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Make a great impression on new employees right from the beginning—otherwise, they may just leave.

That sounds harsh, but in fact, 20% of employee turnover happens within the first 45 days on the job. When people quit this early, it’s often due to ineffective onboarding that fails to demonstrate the value of the company or how the employees themselves provide value.

Great employee onboarding prepares and excites new hires for their work. It strategically educates them when they can best absorb it. And instead of using dry communication methods like text-heavy documents or bullet-laden presentations, great onboarding happens through captivating media—like video.

Read on to learn how you can use video to add depth to your onboarding and truly engage new hires. With these ideas, you can create an experience that prepares employees for work and leaves them feeling excited about your company and their opportunity within it.


The Value of Engaging Employee Onboarding

When new employees don’t work out, it’s not just disappointing—it costs your company money and resources.

If a new hire isn’t happy, replacing them is expensive. According to a study by Employee Benefit News (EBN), it costs companies 33% of an employee’s annual salary to hire a replacement. If the new hire is poorly trained, your company workflow becomes less efficient. Other employees will have to spend time helping out the new hire instead of focusing on their own tasks.

From day one of employment, the key to new hire success is engaging onboarding—a captivating process that teaches new hires how to complete their job effectively and operate successfully within the company.

The formula for onboarding with these results is simple: use a captivating medium, like video, and show content gradually and strategically based on each stage of the onboarding process. With this alignment, new hires will feel settled in their position and excited about growing further at your company.


How to Use Video Throughout Employee Onboarding

Onboarding is incremental. Typically lasting around three months, the process gradually builds new hires’ knowledge of their role and the company so they have time to learn and retain all relevant information. While employee learning and development is an ongoing process, the following stages help set up a new employee for success.

  • The first day: Teach new hires how to access and use company technology, make introductions, review essential company and position-specific information, and set goals for their onboarding.
  • The first 30 days: Train new hires on role-specific tasks and how to take advantage of company benefits like insurance and paid time off.
  • 60 days in: Celebrate the accomplishments of new hires during onboarding and encourage further growth and learning.
  • 90 days and beyond: Put your training to the test, and encourage employees to apply their new knowledge and skills.

Using video, you can create engaging content that’s appropriate for each onboarding stage. The combination of visuals, audio, and movement keeps new hires interested, and the information is strategically paced so they can continue to learn and grow in their roles.

Here are several video ideas to guide new hires along the four stages of onboarding to help them feel at home at your company.


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The first day: make a great first impression

A new hire on their first day can only absorb so much information at once. You don’t want to overwhelm them, especially since they’re probably already a bit nervous.

To keep them engaged, show videos about the essential, high-level information of the company. Give them a broad sense of the company’s goals, personality, and their own role-specific goals. This general information is just enough to excite them about their job while still preparing them for the next few weeks.

Here are a few video ideas to introduce new hires to the company on their first day.

Communicate purpose

Show a welcome video that conveys the mission of your company and a few basic details. Reminding new hires about your company information reinforces their decision and the value of their position, so they feel excited about their work.


Show off your personality

Work relationships matter. Make it easy for new hires to connect with the rest of the team by using video to show the human side of the company. The non-profit Coast & Country Housing, for example, gives new hires a warm welcome with clips that show what employees like to do outside of the office.


Outline onboarding goals

At the end of a new hire’s first day, send an onboarding checklist or video that presents a checklist of achievable onboarding goals. New hires should have a list of these goals they can print and check throughout onboarding. But for the first day, a video is a great way to quickly convey the expectations and set a friendly tone around the goals.


Get them online

It never hurts to use brief how-to videos to help new employees set up their technology and work-related systems, especially if they require complex instruction.

The first day of onboarding is an important introduction to the company. The key is to keep new hires engaged with videos that highlight the main details of your company and their role without overwhelming them with too much information. With just enough content, new hires leave their first day feeling excited about their workplace.

Here’s a video we use to introduce new employees to the team on their first day. 

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The first 30 days: Time to learn

With a comprehensive first-day introduction, new hires are ready to learn more detailed, department-specific content. Show training videos throughout the first month of onboarding to provide role-specific, necessary knowledge.

By pacing out this content during the first 30 days, new hires have enough time to learn and retain more in-depth material. Using video in this training further increases learning and retention outside of the classroom, because employees can watch when they are motivated to learn, and because the medium lends itself to a more interactive experience.

Here are a few video ideas for the first month of onboarding. These examples are designed for specific roles and may not be suited for the employee you’re onboarding, but they’ll show you the level of detail to aim for in the first 30 days.


Cover mandatory industry training

Many roles require training on industry-specific topics. Give new hires this mandatory training in the first month of onboarding—they’ll need to know the information to begin their job so they’ll be eager to learn. Using video is especially good for breaking down complicated topics or rules with visuals. For example, check out this training video on good cybersecurity practices.


Teach a skill

Employees may also need training that isn’t mandatory but still helpful for completing their tasks. With video, you can use characters, text, and more to bring different tactics to life and make them understandable. Ellie Mae, for example, uses humor to capture new hires’ attention in this “intro to call etiquette” training.


Introduce a department

If you’re a medium-to-large company, it can be difficult for new hires to meet their entire department and understand its goals. Welcome them with a video that features team members, talks about practices, and gives a sense of the group’s culture. Watching employees describe the department will make the team feel more relatable and less intimidating.

Use video to teach new hires the role-specific knowledge they need in the first month of onboarding. Using video to explain lessons with different tools—movement, text, images—and spreading the content over 30 days makes the training understandable and digestible.

60 days in: Celebrate and encourage growth

After two months, new hires have learned a lot but may still feel they need more training and resources to feel secure in their jobs.

To make them feel welcome and set them up for post-onboarding, show them, through video, how they’ve already added value and can continue building their knowledge.


Recognize new hires’ accomplishments

Create a video that celebrates the milestones of new hires based on the goals you set at the beginning of onboarding. Videos feel personal, so it’s the ideal medium for employee recognition. If it feels right, you can even share the video with the rest of your team to make your new hires feel especially appreciated. In the video below, the goals are for a long-term employee instead of a new hire, but it offers a great template for how to showcase achievements.


Build a learning resource

Select a permanent place—such as a landing page or cloud folder—where new hires can rewatch onboarding videos if they need to refresh their knowledge.

Videos have a personal touch that’s perfect for onboarding. With video, you can recognize new hires for the hard work they’ve done, so they feel welcome and appreciated. And with all of the videos you’ve created for onboarding, all employees have the resources they need to refresh their knowledge.


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90 days and beyond: Put your training to the test

Now that you’ve provided a comprehensive onboarding experience for your new employee, it’s time to test your training by letting the employee apply their newly gained knowledge and skills.

With decreasing supervision, your new hires are now able to perform their roles and fully contribute to the team. And one of the best ways to demonstrate a deep understanding of said roles is by explaining it to others. Encourage employees to create their own videos, such as an external-facing sales demo or marketing promotion, or an internal video that explains a process or simply introduces them to the rest of the company. By doing so, you’ll be able to assess the employee’s grasp of their new role and gain additional training content for future hires.


Help Employees Grow with Video After Onboarding

Video at each stage of onboarding makes learning engaging. With content that’s understandable and captivating, new hires are prepared and excited for their work.

You can help employees grow even more after onboarding by creating and sharing new training videos. For example, you could build a set of videos to train your team about new software for your department. Using video to help employees at all stages build their skill set means they’ll appreciate your company and their jobs even more.


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