Even though industry giants such as Microsoft, Meta and Snap have recently announced hiring slowdowns, economic experts say they are not seeing a widespread downturn in the tech job market. On the contrary, information technology (IT) talent remains in high demand. The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics projects employment in computer and IT to grow by 13% between 2020 and 2030. These two fields together are expected to add about 667,600 new jobs.

In May alone, 4.3 million Americans left their jobs in search of better opportunities, and IT candidates in particular, have the ability to be extra discerning about the roles they commit to. Learning leaders need to set aside the headlines and keep their focus on high-demand areas of talent. Amid a shortage of available IT professionals, upskilling and reskilling can help attract high-potential candidates seeking to leverage the opportunity to get a foot in the door and create momentum in their careers. Offering foundational training to candidates while simultaneously expanding the potential talent pool is a way to gain an advantage.

And thanks to The Great Resignation, attracting and retaining qualified candidates has become more challenging — a 2021 survey by Indeed showed that 28% of candidates had ghosted an employer that year, up from 19% the previous year. With this new obstacle to overcome, employers need to adjust their approach and stay nimble to reel in their candidates completely — and reestablish control over learning outcomes. In tight segments of the talent pool, it’s increasingly necessary for employers to establish a good first impression and build a relationship with candidates that can last past a new hire’s start date.

In today’s work environment, a drawn-out, disorganized onboarding process can jeopardize a new hire’s experience with the company. One way to rectify this is to leverage a comprehensive, streamlined technology platform that’s flexible, intuitive and integrated in a new hire training program to help employers meet employee expectations at scale — and not add to the temptation of walking away mid-process.

Difficulties In Onboarding

Learning leaders already have heavy workloads. Using outdated technology can slow down the onboarding process for everyone and can be costly. The typical onboarding process includes an onslaught of documents needing to be read and acknowledged, financial information needing to be processed and set up and compliance tasks needing to be completed. Without a streamlined and automated onboarding solution, documents can easily be lost or forgotten, information can go unprocessed and the overall onboarding timelines can be lengthened excessively.

Providing a Seamless Process

How can employers successfully implement a more seamless, human-centric onboarding process? Today’s integrated customer relationship management (CRM) and applicant tracking systems (ATSs) can automate important key processes and save time. Steps and stages can be configured via automated onboarding workflows specific to each job’s need — with no task- or tab-switching between tasks.

Instead of a clunky, data-intense approach, documentation needs can be streamlined via workflows from eligibility to industry-specific advanced credentials. This technology can help learning leaders find and keep track of documents. It also allows them to keep tabs on the onboarding process for multiple candidates at once, from the moment a resume is submitted to their first deployment — staying up to date with a candidate’s progress at every step of the onboarding process.

Automating the onboarding process also provides the opportunity to sign documentation. This can be fully implemented into an employer’s tech-driven workflow, eliminating wasted time waiting for an in-person signature and confusion among which documents to sign at what time. Forms are easily routed for visibility and approval by all stakeholders who might need to sign off.

Automating checklists can streamline processes by prompting new hires for the right information at the appropriate part of the process. Automated status alerts can also notify when one task is finished and the next is ready for attention. And, if a candidate stalls on providing documentation, employers can gain immediate visibility into the issue — and pivot quickly if they suspect the new hire is a flight risk.

Focusing on What Matters

Automating the onboarding experience can help learning and development (L&D) leaders and their organization focus on creating a memorable and engaging new hire experience. It can help simplify the overwhelming workload for learning leaders, removes outdated technology that requires them to input redundant data entry, improve communication and plug holes that outdated technology can leave wide open. To win this war on talent, employers must shape the onboarding experience around modern candidate expectations, especially in high-demand industries.