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What is Inboarding?

Inboarding is a process by which companies invest in their current employees' continued growth and development. It contrasts with onboarding, which focuses on integrating new hires. Inboarding aims to re-engage, re-train, and re-introduce current employees to new roles, skills, or opportunities within the organization.

By doing so, companies not only retain talent but also boost employee satisfaction, productivity, and loyalty. This practice recognizes that an employee's journey doesn't end after the initial onboarding; it's an ongoing process of learning and advancement.

What is the difference between inboarding and onboarding?

While inboarding and onboarding are crucial for a company's human resources, they serve different purposes. Onboarding programs are designed to help new team members adjust to the company culture and their job roles. It's all about making new hires feel welcomed, understanding job descriptions, and getting familiar with the company's systems and processes.

On the other hand, inboarding focuses on current employees, aiming to improve employee experience and foster career development. The inboarding process is all about investing in inboarding to ensure team members continue to grow, leading to a positive impact on the bottom line.

Why is Inboarding Essential?

When businesses expand, their primary focus isn’t only on recruiting new talent but also ensuring that the existing talent evolves in tandem with organizational goals. Inboarding, spearheaded by HR professionals, is the bridge that connects employees to their potential within the company. Through inboarding, employees get the chance to experience continuous learning, keeping them abreast with both industry trends and the company's shifting needs.

This practice also opens doors for career development. Employees aren’t restricted to their initial roles; they can traverse different responsibilities, known as cross-training, or even transition into new departments. Moreover, one of the most significant impacts of inboarding is the palpable boost in engagement. When employees feel that their growth is a company priority, job satisfaction often skyrockets, leading to improved employee retention and better employee feelings toward the company.

How Does Inboarding Work?

Inboarding, an evolution of the traditional onboarding process, prioritizes continuous learning and professional development within an organization. By focusing on current employees, companies can foster a culture of growth, innovation, and commitment. Here's a look at some of the key components of the inboarding process:

Assess Needs

Before diving into the inboarding strategy, companies must understand what their employees genuinely desire. By conducting regular surveys or one-on-one sessions, organizations can get insights into the kind of growth and learning opportunities their employees are looking for. This step is foundational. Without understanding individual aspirations and skill gaps, the rest of the process might lack direction.

Provide Training

Once you've discerned the needs of your employees, it's time to provide them with the necessary resources. Offering workshops, online courses, or even resources like books can make a big difference. Training should not be a one-time event. Instead, continuous learning opportunities should be integrated into the employee's journey, ensuring they always have the resources they need to upskill.

Encourage Internal Mobility

Internal hires can often bring a fresh perspective. Employees often feel rejuvenated and more engaged when given the chance to explore different roles or departments. Internal mobility ensures that employees are not pigeonholed into one role or department. Instead, they get a chance to explore different facets of the organization, which can be a significant boost for morale and can also lead to discovering untapped talents.

Mentorship Programs

Mentorship can be a game-changer in an employee's career. By pairing junior employees with seasoned professionals, companies create an environment where knowledge transfer happens seamlessly. Mentors provide guidance, share experiences, and help mentees navigate the challenges of their roles. This relationship can be invaluable for professional and personal growth.

Feedback Loops

Successful onboarding and inboarding rely heavily on feedback. Regular check-ins with employees can provide insights into what's working and what's not. This two-way communication ensures that the process remains effective and is always in tune with employees' evolving needs, reinforcing the importance of onboarding best practices.