Are all new employees in your organization ready for work right away? Do they have everything they need for their job, such as a desk, entry pass and login account? How can your department work with others to make sure onboarding new employees goes smoothly?

In many organizations, the onboarding process can be hard to figure out. One of the reasons for this is that HR, IT and Facility departments tend to work separately. How do you onboard new employees? What is the best way to set up the process of onboarding and offboarding employees? The questions they dealt with, as well as the answers they came up with, are outlined here.

Who is responsible for a smooth onboarding process?

In our experience, it is common that every department takes on their part of the process, but nobody has an overview of the big picture. But this means that IT and Facility managers are often informed last-minute about new employees, which means they have to put other work on hold to get those employees started. The smart thing to do is to appoint one person to be responsible for the process as a whole. It doesn’t matter much who this person is. An HR staff member would make sense, because they have to do much of the work in an onboarding anyway and may not be able to get an overview. In that case another option might be an IT employee, since they often already have access to confidential information.

How do you prevent confusion in the onboarding process when somebody is absent?

“Well, Pete usually handles CRM accounts, but he was off sick.”

The solution is simple: make sure tasks are transferable. Establish which process needs to be followed and communicate this to everyone involved. Some organizations set up job profiles, but this does not always work in practice. There is often simply too many exceptions to the rule. Best practice is to standardize about 80 per cent of the process and keep the rest flexible. That way, there is always room for some improvisation when needed, but there are still some clear rules to follow, and not everything is up in the air.

How do I ensure an employee’s privacy when working with multiple departments?

This is a much-heard concern. And it becomes a bigger issue still if everyone is working out of the same tool. After all, an HR department handles much more confidential information than an IT or facility department, for example concerning employees’ performance and special leave. Usually, this information may only be viewed by HR staff. Usually, however, this should not be a problem. HR knows what is confidential and will not share the information. Sometimes there may be a need to share more information to aid the onboarding process, such as whether a new employee is in possession of a driver’s licence or will get a smartphone. In most cases you can easily share this information without putting privacy at risk, so there is usually no cause for concern.

Which system should be used to manage supplies?

Whether you keep track of assets in a CAFM,  ITSM or HR system, the most important thing is that you choose one source and ensure that other systems can access it. If you are using self-service portals: which system you choose is not that important, as long as customers are offered a single portal where they find answers to all their questions. They can be linked to the right systems at the back-end.

There are always some small things to iron out when collaborating, but desipite that, we think that the benefits of sharing Services far outweigh the small issues that may arise when starting up.