Setting the Stage for Successful Onboarding

Claudine in Durham

Claudine Dusablon

Savas Labs employee welcome box with a t-shirt, post card, tumblr, and stickers

As a remote-first organization, we understand the importance of an intentional and personalized onboarding program for new employees to ensure long-term success and retention. From their first day throughout their first year, a comprehensive onboarding program fosters a positive and productive work environment.

What to expect

It begins with a structured onboarding plan customized to their role. Their onboarding plan includes company onboarding sessions, department onboarding, and cross-functional team introductions. 

Company onboarding sessions introduce the company’s culture and values and help our new employees understand the organizational culture and dynamics, our weekly routine, and expectations around communication and response time.

Department onboarding includes walking through workflows, processes, and tools; introductions to clients and projects; and shadowing calls and meetings so our new hires have a better understanding of their role, their teams, and the business

Cross-functional team introductions walk new team members through each discipline within the organization led by key subject matter experts to encourage open communication and collaboration.

We try to have your first day during our company status meeting, typically on a Monday. Our Monday Morning Meeting, or MMM, is our way of easing into the week—it’s when we share highlights and lowlights of our last two weeks, announcements, business development efforts, and any project management PSAs. Our new teammate is introduced to everyone by their manager at the top of the meeting and given the floor to say ‘Hi’ while everyone sends emoji greetings 🎉👏💖👋

You’re then introduced to your first agency friend, through an onboarding buddy program we are trialing. Your onboarding buddy will provide initial guidance and help you navigate your new workplace and team dynamics

The first day includes your first 1:1 meeting with your manager to review your job description and discuss responsibilities, expectations, and performance metrics.

We organize team-building activities to foster camaraderie and build strong working relationships. These activities range from Lunch Bunch to Skillshares to Team Game Time to bi-annual retreats.

To provide ongoing feedback and support, managers conduct regular one-on-one meetings to provide feedback, address concerns, and track progress. Outside of these, we also conduct a one-month check-in, a three-month check-in, a 6-month review, and a one-year review.

In order to improve our onboarding program, we seek input from our new teammates about their onboarding experience and use it to refine the process for future hires.

Final thoughts

A well-designed onboarding process sets the stage for a successful and fulfilling career for our new employees. By providing a structured and supportive introduction to the organization, our goal is to provide you with the tools you need to excel in your role and demonstrate our commitment to your professional growth and success.