Covid-19 Actually Improved Employee Orientation & Induction

Covid-19 overnight changed a lot of processes and functions, especially within HR. So, it would seem that employee orientation would also take a hit. But a series of interviews that we undertook with people who recently changed organizations proved otherwise!

A year ago, large-scale migration into remote working threw businesses around the world into uncharted territory. We wanted to better understand the impact of work from home on people and people processes. And where better to understand the impact than from people themselves. So, we undertook a series of interviews with people who have changed jobs during the pandemic. And spoke to them on how remote working impacted their onboarding experience, specifically, employee orientation and induction.

This article talks about their induction and orientation and how it impacted their overall onboarding experience. (Read this article to understand the difference between the often interchangeably used terms of Induction, Orientation, Integration, and Onboarding)

The common thread across all our conversations was that the HR and extended onboarding team was supremely efficient and followed a process that put complete focus on the employee experience. They also appreciated the efforts of the IT and Administration teams who collaborated really well with the HR team to ensure their technology and workspace needs were adequately met during their induction and orientation. They raised the bar on Virtual Teaming.

  • 3 out of 4 stated that their induction process more than matched expectations.
  • 83% said that the employee orientation process was superior to their last onboarding. None said it was inferior.

Importantly, 93% of our interviewees expressed that remote working actually helped them efficiently schedule their multiple meetings with team members, stakeholders, leadership, and Human Resources. Employee Orientation meetings that would have taken 2-3 weeks to complete in a physical office, were all done within the first week of their joining. For most of them, their first login had their calendar already populated with these required meetings and catch-ups. As a result, they were onboarded quickly and efficiently. And didn’t need to find people, introduce themselves, or schedule discussions. It was all done for them by the onboarding team! 

They were also able to get to their primary work quicker because of the calendarizing of all these meetings (albeit on a virtual meeting platform). Allowing them to make a better impact in the first few months of their joining. Thereby helping both them and their new organization.

In all these organizations, SOPs and training on administration tools & processes were already enabled online. So organizations that had invested earlier in the digitization of their induction saw their investment yield large returns while allowing for the new employee to learn at their own pace.

For us, the learning is fantastic, but two things stand out:

  1. Remote working requires the HR, IT, and Admin teams to work better together and improve on their processes to provide a fruitful employee experience.
  2. And as a result, they have successfully rewritten the rule book and created efficiency that will outlive the pandemic and become the standard for the organization going forward.

In our current environment, we all could use encouraging news! And so, we are happy to report these positive findings. And congratulate the combined HR, IT, and Admin teams across these organizations for bridging the gap and facilitating their organizations to Grow Limitless. Bravo!


–     All interviewees joined their new organizations after June 1, 2020.

–     Interviewees were all mid-senior level with between 8-25 years of experience

–     Interviewees represented a wide variety of organizations. Ranging from consulting firms, large outsourcing organizations, Big 4 accounting firms, micro-finance startups, IT services, eComm retailers, fashion houses, etc.

–     All interviewees have worked at two or more organizations before their current job.

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[…] Orientation as a process involves generating awareness about organizational processes, guidelines, systems, and policies. All of this to make the employee compliant and understand what needs to be done, how it needs to be done, and why it needs to be done. Obviously, considering the compliance focus, Orientation is a longer process than Induction, more detail-oriented, and far more formal. […]

[…] the pandemic and spoke to them on how remote working impacted their onboarding experience. In a previous article, we wrote about how the process of induction and orientation has become more efficient than before […]

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