How to Make Onboarding New Users Just a Little Easier

5/5 - (1 vote)
When you think of onboarding new users, you likely think about capturing new leads or signing up new customers for your service or products. You may have a whole bag of tricks up your sleeve about how to attract new leads and sales or how to make the onboarding process easier so that you attract and retain more customers and leads. However, you may not be thinking of a very important segment for onboarding: The employees you need to sign up for new training or continuing education opportunities. It’s just as important to make the onboarding process easy for them – only instead of increased sales, you are getting improved productivity, greater buy-in for your new processes, and improved efficiency. Here are a few things you can do to make signing up those new users and setting them on their way just a little easier:

Create a Compelling Value Proposition So They Will Want to Move Forward

Just like when you are onboarding new users for a product, you have to come up with a compelling value proposition for your employees. OK, so they kind of have to sign up because you are the boss and you told them to do it. But you should know by now that forcing anything is not the best way to get success. If you want employees to really engage with and be enthusiastic about the new tools or processes, you need to convince them of the need first, and show them what the benefit will be to them. You can also create incentives at the onboarding phase. For example, you could offer a prize or a bonus to the first employees to sign up successfully or to complete the introductory tutorial. You’ll find that employees are much quicker about signing up, and they’ll be more enthusiastic about doing so.

Define a Clear Path to Completion So They Know What to Expect

Signing up for a new service, a new program, or a new account can be a dreaded event – mostly because we don’t know what to expect. We may worry that the sign-up process will drag on for too long, taking up too much of our precious little time, and so we avoid the process altogether. You don’t want this happening with your employees. You don’t want them avoiding the new training or program, and you don’t want them signing up begrudgingly when they do get around to it. Make this process a little less mysterious and cumbersome by defining a clear path to completion right at the start so that employees know what to expect. They will see that the process for onboarding new users is an easy one that won’t take up much of their time or that won’t be complicated or frustrating. They will know exactly what steps are involved and how long they will take.

Simplify the Process as Much as Possible to Make it Easy and Inviting

The sign-up phase for a new program is just the beginning. If it’s not easy and inviting, then employees have no reason to believe the rest of the program will be, and they will do what they can to avoid it. Make this phase as easy as possible. You can start simplifying the process by eliminating any unnecessary steps and by getting rid of requirements for unnecessary or redundant data. For example, do you really need to know their middle name? Or do you need to really need to ask them to confirm their email with a text in addition to providing security questions and doing a captcha? Get the information you need and make the process as secure as possible when onboarding new users, but make the process as simple as possible to avoid taxing your employees’ time or patience.

Provide Contextual Tutorials to Help Employees Get More Familiar with the System as Quickly as Possible

Any time that a new system is being introduced, the new users will need as much education and support as possible to learn how to use it and to feel comfortable with it. You can do this for your employees by providing contextual tutorials that help them through every aspect of the new system, starting with the sign-up process. Each tutorial should be designed for a specific step or question as part of the process for onboarding new users. For example, you might have a tutorial that talks about choosing appropriate security questions, or you might have a tutorial that shows how to find the settings for customizing a profile. Link the tutorials to words or help bubbles next to the area where each step must be completed. Also include the tutorials in a help section or a guide that you send out to employees. You should also provide guided interactions where possible, include in person and through step-by-step tutorials that play while employees go through the process.

Tailor the Experience Where Possible to Make Employees Feel More Engaged with the Process

No one wants to feel like a cog in the machine of onboarding new users. They want to feel like they have some control in the process, and giving them some will make them feel more engaged and enthusiastic about the process. An easy way to tailor the experience is to allow employees to customize their dashboards or profiles. They might be able to choose the front type or size, background colors, or even the way the information appears on the screen. You can take the customization options a bit further by allowing them to create avatars or upload photos to identify themselves to other users.

Provide Ongoing Email Education and Support for When Questions Arise

You never know when questions will arise for employees. When you are onboarding new users, that might not always be at the initial sign-up stages. Employees might have a question that occurs to them later, or they might realize they made a mistake and want to correct it. Providing ongoing email education and support will ensure that employees get the answers they need, no matter when those questions arise. Create an automated email series with tutorials and answers to common questions. Then send out regular reminders that support is available whenever it is needed. Make sure that employees have a variety of options for making contact.

Use the Right Software Tools to Oversee Your Change Process and Employee Training

No matter how easy you make the sign-up process for onboarding new users or the change process in general, there are going to be so many moving parts that it can be easy to make mistakes and undercut your own goals. You need a software solution like WalkMe to help you manage it all. WalkMe helps you to oversee every element of your change model, including training employees on new equipment and software. You can use the software to keep track of who has signed up for the training, who is already using the new systems, and so on. The software will also help you identify problems early in the process, such as when training employees, so you can make corrections as quickly as possible so that you don’t waste time or money. Contact us today to learn more about WalkMe or to request a demonstration.
Jason is the Lead Author & Editor of TrainingStation Blog. Jason established the Training Station blog to create a source for news and discussion about some of the issues, challenges, news, and ideas relating to training, learning and development.