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Digital onboarding for professional training

Innovating in training through digital onboarding

As the labour market is constantly evolving, companies need to implement effective and innovative strategies to improve their recruitment process, as well as the learning path for new employees. In this article, we offer to discover how digital onboarding, coupled with digital tools, facilitates the integration of candidates in addition to revolutionising the learning methods in companies.

digital onboarding

What is digital onboarding?

Digital onboarding is a process (face-to-face or remote) that consists of supervising the arrival of a new employee in a company.

In 2023, several well-known brands such as Cdiscount, Sarenza, Sculpteo, LinkedIn, SeLoger and Blablacar will include an immersive and innovative integration course to their recruitment process to support and facilitate the new candidate’s start.

There is no such thing as a standard onboarding plan, each company adapts its strategy by taking into account various criteria (size of the structure, material and financial means, resources, objectives, etc.).

It is important to note, however, that onboarding is an ongoing process, starting at the time of the recruitment phase and continuing until several months after your new recruit has joined the organisation.

Digital onboarding: the impact of the global health crisis on accelerating digital processes

The COVID-19 health crisis led to a major slowdown in the world economy. The successive confinements, the closure of non-essential businesses and the widespread use of teleworking have made companies very vulnerable and they have had no choice but to adapt quickly to the situation in order to survive.

In 2020, when the labour market has never been so unstable, the number of job offers is collapsing, and budgetary restrictions are in place, some companies are seizing the opportunity to reorganise completely their operations.

Thus, the introduction of remote work for employees has enabled companies to continue their activity despite travel restrictions. The digitisation of training via digital learning platforms has also made it possible to continue to train employees to make them more autonomous and operational and thus maintain the company’s competitiveness in the market. Finally, the adoption of digital onboarding in the recruitment process (virtual interview, remote job application, online training of new recruits, etc.) has enabled companies to continue hiring despite the crisis in order to increase their development, boost their growth and overcome the talent shortage.

How is digital onboarding revolutionising corporate learning methods?

In terms of training, the implementation of a digitalized process, coupled with the integration of new technologies (virtual/augmented reality), is revolutionising learning methods in companies compared to traditional training, in particular:

  • Greater flexibility: new employees have the opportunity to follow a distance-learning course at their own pace and without geographical, time or logistical constraints. In addition, the online training resources are accessible and searchable at any time to allow the candidate to recall essential information. This is an excellent opportunity to invite new recruits to immerse themselves in a continuous learning process throughout their career with the company.
  • Complete customisation of the candidate’s training path: the main advantage of digital tools is that it is possible to materialise any idea in order to create a personalised and tailor-made training path, thus combining the candidate’s needs with the company’s objectives. This will enable the new employee to acquire the knowledge and skills needed for their role within the organisation. For a more innovative, immersive and fun learning experience, the integration of gamification (online quizzes or challenges, serious games, adventure courses using virtual or augmented reality, etc.) can be very beneficial and contribute to increasing motivation, stimulating creativity and improving memorising.
  • Real-time monitoring: e-learning platforms allow managers to monitor the candidate’s progress in real-time, ensuring that the basic concepts essential to the job are well integrated. In addition, real-time monitoring highlights any difficulties or gaps that the candidate may have in certain areas. Once the problem(s) has been identified, managers can set up the necessary measures to help the new recruit gain skills.
  • Financial savings: digitising your new employee’s training path allows the company to make financial savings at all levels (travel, computer equipment, training staff, etc.). You can then reinvested these financial savings in other projects essential to your organisation’s growth (online advertising, content creation, outsourcing of projects, etc.).

Digital onboarding is revolutionising the way companies learn, allowing the new recruit to benefit from an innovative, fun and immersive training programme. The use of digital tools greatly facilitates the integration process, as well as the training of the candidate for the new responsibilities within the organisation.

Which digital integration tools should be used to facilitate digital onboarding?

Implementing a digital onboarding process necessarily requires the use of digital tools to facilitate onboarding and provide a positive, enriching and engaging experience for new recruits:

  • An e-learning platform to train new employees to make them immediately operational. Moreover, integrating gamification into the training programme allows candidates to immerse themselves in the company’s culture, to get familiar with their new learning environment more quickly and to integrate a large amount of essential information in a fun and playful way.
  • A chatbot or digital assistant, to assist new employees in their job. Its permanent availability allows all recurring questions from new recruits to be answered quickly and concisely. In addition, the use of a chatbot ensures the centralisation of information in order to simplify research and offer significant time savings. Its innovative and playful technology improves the company’s image and appeals to the younger generation of workers.
  • Video conferencing software or other audiovisual support (GoogleMeet, MicrosoftTeams, Zoom, etc.), to exchange and plan meetings between the different members of the team without geographical or time constraints. In order for your new recruit to feel fully integrated with the rest of the team, it is essential to plan regular exchanges.
  • Internal communication channels (social networks, instant messaging, mailboxes) to communicate fluidly and instantaneously with the different actors in the company (employees, managers, HR and line managers). This helps to create a social link between the different members of the team, which favours the integration of the new recruit.
  • A collaboration tool (GoogleDrive, Trello, Klaxoon, Advanseez) for internal project management. They facilitate sharing information and documents in real-time, encourage interaction between team members and optimise group work. This is a major advantage allowing the new recruit to become familiar with ongoing projects and to feel more involved in the company’s activities.
  • A human resources (HR) management tool, to manage the life of the company (administrative documents, payroll system, personnel management, recruitment, etc.). A coherent and structured internal management contributes to improving the integration experience of the new recruit within the company.
  • A survey tool or online questionnaire, the main objective of which is to collect the candidate’s testimonial following their arrival at the company. It is an excellent way for recruiters to identify the needs and expectations of the new recruit, as well as to highlight any difficulties encountered during the onboarding process (communication problems, difficulty adapting, lack of understanding of company procedures, etc.). In addition, you can use the survey to assess the level of knowledge and skills of new employees with the possibility to offer a customised, personalised and adapted training plan.

Innovation and evolutionary perspective of digital onboarding

In the digital age, it is likely that the onboarding process within companies will evolve with the rise of digital tools and artificial intelligence (AI).

Thus, in order to continue to recruit and develop new talents, companies will need to be adaptable by keeping up to date with technological advances and incorporating them into their strategy.

In the field of recruitment and training of new recruits, the use of virtual or augmented reality (e.g. creation of a virtual meeting or training room), combined with artificial intelligence, will make it possible to offer increasingly immersive and interactive onboarding and learning experiences in order to prepare and facilitate the candidate’s entry into the job.