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Something I have seen many businesses struggle with is a solid employee onboarding experience. It’s something that is so important but also can be tricky to get right. I have personally built an employee onboarding experience and it involved having the entire process mapped out within our PSA tool (or other project tool) right from the point of advertising a new role, through to the interview stages, contracts, equipment purchasing and building.

The list goes on and on and that’s before someone even has their first day. Each step of the process was mapped out with tasks assigned to the relevant poeple who need to complete them. From the actual start date I would then have their entire probationary period mapped out with relevant learning content they needed to cover, shadowing opportunities and meetings with every part of the business so they get a real deep grained understanding of their role and how they can achieve and grow within the business. Goals would be set out right from the start giving them purpose and direction.

This is the first impression an employee will get of the new business they’ve just joined. Obviously it doesn’t (or shouldn’t!) stop there. I personally think that this should continue through the employee’s tenure right the way to their exit from the business. Which is why it’s so important to have an employee experience platform in this day and age.

So, lets concentrate on the onboarding experience here, from the perspective of someone’s first day with the business and beyond. We all know when starting with a new company poeple may feel a little anxious or lost, they don’t know the majority of people they will be working with and they probably feel a little overwhelmed with the vast amount of informaiton they need to take in. It will also take them time to build connections and a network of people to help support them. They probably have a bunch of mandatory training, like how to spot a phishing email or how to lift a box correctly. On top of that there will be a truck load role specific training and informaiton that will really benefit the new employee.

How can you make that new employee lose that anxiousness or lost feeling as quickly as possible? How can you make that new employee feel like they have hit the ground running and are actually impacting things, in a positive way without being too much of a burden? How can you make that new employee feel valued and that their contribution is impacting to the overall sucess of their new company?

Below I’ll look into each of the 5 modules of Viva and examine just a couple of ways that they can be used to make the employee onboarding experience slick, meaningful and powerful and this is even more important now with remote and hyrbid working.

Viva Connections

Starting with Viva connections, you can use this like it’s an employee app. With useful informaiton, automatically targeted to the new starter. The dashboard can contain all those useful links to things like your expense applications, your holiday booking process and apps. It could contain new starter training modules within Viva Learning it can have topics cards surfacing for their relevant role. It can connect them to Yammer Communities that they may be interested in. The list could go on and on but this is just a starter for 10.

Viva Insights

Here is your companies oppertunity to show you really care about the new starters wellbeing. I think any induction of new staff should run through how to use Viva Insights, it’s not just that annoying digest email telling you to do things. It can be used to help organise your work each day, add helpful reminders and to do lists. It will help them to connect with their team members and book time with them. Run through the benefits of using the virtual commute and booking out focus time.

Viva Topics

This is where the real magic happens in my opinion, right from the get go a new starters manager can point them in the direction of certain topics. Other areas of Viva can also come right into play here, perhaps theirs a news article in Viva Connections that has a topic tagged within it, your new starter can get relevant info about the topic instantly, without even wondering what it is. Most importantly they will have a list of poeple who they can connect with to gain valuable informaiton about the topic. Meaning they are building real world connections just by interacting with a function of Viva. It brings the content they need to them rather than the person having to go and look for it. It helps to build a community and with that can come innovaiton. Their are endless possibilities here with Topics and employee onboarding!

Viva Learning

I think everyone can see a benefit here, as we all know new starters inevitably have a whole host of training they need to consume when joining. The real benefits here though are having it right within the flow of their work. Be that training modules directly within the teams they are using, this is where it starts to get interesting, or being reccomend learning content by peers. This really shows how Viva Learning is not just an LMS within teams but a community learning platform with so much more relevance. It will enable learning to drive productivity and stratergy rather than just be a compliance feature for new starters. You could even go as far as mapping out a full learning program for a new starter to cover their entire probationary period like I mentioned at the start. Meaning they will have consumed all the informaiton you need them to, to be able to really thrive within the organisaiton, giving them purpose.

Viva Goals

Talking of purpose, the new module coming very soon to a Teams client near you. Viva Goals in undoubtably a key player in any employee onboarding stratergy. Right from the very first meeting with a their manager and team a new starter can be given a set of goals which will align to their own career progression but also the sucess of the team and the company as a whole. What better way to start things off than showing them the impact they can have and a sense of purpose and achievement.


OK, summary time. Like I said the above are just a few starting points on how to use Viva to improve your employee onboarding experience. There are endless possibilities here and right now it’s more important than ever, to get this part right. I think the Key is to use each part of Viva to deliver on the employee onboarding experience but the real supercharger for this is how each module can integrate together accross the whole M365 stack to make things as seamless as possible. I think we should also throw Glint into the mix here as it is a great idea to get new starters sentiment on how they felt the employee onboarding experience was so it can be continually improved and built upon with each new hire.

As mentioned employee onboarding is only one part of the employee experience puzzle, but its probably the first part and needs to be done correctly. I’d love to hear any other peoples thoughts or ideas on how Viva can be used to enhance the employee onboarding experience.