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Why Dealership Employee Onboarding Should be Like Delivering a Vehicle

To drive success at your dealership, it’s critical to treat your candidates and employees like customers. From the moment job seekers consider your open roles, your team needs to sell top talent on the opportunity joining your team presents – in the same way you sell your vehicles to prospective customers. 
Keeping top talent engaged doesn’t end once new employees accept job offers – just as the customer experience doesn’t end as soon as a customer fills out the paperwork to purchase a car. Your team should think of dealership employee onboarding as similar to vehicle delivery – you want new employees to be just excited about getting started on your team as new customers are driving out of your lot with their vehicles.

On the customer side, a great delivery experience will lead to repeat business – for service and other vehicles down the road – while a top-notch dealership employee onboarding experience will boost employee engagement and productivity. 
How can your team offer the best possible dealership employee onboarding experience? We’ve outlined some key steps you should take below. 

Complete Digital Onboarding Before Day One 

In today’s tight labor market, most job seekers are already employed. This means many of your new hires have to give their previous employers two weeks notice before starting on your team. And during this period between signing an offer letter and walking into your dealership on the first day, there’s plenty of time for new hires to get ahead with onboarding. Sending onboarding documents digitally will help keep your new hires engaged and excited to get started, and will save your HR team a significant amount of time once the employee gets started. 
No new employee wants to spend the majority of their first day in the HR office filling out paperwork – doing so will cause their initial excitement about the job to wear off early on. Completing your dealership employee onboarding digitally enables new employees to start contributing to your dealership on the first day, rather than focusing on required paperwork. And it saves your HR team from repeating the same onboarding tasks each time a new employee is hired.
Onboarding tasks that can be completed before the first day include: filling out direct deposit information for automated payroll, completing tax forms, filling out benefits paperwork and signing the employee handbook. When employees dive into your employee handbook before they even get started, they’ll get a chance to learn more about your dealership culture and core values, making them even more eager to start working for your team.

Streamline Payroll and Other HR-Related Tasks 

Kicking off with onboarding and during each employee’s time at your company, your team needs to have the right technology and processes in place to make HR-related tasks as user-friendly as possible. If employees face difficulties tracking down their pay stubs, or lose track of how many systems they need to log into – such as payroll, benefits, time and attendance and countless other systems – they might get frustrated with your dealership and seek other job opportunities. 
By partnering with the right hiring, payroll and employee benefits provider, your dealership can make HR processes seamless, keeping employees engaged and saving time that can be spent on their day-to-day responsibilities. You can also immediately start onboarding as soon as each new employee accepts the offer, with a simple connection between your hiring platform and other HR systems. 

Have a Set Schedule for the First Day

Many employers make the mistake of not being fully prepared for a new hire’s first day. And the last thing you want on an employee’s first day is to have the new hire show up and not know what to do. The new hire might walk into your dealership only to realize your team forgot he or she is starting that day. Or your team might be well aware of the new employee’s first day, but still be scrambling to get any necessary equipment together for the employee to get started on the job. 
Both of the scenarios above and any similar instances will lead to a bad first impression for new employees. Think of what would happen if a customer arrived at your dealership at a scheduled pick up time only to find out his or her vehicle isn’t ready to drive off the lot. 
Rather than being unprepared, your team should have a set schedule for each employee’s first day and week. The first day might include an initial meet and greet, a quick meeting with the HR team to go over benefits in more detail, a meeting or job shadowing with another team member to learn more about the role, and a scheduled team lunch. By having a structured schedule in place, new employees will feel welcome and like their time is valued from the moment they step into your dealership.
As part of dealership employee onboarding, during the first day or week, each employee should have a scheduled touch base with his or her direct manager. During this time, managers can set expectations and goals for each new employee. And new employees can have the opportunity to discuss key responsibilities, and any key goals or metrics that will be used to measure success in the role. Once employees have a clear idea of what’s expected of them, they’ll be that much more motivated to do great work for your dealership. 
Your dealership employee onboarding process can make or break an employee’s first impression of working on your team. By following these tips, you can set new employees up for success and drive productivity from day one. For additional information, read the Digital Onboarding Playbook.

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