some desktop publishing software to make it more friendly, colorful, and attractive is a step to consider; while the information itself can be dry, you’d be surprised what a great infographic or two could do for your new hires.
Physically creative materials are plenty, but if you really want to impress, take the time to make a more meaningful, interactive, and creative experience for new employees.
Replacing icebreakers with scavenger hunts around the office or assigning “quests” like finding the coffee machine or giving the CEO a high five before lunchtime are more than just fun; they encourage collaboration, communication, and teamwork, right off the bat.
5. Introduce them to the team
As technology consumes our lives, it seems that a quick email or Slack message may be all you have to do as an employer to introduce a new employee to the team.
But now, more than ever, it’s important to make things personal. There’s no better way to do so than by taking the time to introduce your new employees to their team with good, old fashioned verbal communication.
Slack and email are fast and seemingly intimate, but they don’t prompt a conversation in the same way that good, old fashioned face-to-face interaction does. By setting up a meeting or even a quick lunch with a few team members to join your new employee, you’ll expose them to new people, give them a chance to ask questions to those who will have the same goals as they do, and begin to build more relationships than they would if they were introduced over a screen.
If you have remote employees and onboarding has to take place via a video conferencing tool, make sure that you’re engaging all employees. Ask everyone to keep their video on and try to encourage all participants to chat and contribute. Consider having a virtual lunch with their new team members where each member conferences in and chat while eating lunch, almost replacing the water-cooler chat that in-office team members get.
6. Assign them a mentor
Even with that in-person introduction, there’s a chance that your new employee may not feel comfortable approaching those same people with questions.
Assigning a mentor to new employees can prevent the event of questions being left unanswered. Having that mentor set up some 1:1 time with that new employee for their first few weeks as they settle in to talk anything feedback, company, and culture can make a world of difference in someone’s confidence.
7. Rotate managers amongst associates
If you’re hiring a manager, it’s never a bad idea to create a program in which they can meet multiple employees in other roles, both higher and lower in the hierarchy than them.
While managers can be onboarded in the same way as an associate in the beginning, it’s important to make sure that they are exposed to the employees who will be working under them and incorporate an educational experience in which they’ll learn the ins and outs of the company, from the bottom up. The day-to-day tasks that they’ll be assigning those below them are just as important as learning internal communication skills with those above them, and week one is as good a place to start as any.
8. Rotate associates amongst higher-ups
It’s just as important for a new associate to become familiar with company management as it is the other way around.
Setting up meetings for a group of new hires with their department manager and even C-Suite executives can help them feel more at home and comfortable asking questions, while providing higher level employees an opportunity to share stories, tips, and experiences to help new hires adjust to their new environment.
9. Don’t stop after week one
Onboarding isn’t a one week process, and it might not even be a one month one. Research has shown that it may take six to 12 months for an employee to feel like they have completely onboarded into a company. Being transparent with employees, providing training opportunities, scheduling check-in meetings on a regular basis, and giving them chances to transition smoothly from one stage of their career into the next are all part of the onboarding process that hiring managers are responsible for. Have them keep track of their training progress throughout the first week, month, and year with a project management tool.
10. Ask for feedback
Whether your company’s onboarding process lasts two weeks or two months, it’s always important to ask for feedback. Although you and your team have taken the time to design the process that new employees go through, they’re the ones experiencing it. Some may wish that something had been explained sooner, some may prefer to have a vegetarian option at lunch, and some may prefer more time to do one activity than another.
Be open to all input that these new employees are providing you, and keep track of what they’re saying. You can even create a survey with both qualitative and quantitative options to present to higher-ups at the end of a new process.
New Year’s resolution: create a great onboarding program
A new year doesn’t just mean new hires – it means new experiences. Providing both your new hires and your hiring team with something fresh to implement and participate in can motivate not only new employees, but your more seasoned ones to work harder, smarter, and have a sense of belonging where it matters most.
By Daniella Alscher, Guest Contributor
Daniella Alscher is a content marketer at G2.com with a focus on marketing automation and graphic design. When she’s not working, she’s hanging out with a good book, watching an intriguing cultural documentary, or eating a PB&J.
After hiring, onboarding is one of the most important HR functions. Whether large or small, every organization should bring new employees on in a structured and efficient manner.
Do onboarding well and you dramatically increase the odds that you retain top talent in your organization. You may be surprised to learn that:
The details may vary but the fundamentals of onboarding are the same. Certainly, the goals are the same: streamline and accelerate the process that transitions new hires to fully productive employees making a positive contribution to the team.
Onboarding is for Everyone
Your onboarding strategy may differ by the type of employee you hire. For example, onboarding an executive may be quite different from onboarding a junior accountant. Similarly, Gartner suggests that hiring and onboarding virtual, gig economy workers takes a heavier emphasis on inclusion and engagement.
Regardless of the employee type or the duration of employment, onboarding is essential. After all, anyone who works for you—even seasonally, part time, or as an intern—represents your company. They affect morale, efficiency, and brand.
In fact, the shorter the likely duration of employment, the more important it is to onboard efficiently and effectively. Onboarding seasonal workers, part-time employees, remote employees and interns is as important as onboarding full-time staff. You can see the value for yourself by watching a short Harvard Business School video featuring three students who talk about their internship onboarding experiences.
The Goldilocks Approach to Onboarding
The best onboarding program finds the right balance between focus on the new hire and productivity of the organization. By organizing and standardizing common tasks, you can make onboarding more efficient for everyone.
Onboarding that is ‘just right’ quickly connects new hires to payroll, gives them the tools they need for the job, and engages them with their workplace and co-workers. Efficient onboarding pays off with higher morale, quicker productivity and a more stable workforce.
Go Beyond Onboarding Checklists
So, what does it mean to onboard well? There are hundreds of articles about onboarding but most focus on the mechanics, providing a laundry list of tasks in a series of checklists that give the illusion that onboarding is a cookie cutter, repeatable process driven by tasks.
Instead, onboarding is a critical process that can affect your corporate culture, productivity and morale. It is about more than just the new hire. You need to do it right. Checklists can help make the process more disciplined and onboarding systems can improve efficiency.
This guide breaks down the onboarding process into several key focus areas to guide your onboarding activities. It also includes some checklists, and strongly recommends you develop your own checklists to increase your odds of success with each candidate.
Focus 1: Make a Good Hire
Onboarding is only as good as the hire itself. Make sure you follow a strong process for hiring. This includes everything from creating a detailed job description to strategic prescreening, job posting, and making a selection.
A good hire will meet the job requirements and fit your culture. Make sure your team evaluates candidate and provides feedback in a way that allows you to have confidence in your selection.
Applicant tracking systems (ATS) can help organize and amplify your hiring efforts. These systems provide templates, workflows, and shortcuts for creating and posting jobs, gathering candidate applications and evaluating interview feedback. They eliminate paper and speed the hiring process while reducing the time and effort for all involved in the hiring process.
Focus 2: Validate Candidate Background and Ability to Work
Once your selection is made, it’s time to verify eligibility to work. Now is the time to release the candidate if there are any surprises. Do a thorough background check.
- Call references. If you haven’t done so yet, check the references provided by your candidate. Use a standardized questionnaire to ensure that you conform to rules and gather feedback in a consistent manner. Or better yet, use an applicant tracking system to automate this step by triggering an email to the references.
- Verify qualifications. If there are absolute requirements like holding a valid driver’s license, make sure you get independent confirmation. This can be part of a background check service.
- Run a background check. The easiest and fastest way to do this is to use a professional service. Make this part of your standard onboarding process to be thorough.
- Check social media. Review top social media platforms to see if there are any red flags to indicate you need further discussion with the candidate.
- Drug test. Many organizations require drug testing prior to employment because of potential workplace liability. Use a professional service to conduct this independent testing.
Applicant tracking and onboarding systems can streamline this essential process through checklists and automation.
Focus 3: Leverage Federal, State, Local Incentives and Programs
Once the candidate makes it past background checks and drug testing, it is time to make an offer. You have done everything you can to ensure that the candidate is a good match for your need. Now is a good time to see if your company is eligible for a tax credit if you hire the candidate.
Work Opportunity Tax Credit
The federal Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) program is designed to give companies incentives for hiring certain target groups as a way to reduce unemployment. WOTC targeted groups include certain recipients of TANF, veterans, disabled veterans and felons.
To start the process, be sure to have the candidate fill out the relevant forms on or before the offer date. You will also have to file all paperwork within the first 28 days.
WOTC Forms include:
Your tax credit can be in the thousands per qualified employee, so filling out the paperwork is certainly worth the effort. Be sure to include it in your onboarding process. You will also need to track hours worked, as there is a minimum for eligibility and an escalation to a maximum.
Don’t leave money on the table. Ask all your candidates to fill out form 8850. If the forms handling process is too burdensome for you, look for an outsourcer like Efficient Hire. They can manage the entire filing, tracking and reporting process for you for a percentage of your credit. You only pay if you receive the credit.
Other Federal, State and Local Hiring Incentive Programs
There may also be other federal, state and local programs that provide incentives for hiring. Make sure you are well aware and include them in your onboarding efforts up front. Examples include state point of hire credits, federal Indian credit, and the Georgia job tax credit.
Focus 4: Payroll and Benefits Readiness (between Offer and Hire Dates)
The goal of payroll and benefits readiness is a smooth first day on the job without all the paperwork hassles. Make a list of everything you need from the new hire related to payroll and benefits. Use automation to gather as much of this data as you can.
It is in everyone’s interest to get payroll set up ahead of the start date. Be sure to consult legal counsel regarding any compliance issue created by onboarding activities performed off-the-clock prior to report date.
Common forms and details that new hires complete include:
- Federal W4 Form
- Federal I9 Form
- State withholding forms
- Direct deposit details and authorization
- Emergency contact
On the hiring side, payroll details include:
- Employee details including social security number
- Job assignment
- Employee ID
- Offer Date
- Hire Date
For example, applicant tracking software can help you make the transition to onboarding by collecting and storing important candidate information such as name and contact information. Fully-integrated applicant tracking can deliver this information to your onboarding system so that you don’t have to re-enter or track this information separately. It may seem trivial, but it is helpful, saves time, and provides a chain of custody (so to speak) of information on your candidate all the way back to the receipt of their resume.
Time tracking is a critical element of payroll readiness. Timekeeping systems make it easy to track employee work hours, design schedules, accrue time off and manage requests, approve time cards, job cost and more. With all the compliance issues related to workforce management, modern timekeeping makes sense for every organization.
Add your new hire to your timekeeping system, with a schedule beginning on the report date. Your new hire will then be able to clock in at the beginning of their first day on the job. The data from your timekeeping system can then feed into the payroll system for payment of wages earned in the first pay period.
Remote Data Gathering
Your goal should be to have new hires complete all payroll and benefits related forms prior to reporting for work on Day 1. Make this something that the new hire can complete remotely. Let them work from their own device and at their own pace. This makes it more convenient for everyone, and more likely that the new hire has access to the right documentation to fill out the various forms.
Your candidate should be able to log into an employee portal and see a list of documents that need to be completed prior to their first day. It helps to provide a checklist, so they can track their progress. Checklists also provide you with alerts and reporting that help you measure the onboarding process and see where follow-up needs to occur. Checklists can also save time when onboarding multiple new employees at once.
Mobile access can make this process much more efficient. Allow documents to be electronically signed and look for onboarding that tracks engagement. Allowing new employees to use their mobile device also comes in handy when you need them to take a photo of their driver’s license (for example) and upload for your records. Questionnaires can help you measure comprehension and helps establish a basis for performance reviews and even formal reprimand.
Some benefits are immediately available while others become available after time on the job. Share as much information as you can early on and consider having the new hire to fill out forms ahead of eligibility, if practical. This may accelerate the enrollment process once the new hire is eligible.
Benefit forms may include:
- Healthcare enrollment
- Life insurance
- Health savings account
- Retirement plans
- Disability insurance
Focus 5: Workspace Readiness, Space Allocation and Technology Provisioning (before Day 1)
If your new hire will have an assigned space, assign it now. Prep the space with the various technology and supplies needed on day one. These may include:
- Phone extension
- Email address
- Network connection
- Software and apps passwords
- Paper, pens, and other office supplies
If your new hire works in a shared space, you may need:
- Network connection
- Pen, paper, and other supplies
The goal here is to have the work environment ready day one so the employee can start contributing immediately, whatever their job.
Using an employee onboarding system can help streamline these activities by assigning each task to the individual responsible. Adding reminders will ensure that nothing slips through the cracks.
Day One Planning to Ensure a Good Experience for All
Make a list of everything that should happen on day one. Think about day one from the perspective of the new hire, hiring manager, and co-workers. This is the beginning of a successful onboarding program.
- Supply room
- Door entry
- Fire alarms
- Fire extinguishers
- Workplace hazards
- Emergency exits
- Team introductions
- Email/collaboration tool introductions
Every workplace is different. Build the right list for your organization with the goal of smooth introduction to the workplace. Make it a knock-out day one!
Focus 6: Compliance and Alignment (between Offer and End of First Week, Ongoing)
Policies and procedures are really important. Be clear. This is about compliance, clarification, culture and connection—what SHRM calls the 4 Cs.
Every new hire should receive a copy of the employee handbook and any other policies and procedures not included in the handbook and relevant to their job.
- Employee handbook
- PTO policy
- Sick leave policy
- Expense reimbursement policy
- Bonus plan
- At-will employee contract
Make sure your new hire understands formal protocol for things like legal representation, press representation, authorizations, approvals, chain of command and other organizational authority.
Get them familiar with emergency protocol, too; fire escape plans, emergency plans, etc.
An employee onboarding system can automatically attach items listed above as a standard to all new employees, which can easily be accessed via the employee portal at any time.
Focus 7: Engagement and Fit
The most critical function of onboarding is equipping the new hire with the tools necessary to be a successful contributor to the organization. The peak of activity is at the front-end, when the employee is added to systems like payroll, offered benefits, allocated space, and informed of rules and operating practices.
Beyond the initial flurry of activity lie two related and very serious success factors—engagement and fit. New hires need to integrate into the organization—to become part of the whole and contribute their unique value without subordinating their individuality.
You can foster initial engagement by activities such as:
- Introducing the new hire to immediate co-workers
- Notifying all employees and welcoming the new hire via email or portal
- Inviting the new hire to company social events like lunch-and-learn and birthday celebrations
- Give new hires an option to provide some personal tidbits like hobbies, associations, and favorite cartoon character to stimulate conversation
- Assign the new hire a clear, short-term project to focus energy and demonstrate competence
Mentoring and Shadowing Programs
Another way to foster early engagement is through mentoring for new hires. Mentoring programs can be highly effective in connecting new hires to their jobs and co-workers. They can also provide a sense of long-term opportunity for growth. Similarly, shadowing programs can be helpful in learning jobs on-the-go, which can be very effective in retail, restaurant, repair, manufacturing and other environments.
Just be careful not to go overboard on mentoring. New hires need a sense of autonomy and contribution, and current employees need to feel that they are on track to achieve their own objectives. If you offer a mentoring program, be sure to establish boundaries, set goals, and evaluate effectiveness for both mentor and mentored.
Shadowing is a short-term program. Mentoring, however, can be continued over much longer time periods. If you choose to keep it going, make sure you establish goals for both mentor and mentored and revisit on a regular basis.
Performance reviews should be regular and two-directional across the course of the first year of employment. These reviews help the hiring manager, HR and the new hire measure the new hire’s achievements as well as identify areas of improvement for everyone involved. They can be as simple as a checklist for discussion or more formal.
Frequency for performance reviews varies by job and industry but commonly starts with day 1 and week 1, followed by monthly and eventually moves to annually. These reviews are an opportunity to build rapport and adjust the onboarding process to suit individual needs. Set an expectation that new hires are encouraged and even expected to gallop out of the gate.
Organizational Fit and Cultural Fit
Fit is a key factor in long-term success for both you and the new hire. This factor should be considered long before onboarding. One of the very first steps of the hiring process has to be a clear understanding of organizational need that is translated into a job description.
Most employers have budgeting and requisitioning processes that help ensure that there is a true organizational need for the new hire. Well written job descriptions and a good screening and interview process help ensure that the new hire is an organizational fit. Put that work in during the hiring process and you have a much better chance that the new hire fits in. Take the organizational fit into consideration during the onboarding process as well to help the new hire understand clearly their role in the overall success of the company.
Cultural fit can be more difficult and nuanced. Introduce the culture early and often, and don’t expect a new hire to be a change agent. This rarely works and usually ends badly.
Keep the Good. Lose the Bad.
Work hard to keep your good hires as part of the organization. The cost to replace and the loss of momentum is steep.
Bad hires, though, are best lost early. Identify mistakes early. If you make an error in hiring, correct it early. Keeping an employee who is not a fit causes bigger problems. Some companies incorporate a quit now bonus into the onboarding process as a check against bad hiring decisions. If all else fails, fire fast!
Thinking about hiring summer interns? A good internship program is a win-win. The interns can apply their schooling in a real world environment. They can start networking with professionals in their chosen industry. You can establish relationships with potential future hires. The managers that supervise the interns can improve training and mentoring skills.
What Is An Internship?
An internship is a structured learning experience for a college student. Internships typically last three months and may be part-time or full-time. Interns may be paid a wage or earn course credit. Unpaid internships are becoming less common in the United States. This is because employment laws require that interns be paid a wage in most situations.
An intern is closely supervised by a professional who is working in the field. An internship should increase professional and academic experience. It should develop hard and soft skills. It may lead to future employment with the company.
As a structured program, it should have specific educational goals, a timeline for completion, and performance benchmarks.
It’s important to understand that summer interns are not temps or volunteers.
How Can Summer Interns Benefit Your Company?
An internship program can be a key component of your long-term hiring strategy. Hiring summer interns allows you to evaluate potential future employees. And you’ll have extra hands without a long-term commitment. They can help you sustain productivity while your employees are taking vacations.
Interns shake things up with a fresh perspective. They bring energy and enthusiasm. You can learn from them as well. They possess the latest academic knowledge in your field.
How Do You Create An Internship Program?
Find meaningful projects that are sufficiently challenging. Don’t relegate the intern to hours of filing or similar tasks. Colleges advise that busy work be limited to less than twenty percent of work hours.
Determine needs: Which teams need help? What specific projects will the interns work on? What are the timelines for the projects?
Remember that you are selling your company. If you find a potential superstar, they aren’t going to be impressed with running errands. Or an unstructured program. The point is for the intern to have a trial run of an actual job role in their field of study. If you have weeks of filing that needs to get done, a temp would be a better choice.
Train Intern Supervisors
Decide who will supervise the interns. Make sure they understand what’s required. Document this as part of your overall internship program. You probably want an additional person to evaluate the interns’ performance.
Beware of Unpaid Internships
Unpaid internships have strict legal requirements. It’s better to pay your interns. Besides, there is stiff competition for top candidates. Even if you meet the requirements for an unpaid position, you may not have any applicants.
Identify Schools And Apply
Decide which schools you want to source from. Contact the careers offices for the necessary forms and requirements. You may have missed the deadline for this summer, but you will be prepared for next year.
Creating Job Descriptions For Intern Positions
Even though it’s a temporary stint, a good job description is essential. An internship program is only successful if you find the right interns. As with all positions, create a highly detailed description. Specify the length of assignment and total number of hours per week.
Don’t neglect to include the negative factors. If the schedule is not flexible, for example. If there are surprises, the intern may quit early. Then it will have been a waste of time and money for everyone involved. It will also reflect poorly on your company.
List the documentation required for application. You may want a transcript in addition to a resume.
ApplicantStack Simplifies Internship Programs
ApplicantStack has tools that make it easy to hire summer interns.
Interns expect efficient, mobile-friendly job application processes. Remember, today’s college students grew up performing every conceivable task with their smartphone. You can’t compete for top intern talent if you have an outdated recruiting interface.
If you haven’t automated your hiring processes, there’s never been a better time. Cloud-based systems like ApplicantStack Recruit are easy to use and set up. They are not only affordable, they provide an ongoing ROI comparable to other top business software.
This is the final post in our How To Hire Your Next Employee: The Ultimate Guide.
In today’s post, we describe how to hire with ApplicantStack. Hiring is the hand-off point between the applicant tracking process and the onboarding workflow.
Before we continue, let’s review where we are in the process:
- Create a Job Description
- Prescreening Preparation
- Post Job to Job Boards
- Candidate Scoring
- Schedule Interviews
- Collect Team Feedback
- Making a Selection
- Extending a Job Offer
- Hiring Your Next Employee
Hiring simply means the applicant accepted your offer of employment. They are now a lucky member of your team. Congratulations!
From Job Description to Hire With ApplicantStack Applicant Tracking Software
First, we created a precise job description. We performed prescreening preparation by defining scoring criteria. As part of this process, we created a filtering questionnaire. The questionnaire included knockout questions that eliminated a slew of candidates before we wasted any time evaluating them.
After that, we posted the job to job boards, social media, and our careers page. The applications started coming in. ApplicantStack gathered the applicants into a database. We could see how many we had in real time. We could see which job board each applicant came from. The system filtered and sorted the applicants based on our criteria. Note that we hadn’t read even one resume at that point.
Automated Applicant Scoring
ApplicantStack scored each applicant and ordered them by their scores. We could see our top candidates throughout the process.
Have you noticed that we haven’t done any manual data entry? Each applicant entered their information in the initial application. ApplicantStack imported the data into the candidate profile and everywhere else it needed to go.
ApplicantStack has been communicating with each applicant throughout the process using email templates we created. Each applicant knew exactly when their application was received. If they were knocked out during the questionnaire, the system sent them a prompt, tactful notification.
After that, ApplicantStack simplified scheduling interviews. Our hiring team conducted the interviews. We gathered hiring team feedback.
ApplicantStack Helped Us Find The Ideal Employee
Then, we made a hiring selection with confidence. Just to be sure, we confirmed our decision with background and reference checks. Then we sent a professional, branded offer letter.
ApplicantStack Ensured a Successful Hiring Decision
Our next employee accepted our offer! This is what we do in the ApplicantStack dashboard for this step:
You can celebrate now!
But not for long. You’ve got a lot of work to do.
This transition is the first step in the onboarding process. It’s vital to communicate next steps effectively.
Why Onboarding Can Make or Break Your Company
Why is it essential to get the handoff from hire to onboarding right?
The quality of onboarding influences everything that comes next.
If your hiring process was effective, your new hire starts with high expectations. They are eager to dive in. Effective onboarding meets the expectations of an employee who experienced an exceptional recruiting process.
- Is structured
- Is personal
- Establishes loyalty
- Helps the new hire be successful
- Improves collective team morale
What is Poor Onboarding?
There is an epidemic of poor onboarding in companies of all shapes and sizes. Read through these and see if they sound familiar.
- The new hire enters an atmosphere of confusion or apathy
- No one takes ownership of the onboarding process
- The process is impersonal
- HR bombards the new hire with paperwork
- The manager doesn’t communicate expectations
- The new hire doesn’t receive enough training
When a new hire experiences haphazard onboarding, they start questioning their decision to take the job. They wonder if they have a future at your company. This belief can be impossible to change.
U.S. Employers Don’t Take Onboarding Seriously
The Aberdeen Group (a market research firm) reports sobering statistics about the state of onboarding:
- 31% of workers have quit a job after less than 6 months
- 53% of employees said they could do their job better with improved training
- Only 32% of employers have a formal onboarding program
- 56% of self-labeled ‘disengaged’ employees said they got poor training or no training at all
- 17.5% of employees said they didn’t understand what was expected of them until they had worked 90 days or more
Distinguish Your Company With First-Class Onboarding
The good news? The overall sad state of onboarding presents an opportunity for you. You can create a superior onboarding process with SwipeClock WorkforceHUB. WorkforceHUB is a unified Human Resources portal that manages the entire employee life cycle.
Exceptional onboarding will be an important competitive advantage. Your secret weapon for business success. The benefits will compound over time.
Thanks For Your Interest in SwipeClock ApplicantStack
We hope you have enjoyed our series How To Hire Your Next Employee: The Ultimate Guide.
We are working on our next Human Resources series: How To Onboard Your Next Employee: The Ultimate Guide. It will also include a comprehensive whitepaper, videos, blog posts, and a handy infographic.
Take a look at this entire series as an infographic!
Onboarding a new employee can be quite challenging and time-consuming. Every phase of the employee onboarding process is important, so make sure to have a new hire checklist to onboard your new employee. You can use the following outline as a guide, however, every organization will have its own unique requirements. These tasks will need to be adjusted for the type of employment (full time, part time, seasonal), but having an initial, general list will provide a good starting point for different positions. We have outlined a new employee onboarding checklist to make it less daunting.
Create a list of tasks that new employees will need to complete and that current team members will need to work on/setup prior to the new employees first day. Example tasks to put on new hire checklist could include, but are not limited to:
Prepare any State & Federal tax forms that need to be completed. Some of these forms might require input from multiple individuals. Having a system in place where these can be created and completed online can save time and resources. The ability to upload these forms form a library can be beneficial to any busy HR professional.
Having a system in place to easily upload and create fillable forms can make this task much easier.
Prepare any job-related forms that will need to be completed and/or signed by the employee or current team member.
Gather any health insurance forms and benefits information
Identify any computer or other peripheral needs that need to be set up prior to the employee arriving on the first-day
Order any technology equipment
Order phone and create new extension
Obtain a new photo ID
Order business cards
Order any materials/supplies needed by the new employee
Make any arrangements for parking/transportation
Add new employee to relevant email lists
Identify any socialization tasks such as a tour of facilities or welcome lunch/meeting
Put together any supporting documents and links to any videos. These should be items that do not require any input or signatures. Example supporting documents might be included on a new hire checklist include, but are not limited to:
Welcome message for new employees
Any training material or videos that will need to be watched
Benefit packages to review
Assign tasks from the new employee onboarding checklist to current team members and new hires. An automated process for task reminders is an invaluable tool. Having the ability to set deadlines with reminders will ensure that the tasks will get done. It is also helpful to be able to visually see the progress indicators that show any outstanding tasks.
Assign all tasks to any relevant person with a due date
Order assignments according to time needed to complete tasks and dependencies between tasks
Create email remainders
new hire checklist
Monitor completion of tasks on the
Establish clear communication with the new hire. Having an employee portal to facilitate the new hire checklist can make this much easier. An employee portal can be viewed as their own virtual assistant that can help the onboarding process run smoothly. Here are some items to include when using a portal:
Their manager’s contact information
new hire checklist
List of tasks from the
Any materials that they need to review and/or sign (from Steps 1 & 2) A progress indicator and list of deadlines to help the new hire complete all the tasks
Review your plan and make the necessary tweaks for the next employee. Don’t assume that one new hire checklist is going to fit all employees! Luckily fully-automated tools such as ApplicantStack Onboard allow for on the fly updates and customizations.
Ready to implement your new employee onboarding checklist? Download a copy of our checklist here:
New Employee Onboarding Checklist