Why Excel Checklists Are Destroying Your New Employee Onboarding

new employee onboarding checklist template excelLet’s face it, the Excel experience is anything but memorable, which is troubling when you’re using a new employee onboarding Excel template.

Effectively onboarding your new hires brings heaps of advantages to the table. For example, good onboarding can boost employee retention by as much as 82%. The troubling thing is that 88% of companies don’t onboarding well. Couple that with the fact that 68% of new hires leave within the first three months.

You get the picture. So, the next question is this: Can Microsoft Excel new employee checklists boost your onboarding experience and reduce new hire churn?

In this Process Street article, I’m taking you through what you can get from using Excel as your new employee onboarding template tool and a few ways you could boost your onboarding experience.

This article will cover:

I’ve put my ‘special’ investigation hat on for this one (yes, I own a special investigation hat and no, you can’t touch it). Let’s get down to the bottom of this and settle the debate once and for all!

Excel checklists: Too one-dimensional?

Excel is home for much of an organization’s documentation – let’s give a round of applause to conditional formatting and pivot tables! I don’t know about you, but no matter how hard I try, spreadsheets never seem to be entertaining.

The same can be said when constructing a new employee onboarding template with Excel. This is the complete opposite effect you want to have on your new hires. You’re striving to offer the best, most engaging onboarding experience – copying and pasting data into cells and handing this over to your new hire isn’t going to do it. Instead, these spreadsheets are only going to make your new hires want to pull all their hair out strand by strand, run for the hills, or both!

A ‘gentle human touch’ boosts onboarding success. Process management platforms – like Process Street – allow you to automate tedious, repetitive tasks. This empowers you to focus on the important task of building rapport with your new hire.

Modern process management tools empower you to create interactive employee onboarding experiences with intuitive, easy to use templates that can be customized to your exact preferences.

Scattered files leave room for error (& waste time)

It can become exhausting keeping track of all your documents, and we all know how quickly these documents can start piling up. This is one of the issues you have when your new employee onboarding process isn’t in one dedicated place, like when you’re using Excel.

That doesn’t mean you can’t use Excel for your onboarding, but it’s far easier to have a single source of truth telling you the progress of each of your new hires and the status of each process. A McKinsey report showed that knowledge workers spend approximately 19.8% of their work time searching and gathering information.

scattered files with excel

Don’t you think this time could be better utilized creating dynamic onboarding processes? Process Street does, which is why Pages can be used as a process documentation system to help outline the best onboarding resources for your new hire alongside the initial onboarding checklist for effortless accessibility.

Having a dedicated workflow management tool for your onboarding process helps you reduce the risk of human error, saves you time and money, and creates a centralized knowledge base living alongside your onboarding workflows. Imagine what you could be losing with tools like Microsoft Excel.

Sacrificing meaningful context

You sacrifice meaningful context when using Microsoft Excel to onboard your new hires. With Microsoft Excel, it’s challenging to bring your new hire into the process. Whereas, with Process Street, you can literally bring them in by assigning them to tasks.

You can also create an efficient timeline consisting of onboarding activities that you have complete visibility and control over, helping your new hire feel supported during their introductory period.

Process Street workflows are designed with fantastic capabilities, allowing you to include tons of onboarding information. Want to make the experience more interactive with videos and pictures? Use the embed widget to do just that. Want to make sure tasks are completed correctly? Assign Approvals to these tasks and make yourself the one to sign it off.

Process Street onboarding template interaction

How Process Street can right Excel onboarding wrongs

See, this is why your onboarding is so difficult. It’s not you, it’s the tool you’re using. But it’s alright because here’s a better one that can fix all those problems.

Process Street is cost-effective, easy to use, and incredibly accurate. Here are only a few of the ways Process Street can start boosting your employee retention through a dynamic onboarding experience:

boosting employee retention

Save time and reduce human error

Process Street is designed with specific features, like assignments, approvals, and notifications. These features help teams standardize operations and streamline collaboration between departments.

We aren’t perfect. That’s why human error is always going to be a risk, but the likelihood of these errors occurring can be greatly reduced when removing the human-factor and automating recurring tasks.

Documenting onboarding procedures within Process Street helps you highlight any bottlenecks or tasks that might be recurring. From here, you can use Process Street automations to ensure that these tasks can be done ‘themselves’ without human intervention. Automating helps you free up time to perform more complex onboarding activities, like building a rapport with your new hire.

Process Street onboarding template approval

Offer consistency

Standardizing your onboarding procedures in Process Street, doesn’t just offer time-saving capabilities. It also provides your team with a clear and concise set of instructions to follow throughout the onboarding process. These onboarding procedures can then be distributed and adhered to by team members, providing that each new hire gets the same, consistent onboarding experience.

Create a timeline

You can also create an efficient timeline consisting of onboarding activities that you have complete visibility and control over. This structured timeline helps your new hire feel supported during their introductory period. Process Street’s image and video embeds also create a more interactive experience. Conditional Logic helps make sure the process is specific to the resources each new hire requires.

Process Street onboarding template timeline

Offer continuous improvement

Like most things in the world, onboarding is constantly improving. You want a system that helps you improve your onboarding process effortlessly. With Process Street, you can easily jump into a workflow and make any improvements.

Your team can then see the improvements you make, as they’re referencing the same workflows. No back-and-forth explanations are needed. When you edit anything in your workflow within Process Street, all active and future workflows will be adjusted to fit these improvements with immediate effect.

Click here to get this free Process Street employee onboarding template today!

Microsoft Excel finishes the race, but Process Street is the champion

bad onboardingWhy work harder during the new employee onboarding process, only to offer a bland experience? Yes, Excel can keep your data organized and format like a template. But is this going to charm your new hire enough to keep them engaged throughout this onboarding process?

Offering them an interactive onboarding experience boosts their retention and leaves them supported. Let’s face it, Excel can’t give you this – Process Street can! As soon as your new hires accept your offer, you can make them feel welcomed while providing a clear sense of direction.

Modern process management tools empower you to create interactive employee onboarding experiences with intuitive, easy to use templates that can be customized to your exact preferences. Browse our gallery of pre-made templates that can be easily added to your Process Street library. These templates are completely customizable for whatever you need – or you can build your own workflow from scratch!

What problems do you encounter while onboarding and how do you solve them? Let us know in the comments below.

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Grace Donaldson

Grace is a content writer with a thirst for knowledge and coffee. You'll find her reading in a small cafè or singing at a rundown jazz bar when she's not overconsuming coffee or compartmentalizing her thoughts into a blog post.


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