The COVID-19 pandemic has pushed companies to find creative solutions for everyday tasks, such as job fairs and interviews. One crucial piece: on-boarding employees. This process is vital to the success of a new employee, and now, many companies are faced with how to tackle this task remotely. To better understand what it is like to be on-boarded during a global pandemic, we chatted with recently-hired CareerBuilder employees about their experiences. Meet new hires Kristen Graves, National Account Executive - Healthcare; Gerrit Salinas, National Account Executive - Manufacturing; and Michael Elbaz, Salesforce Developer III.
How did you feel about starting a new job and immediately having to work remotely?
Kristen Graves: I was a little nervous at first. The first two weeks my manager did a check-in call with me just to make sure I was comfortable with the general direction for the day. I had all my questions answered and was ready to hit the ground running; I can’t tell you how valuable that was. A few weeks in, I feel like my manager, my team and CareerBuilder in general helped to make this transition as seamless as possible.
Gerrit Salinas: To be honest, it has been a smooth transition. The training department put together remote training for us, it was well maintained and I think I retained more information than I may have in a classroom setting. I wish I had the opportunities to meet my colleagues in person, but thanks to Zoom, we’ve been able to meet virtually.
What are ways the company and, specifically, your team have helped you get up-to-speed and on-boarded?
Michael Elbaz: My team has been excellent in pointing me in the right direction for essential business items and how to work through internal processes and software systems. They’ve been great at addressing my needs as an employee and have made me feel especially welcomed.
Kristen Graves: I’ve found the weekly all-Sales calls to be a great way to become acclimated to the company culture. The messages that are relayed to all of us from the executive leadership team and our managers are positive, solution-oriented and encouraging. There’s something that makes you proud and excited to start working when there are over 200 people on a Zoom call trying to make the best of these uncertain times.
What advice would you offer to others joining a new team and working remotely from the start?
Gerrit Salinas: Take people up on their generosity and be a sponge. Everyone has been so generous with their time and has made it clear that I can reach them anytime if I have questions or need help. I would also say just dig in. Don't be afraid to jump in and do the work. I know that the learning curve can be steep but the quickest way to climb that curve is to just do it and learn as you go.
Kristen Graves: Structure is your best friend right now. Start your day at the same time as you would if you were going into the office and continue the routine - you’ll be surprised how much you accomplish. I also recommend staying connected and keeping up with the latest information by regularly chatting with your manager and team. During my first two weeks the message to prospects and clients was changing every day because things with COVID were changing so rapidly, it helped to talk that through.
Michael Elbaz: Working remotely requires a lot of discipline, both personally and professionally. It is important to establish ground rules for yourself as if you were working in an office environment. Look at this as a marathon, not a sprint.