New Employee Onboarding: Measuring Training Satisfaction

 
Summary

A large packaged goods company that employs tens of thousands of employees in the United States on their frontline workforce was experiencing very high turnover (40%-50%). The company was implementing new training methods in an effort to better understand employee engagement with the onboarding process and to improve employee retention. The new training program occurred during a four-week, multi-phase onboarding process in which several hundred new hires participated. Phase one of training was centralized location training, and phase two was in-field/on-the-job training.

Strategic Issues

Reducing employee turnover is an important initiative for all companies. The cost to recruit, hire, and train an employee can be twice the cost of an employee’s salary.

Research Objectives

The overarching objective was to help optimize the onboarding process and reduce turnover. Companion objectives were to determine which areas of the onboarding process were considered to be most helpful and which were least helpful, to discover areas that may be in need of improvement or that may need to be removed from the onboarding process, and to uncover potential issues with on-the-job trainers at a regional level.

Research Design and Methods

The research was conducted in two phases; surveying the new employees during the week 1 centralized training and then again during the on-the-job, in-field training.

During phase 1 of centralized training, new employees were instructed to opt in via text message to participate in surveys about the training process. A series of scheduled text messages containing survey links were then sent to all employees who opted in. Each survey pertained to different aspects of the training week they just completed.

Phase 2 survey invitations were text out 30 days after the new employees initial opt-in to the phase one survey. Only employees who had opted in during week 1 of their training were invited to take the on-the-job training survey. Survey topics pertained to satisfaction with different parts of OTJ Training.

Employees who completed surveys for all training phases were entered into a drawing for a cash prize.

Results

Employees were able to provide feedback within days of completing each phase of training. The research helped to identify several areas that employees struggled with during training, as well as identify regional locations that were underperforming. The company was able to make adjustments for future training classes. The onboarding surveys were implemented as a permanent piece of company training and are still used so that the company can continue to measure and improve its processes and retention.

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