How Onboarding Is Affecting Employee Retention


How Onboarding Is Affecting Employee Retention

by | Blog

As a busy facility owner, you need a solid and motivated team behind you to keep the facility rolling. Unfortunately, you are not alone if you’ve experienced a high staff turnover rate. It can be costly, and the competition for skilled and qualified new hires is high too. However, you can find great employees who love working at your treatment center and want to feel fulfilled by their long-term career with you. 

But first…

Why is employee retention so low?

There are many reasons for leaving a job, but the most common reasons we have noticed is lack of benefits or perks, pay, low morale, and inability to progress in their position. Some of these may be out of your control right now at your facility. But, the good news is that these dissatisfactions at work can be addressed and fixed.

How do you build an employee retention plan that works?

With lots of workforce shortages and declining retention rates, it’s essential to keep morale up around the office. Your employee satisfaction is crucial, and it’s why employee retention is important. You have many opportunities to make your facility an enjoyable workplace for everyone.

If you think about employee onboarding in stages, you may find it easier to manage all new hires in stages:

  1. Refine your hiring process and offering as a company
  2. Prepare everything for new employees before they arrive
  3. Provide structure and guidance for their first two weeks
  4. Recognize and encourage routinely
  5. Check-in frequently after their first two weeks.

Start with these five stages to help you build an employee retention plan that works.

Successful Employee Retention = More Time Onboarding Them

Stage 1 –  Retention Starts with the Hiring Process

How to create a job listing that attracts skilled and qualified applicants with employee benefits.

It’s important to care for your patient’s mental and physical well-being at your treatment center. However, it’s equally essential to care for your employee’s well-being. Let current and future employees know that you care by providing excellent work-life balance benefits and opportunities. Addressing health insurance, paid leave options, and amenities will powerfully attract employees, especially against competitive pay rates.

When you’re posting the job listing and hiring for the new position, make sure to include employee benefits like: 

  • Health insurance, dental, and vision options
  • Life and AD&D insurance plans
  • 401(k) and retirement plans
  • Paid Time Off, holidays off, and birthdays off
  • Sick leave and parental leave options
  • Wellness Programs – anxiety & stress management, reimbursement for fitness classes/memberships, or workshops at the office
  • Flexibility and support for a work-life balance
  • Paid lunches, office snacks, or coffee

Think of your employee benefits as incentivized items for your new employees. Especially if your salary range is currently lower when compared to the average, your benefits will be an encouraging factor against the competition.

DID YOU KNOW: Offering insurance, 401K, and/or an HSA can be done at no cost through an Operational Partner? Whether you currently offer these benefits, or it’s been on your radar to offer them, it’s worth exploring to attract and retain talent.

*Keep in mind that it’s more expensive to replace an employee than provide programs, benefits, and care.

Stage 2 – Prepare for the New Employee Ahead of Time

How to build a sustainable employee retention plan with your team.

Your new hires should feel welcome and included starting on their first day. Starting a new job can be exciting and a little nerve-racking. So, help your new team member feel comfortable by preparing your team and taking these steps before their first day.

  • Prepare the new employees’ desk and workspace with supplies and equipment needed.
  • Announce who the new employee is to your team and tell them when they will start. 
  • Take time to communicate and game plan with your team. 
  • Would someone like to give the new employee a tour when they arrive? 
  • Is everyone available for a team lunch on the new employee’s first day?
  • Make sure to introduce yourself when you pass them during their first few weeks.

By encouraging and including your team, they will feel empowered and responsible for taking your new employee under their wing. Allow your group to boost morale and have a leadership role by including them in the new employee journey through their first few weeks.

Stage 3 – Include Structure and Guidance

How to structure their experience and give your new employees recognition during their first two weeks at work.

The first few weeks at a new job can feel overwhelming, so try to pre-schedule their first two weeks to help guide them through the information and processes. Take some time to write down what they need to do and add an estimated time necessary to complete each task.

For example:

  • Training program (~20 hours)
  • Team lunch (1 hour)
  • Orientation (2 hours)
  • HR paperwork, onboarding documents, staff photo, etc. (~3 hours)
  • One-on-one meeting with their manager (3x per week for ~30 minutes)
  • Meeting with each team member to discuss roles and responsibilities (~30-60 minutes per team member)

Once you have your list, you can pre-schedule their first two weeks for a solid onboarding structure. You can share this schedule with your team so they better understand their expectations during the onboarding process. 

*Remember that employee retention and development is for all employees, whether it’s their first day or 5th year.

After their schedule and structure for the first two weeks are complete, you are ready for the new employee to start!

Stage 4 – Continue Employee Retention with Recognition and Encouragement

How to motivate and encourage employees for better retention long-term.

All employees want to feel like their work matters, and they are making a positive impact. So, make sure to take the time and recognize those good behaviors, starting with their first day.

  • Tell them how happy you are to have them on the team. 
  • Point out that their positive attitude or personality is contagious and a great example within the team.
  • Make them feel welcome by including them in lunches or small chats around the office.
  • Let them know that you see their potential at the facility and the efforts they have made up until that point.
  • Ensure they know three people they can come to with concerns or questions. (i.e., a trusted co-worker, a manager, and the HR manager)

These moments of praise and encouragement help make new or existing employees feel like management cares about them, and they belong here. It means a lot to have your superior cheering you on, especially during those first two weeks of employment.

Stage 5 – Maintain Retention Plans Long-Term

How to ask the right questions and support an employee retention plan for your team and treatment center.

A great way to maintain employee retention is by checking in with employees often. You can build a quick check-in survey or list of questions to ask your new hire in the first two weeks and beyond.

During a one-on-one meeting, ask them:

  • What went well this week?
  • What didn’t go well?
  • Were you missing information or instructions for anything?
  • How do you feel about the workload?
  • How far along are you on (orientation, training, meeting with team members, etc.)
  • Do you have any questions for me?

Use this time to gain honest feedback and build trust between you and your new employee. They will feel happy that you care and help you iron out any kinks in their work structure or duties.

When using these five employee retention stages, you’d be surprised how sustainable and successful your employee retention plan will become. This process will help you address employee concerns, create a supportive workplace, and grow current employee development. Furthermore, your treatment center will thrive with employees that love their work and happy patients getting the best care possible.


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