By: Heidi Lynne Kurter – Forbes Magazine

Prior to the millennial generation entering the workforce, the traditional corporate onboarding process was non-existent with employers holding the power as the employees served to pay their dues. Today, an onboarding program is crucial to the retention of top millennial talent. An upwards of 22% of employees leave a company in the first 45 days due to a poor onboarding program.

An onboarding program is an ongoing process lasting up to one year and is crucial to the integration of a new employee. The impact of successful onboarding massively reduces turnover while increasing engagement and creating a successful employee experience.

Companies can inspire unwavering loyalty by adopting these 4 onboarding tactics to turn new hires into seasoned employees

Extend a Warm Welcome Before Day One

 Create a favorable first impression that keeps new hires engaged by implementing a pre-onboarding process. This kicks off the introduction into a company by sending any documents and necessary information to prepare them for their first day. It also doubles as a way to get them excited and make them feel a part of the team. Companies can start integrating new hires by delivering a team introduction with a personalized welcome email. In return, new hires can send an introduction about themselves to the team. This creates a bond between the new and existing employees.

Increase Their Success By Pairing Them With a Mentor

Help reduce anxiety and the uncomfortableness of a new hires first day by giving them an automatic new friend to lean on and learn from. New hires who are paired with a mentor to show them the ropes and ease them into the culture increases their productivity and retention keeping them engaged and feeling supported. Hiring managers need to be strategic in who they assign as a mentor. A tenured and successful partner in their department is ideal. Expectations and details of the partnership should be outlined in advance so the mentor and new hire have a clear understanding of what their relationship entails.

Help Them Identify and Integrate Seamlessly With the Culture

Companies can create an easy transition for the new hire by setting up their space and preparing everything they need prior to their arrival. This gives new hires more time to absorb the culture, become familiar with their team and get a head start on training for their position. Setting up their work space with equipment, systems and login’s helps to eliminate the downtime they’d experience waiting for everything to be set up. Welcome them by having business cards ready and a company swag bag prepared to help them identify with the culture and feel like they’re a part of the team.

Create a Lasting Partnership for Growth

There is nothing more discouraging than starting your first day and having a hands-off manager who couldn’t make the time for you. New hires crave a manager who is involved in their onboarding as it directly improves their chance of succeeding. The once manager-employee relationship has morphed into a partnership with managers taking on a leadership role. Schedule time to get to know your new hire by taking them to lunch. According to SHRM, companies spend on average $4,129 hiring an employee. If you can invest in the recruiting process to hire them, you can invest in building a relationship with them. Get in the habit of providing consistent feedback to your new hire to help develop them. This is their time to lean on you. Don’t make them feel siloed or they’ll be one foot out the door.

If you’re finding it challenging to retain top millennial talent, reflect on your current process and look for areas of improvement. Utilize your team to better understand their experience and mastermind a strategy together while using these tactics as the foundation to your process.