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How to successfully onboard employees with virtual workspaces

How to successfully onboard employees with virtual workspaces

Jonathan Davies


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9 mins read

Mon, Aug 2, '21  

In many cases virtual workspaces may be the answer to successful onboarding as they enable the absorption of team culture and norms at super speed!

All the information that circulates in the team is recorded, preserved, and most importantly accessible to new members. Have you ever started a new job and then been left, unceremoniously, in the deep dark abyss to find your own way? You don’t know anything, or anyone, and now you already have to tackle your first task. Taking on a new role is scary enough as it is, without the added pressure of having to navigate a new environment on your own.

Often employers assume that onboarding employees is limited to just sharing HR information about policies and guidelines and where to fill in your hours. But the truth is that although this information is generally necessary to convey at some point – it’s not actually beneficial to starting work. (And if the company has a good intranet, all of this information should be easily findable anyways.) What matters is being able to answer questions like:

  • How are other people doing things?

  • What constitutes great work?

  • How do I collaborate with others?

  • Has something like this been done before?


How an intranet improves the onboarding experience

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This is the kind of tacit information that employers and team members are often too busy or otherwise incapable of communicating, and the kind that you won’t find in an onboarding workshop or the traditional intranet. Yet it’s the most important – so what to do?


Virtual workspaces make onboarding easier

Increasingly brainstorming, information sharing, and decision-making are moving away from the meeting room across the hall to the virtual workspace online. Modern work is conducted by sharing, commenting, and liking – and finally people and information are both in the same place. This is good news for new employees. In many cases virtual communities and virtual workspaces may be the answer to successful onboarding as they enable the absorption of team culture and norms at super speed!


What is a virtual workspace?

A virtual workspace is a working environment where users are digitally connected to each other regardless of their physical location. It replicates the physical office environment and is designed to improve communication and collaboration. Its overall goal is to make employees’ work easier by organizing tasks and data.

What are the benefits of a virtual workspace?

Working in a virtual workspace has many benefits for companies. All the knowledge and information that circulates in the team is recorded, preserved, and most importantly accessible to new members. By following discussions you can quickly get a sense of how people talk to one another, how they collaborate and share their ideas, and how they ask for help from others. By accessing files - not just as a jumble of document names - but in the context of the projects, tasks and discussions they are related to, you can start to gain an understanding of how processes work and how success is measured. This means a faster learning curve, less duplication of work, and likely better results.


Most important benefits of virtual workspaces

  • Work from anywhere, anytime

    Virtual Workspaces significantly increase flexibility within the workplace, because employees are able to access their work environment regardless of their location, time, or device.

  • Lower costs

    Virtual workspaces help to save costs because employees can work remotely and less office space is needed.

  • Increased productivity

    Virtual workplaces increase productivity because workflows are simplified and employees can collaborate easily and fast.

  • Decreased security risks

    Virtual workspaces make businesses more secure because all data is stored in a central system and centrally managed, allowing organizations to apply rules and regulations and keep data in the right hands.

  • Knowledge management

Virtual workspaces improves team communication and reduces risk of misinformation, and other project disasters.


How virtual workspaces make virtual onboarding easier

Onboarding has always been a critical part of the hiring process and with the global pandemic and the shift to remote work, the onboarding process became even more virtual.

What is virtual onboarding?

Virtual onboarding is similar to in-person onboarding - the process of introducing new employees into the new job, except that it’s done virtually. Virtual onboarding uses video conferencing, virtual workspaces such as intranet platforms and webinars as tools in the onboarding process.

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Employers can create a positive, seamless and informative virtual onboarding experience by introducing virtual workspaces. Virtual workspaces can include onboarding training sessions, personal meetings with colleagues, and a virtual happy hour with the team to get to know colleagues in a more casual setting.

Virtual workspaces and remote work

Onboarding employees in a remote setting can be a challenge for employers and a lot of stress for new hires. One of the best ways to create a positive remote work onboarding experience is by using virtual workspaces. They help new employees get familiar with the company, make them feel welcomed, facilitate connections with the team and provide them with the tools and training they need to start making an impact sooner.

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In-person onboarding does not work anymore and organizations need to adjust to virtual onboarding. Modern intranets come with the best features to reshape the onboarding process. Thus, with a strategic approach and the right digital technology, employee onboarding can be more efficient than ever.

If you are interested in knowing more about intranet solutions, book a demo with Happeo. We can help you improve your employee onboarding experience.