The employee onboarding process is anything but simple. Welcoming new hires with countless contracts and benefits forms (including the I-9 and newly updated W-4 tax form) is not just inefficient, it also negatively impacts the overall employee experience. 

As one of the first touchpoints an employee has with your organization, the onboarding process can make or break how that individual feels about your company. Research from Glassdoor shows that a positive onboarding experience improves new-hire retention by 82% and productivity by 70%, but only 12% are fully satisfied with the employer’s onboarding process. What’s more, only one in five employees say they’d recommend an employer to a friend or family member after the onboarding process. Onboarding is not simply a step in the employee journey, but an indicator of how your organization operates. So It’s crucial to make a strong first impression. 

It’s also just the right thing to do: A good number of those new hires will be fairly stressed about starting a new job. The onboarding process should help to alleviate those anxieties—not add to them with an unwieldy amount of paperwork. 

A manual, inefficient onboarding process is more than just a pain for employees, though—it takes up valuable time your HR team could be devoting toward other, more strategic initiatives, like diversity and inclusion efforts or implementing a new benefits policy. So why aren’t we doing more to improve the way we onboard?

The Modern Onboarding Conundrum 

Most organizations can agree that many of their onboarding systems and processes are outdated. Despite digitizing other areas of the business, onboarding is still light-years behind. 

One particular bump in the road is the I-9 form, which requires new hires to provide their employer with a government-issued ID, such as a passport or driver’s license. An HR professional must then validate each new hire’s ID in person to verify that their employees are, in fact, who they say they are. That means making a copy of that new hire’s ID, filing and storing it securely, and then giving it back to the employee. Depending on how many new hires you onboard at a time, this process can take hours on end—and sometimes, multiple days— making it difficult to get employees up and running quickly enough. 

The I-9 process is due for an upgrade. 

An Alternative for Digital Identity 

One solution to these challenges? A digital onboarding experience that starts by using eSignature, allowing applicants to sign I-9 forms electronically. Then, using DocuSign’s ID verification tool, HR teams can seamlessly capture and validate employee IDs for I-9 forms. 

The ID Verification tool scans the new hire’s government-issued ID and cross-checks the name on the email they provided to their employer to the name on their ID, maintaining I-9 compliance through security verification protocols. Of the list of documents I-9 requires, the ID Verification product currently supports Passports and Driver’s Licenses. The tool also supports both U.S. and European IDs and is fully integrated with DocuSign eSignature, making it an easy transition for HR teams already using the DocuSign Agreement Cloud.  

HR professionals can say goodbye to the manual printing, scanning, copying, and filing of new hires’ IDs in the I-9 process—and let the technology do the work for them. 

Read more about digitizing the onboarding process

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