It’s a fact of business that paperwork is almost never-ending. When onboarding a new hire, there’s a lengthy process involved. You need to vet the candidate, assess their compatibility, and perform backgrounds checks.
On top of this, there’s getting them onto the payroll and into the company’s existing structure. Amid all these are legal obligations and making sure everyone understands their job. This means forms, forms, and more forms – which is why you should digitize your new hire forms.
By digitizing, you make everything more convenient and stress-free. The process becomes easier for the employees who need to fill out and access the paperwork. Employers also don’t have to hunt through piles of physical papers and folders.
Everything is accessible and downloadable online and is easy to update. Read our guide below to learn why and how to digitize the onboarding process.
New Hire Forms and Packets
Running a business means dealing with paperwork. Both parties need to be clear about expectations, benefits, rights, and other details. “Winging it” is a bad practice for any business.
For this reason, most employers have developed what’s known as a “new hire packet.” This packet is a bundle of documents that contains all the paperwork and info both parties need. It includes forms the employee has to fill out and sign.
Explanations about how the company operates and job descriptions are also there. Vital info to include here is pay and reporting structures as well. How the different departments work together and who the team leaders are also key.
Ensure the new hire has access to all the contact information they need, including HR. Expectations and benefits should be clearly spelled out in the new hire packet. It should serve as a sort of FAQ for the company and job.
Anything the new hire should know should be available there. This includes insurance and medical benefits and how any bonuses work. Any forms or processes the new hire needs to complete should get accompanied by a detailed guide.
Of course, interviews, calls, and meetings should also be a part of the onboarding process. It’s essential to give the new hire the chance to ask questions upfront and at any point. The packet serves as an accessible resource for the employee to consult.
Digitizing it and the entire process makes things easier.
Why Is It Important and Why Digitize?
There are several reasons you need to be thorough. The first is legal compliance since, as a business, you need to fill out and submit everything. This goes with the second point, which is convenience.
The harder you make onboarding and storing data, the more difficult it will be to fill out everything properly. When it comes time to send documents, you’ll be at risk of making mistakes that carry legal penalties. Digitizing all of your new hire forms and the entire process saves yourself a headache.
Some organizations, for example, accountants who are applying to the CIMA Members in Practice scheme, demand that a DBS Check be completed as a qualification for membership.
Not only is accessing and storing digitized info easier for your day-to-day operations, but your employees will benefit too. The labor market heavily favors employees, so convenience is king. Digitizing makes your company look more modern, professional, and enticing.
No one likes carrying around a work binder or a stack of papers. The ability to pull up everything from the handbook to the contract on their phone gives employees peace of mind. A friction-free digital onboarding process is key to this.
Companies that have a comprehensive and easy onboarding process report less employee turnover. Workers are happier, more efficient, and adjust sooner. They also develop more positive feelings towards the company.
All of this does wonders for morale and productivity. Less turnover also means reduced costs associated with replacing and training workers. Digitizing the process ensures less stress during the transition.
You also make sure new workers have the resources they need to succeed.
Digitizing Data Collection
When dealing with onboarding paperwork, you’ll need to collect information. Much of this will need to get provided by the employee before you verify it. This process of verification is also known as a background check.
The more info you collect, the harder it will be to keep it organized. You never know when you might need to access an employee’s file down the road. You might even need to update things like address or contact info.
The last thing you want is to deal with an unorganized mess every time you open a folder or filing cabinet. Save yourself the hassle by getting good onboarding and new hire software now. It will help you transform your physical onboarding process into an easy and efficient digital one.
For one, you can put your new hire packet into a comprehensive online document. Both parties can access this whenever they need it right from their phones. By giving staff access to their profiles, they can update their personal info.
This saves you staffing resources and lets your HR department do other tasks. You can also store important documents like direct deposit forms, which payroll needs. The IRS needs complete W-4 and I-9 forms within the first 48-hours of a new hire joining the payroll.
Your new hire needs to get paid, and payroll needs to deduct the appropriate amount of taxes. Digitizing all the forms lets payroll do what they need with minimal fuss. It always saves time.
There is so much your employee needs to know, which is why employee orientations are common practice. Going the digital route makes this process even more painless. You can do a lot of it online without attending physical meetings.
Part of what you want to do is give your employees an updated handbook as part of the onboarding package. Going over it with them online and asking if they have any questions is good practice. Make sure the handbook talks about company culture and expectations.
Things like dress code or proper procedure for check-ins and communication are important. Digitizing the handbook makes it easy to access and lets you link to important extra resources. These include safety videos, how to contact HR if there’s an issue, and proper forms and procedures.
Part of the handbook and larger orientation might be to go over the physical layout of the workplace. You can arrange a virtual tour with ease and a discussion of the company structure. All of this info should be available online in easy-to-access forms.
What you should also do during orientation is go over how to fill out new hire forms. You should also demonstrate how to access all the digital resources needed. The new hire should feel welcomed into the company on a personal level, not only through a welcome letter.
Employees will be happier if they feel the company cares about their well-being.
Neat and Tidy Organization
This is the real meat and potatoes of why you should digitize as much of the process as possible. Your employees will give you tons of data, forms, and information. These include emergency contact info, company profile info, and legal paperwork.
Digitizing gives you handy options for when you need to use the data. Not only will all the info get organized and stored online, but it’ll be easy to access. No more opening old file cabinets and rummaging through stacks of folders or papers.
Some of the forms you and the employee fill out need to have copies kept for legal reasons. If you both ever have to produce or fill out another copy of a W-4 or I-9 form, you’ll wish you could check the database with a single keyword.
By digitizing a standardized employee info form, you can find relevant info on any employee. In the case of emergencies, you can find contacts or provide medical info to first responders. Finding this through old paper files is tedious and time-consuming.
Workforce management also becomes easier when you digitize. At a glance, you can see who’s on vacation and for how long or who’s working on what project. It saves you having to send out a slew of emails for minor things or calling unnecessary meetings.
You can also update and revise things with ease. The old way would have meant reprinting an employee’s entire file only to change a phone number.
Why Digitizing New Hire Forms Is a Necessity
In this day and age, it’s impossible to own a business that employs people without mountains of paperwork. When dealing with new hires, you need to meet your legal obligations to the taxman and government. New hire forms need to get filled out, filed away, and accessible in the future.
You also need to ensure new hires feel welcomed and that they have all the info and resources they need. The entire onboarding process is time-consuming and will bury you if you don’t digitize it. Check out our site for more on the best ways to digitize the process to be more efficient and stress-free.