We use some examples in ConnectWise Manage, but the processes are more general and don’t even all take place inside a PSA. They can be applied to many PSAs.
Excellent. All right, so today’s webinar is about the employee onboarding process. This is something that I have felt not enough time and attention is paid, especially as we’re IT service delivery firms, we tend to think more technical. And we tend to forget the human element a lot, which is our human resources, our employees, our teammates. This is from the it documentation, users grip, you don’t have to be a member to join. I just like to say that’s where we promote it for this, why we do this stuff. Anything that’s loosely related to documentation uses documentation. For it firms. We like to give them some some good content. I am not a very strict speaker or professional presenter. So if you have a question in the middle of my slide, feel free to unmute yourself or send the chat book I’ll get my attention or find out Place. If I feel I’m going to cover it later, I’ll let you know. And definitely at the end, I’ll take a nice long pause. If you have questions, I’m going to share some ideas of your own. There is no one right way, we just want to open your eyes to some different ways that this could be done.
All right, so this whole process is about getting team members as productive as possible, not both to your bottom line, but to your culture. So they fit in with your company, and knowing you have success every time. Real quick, a little information about it, Doug, you can tag us in your post if you’re in other groups or forums at it, Doug, we used to be it Doc, and it’s for anybody who wants to deal with it documentation. It was originally founded by Tracy. Tracy, if you’d like to introduce yourself, I can let you take over. And nice Alan.
Yeah, I founded it back in 2018. Not because I was an expert on documentation because I was absolutely clueless. So I thought I couldn’t find any discussions on documentation and doing good documentation and processes. So I formed the group. And lucky for me, Alan joined along the way, and he was way more knowledgeable. And I had it set up for mostly focused on it glue because it didn’t have any kind of support forums. So you know, I was hungry, looking for help and ideas. So create the Facebook group. We, I flicked it from it glue to all types of documentation because it’s the same problem no matter what platform you’re using. I’m myself. I own an MSP located Lexington, Kentucky called next century technologies. I’ve been in business since 2001. So I’ve been really focusing the last few years I have it. And I’m really focusing on making processes where I don’t have to be in the day to day, I can step back and my team can take over. And that’s the goal of having good documentation. I mean, that’s great. If you can take what’s in your ahead, put it in a document and have your team follow it while you’re on vacation or out sick or have other pressing matters. And it also gives you time to actually be a business owner instead of a technician. Anyway, I’ll hand it back to Ellen.
Oh, we hit 1000 members in September of last year. And notice my new bullet point added to the slide Tracy, we’re on target for 2000 members next month.
I believe I have like approved a ton over when COVID hit. I’ve never seen so many people interested in documentation. I mean, and I’m like, I know what these people are doing. They’ve slowed down and now they’re going back and trying to hit the documentation that they should have done before. You know, it’s still great to have all these people joining and talking about documentation.
Very good. I encourage everybody to post their questions, participate in answers and keep inviting members is the more brains we have in the hive mind, the more quickly we can answer I personally use it We’ll find out more about me in a second. I have clients who are msps. And every time there’s a question I don’t have an answer to or what different ideas. I use you guys to give me those ideas like, what are we doing and various platforms to document this. So the more the more the merrier. Briefly, where do I get all my content from? Why am I authorized to speak on this matter? Maybe I’m not. But I have been in it since 94. I did own an IT firm, like some of you guys. I sold the MSP in Iran to others. And that’s when I noticed that in running the two others and my own, the two others, I doubled them. In my time there. I was not the only person involved. In fact, Brooke, you can also say hi, she and I worked together at one of those msps and she was always a great asset. Now I have full of great ideas and love the process and documentation as well and is a big part of today’s question. presentation as well. So I found that a company doing it so day in and day out, I am working inside of clients documentation systems and their PSA is helping them with KPIs. We’re even managing a few small parts of the team. And we have a subscription website where some processes are available. I think we’re over 100 now, processes and more than that we count webinars and videos and such. So that’s what I do all day long. So I get to have a lot of experience in a little period of time. I do not know everything. But I have lots of ideas. So let’s start with a poll. There’s not a lot of us on the call. But if you’d like to humor me, I here are instructions to take part in this poll to kind of set the stage for where we’re at. So go to swift polling comm as an ask you for a code decodes a 1179 seven and then select which one of these ways is your primary method of onboarding a new team member. You probably have a little bit of all of these in here in here. But what is that one thing that stands out as the most. And while you’re doing that, there is a way for me to show you the results live.
Here we go.
All right. This will keep updating get into the call, I can post this with the with the upload later with final results are only a few of us on the call. But this is exactly as I expected to go. I’ve definitely heard of internally created videos, I’ve seen very few of my life ever use those. And I’ve heard of formal training time. But again, I’ve seen very few people use those. And me personally, I always, as the new employee had learned by shadowing vendor videos and trial by fire. So run the majority. That’s the good news. So obviously, we’ve all done the shadowing thing. And what Brooke and I tend to teach people as let’s make it a little more formal than that, and for some very specific reasons. First, let me teach you about leaky bucket syndrome. You teach somebody to do something. So you’re the expert, because you know how it’s done. You teach them how to do what you do. So you pass them the knowledge, in this case, knowledge is water. And the bucket is your memory. Well, we’re all human beings. We forget things. Things don’t quite stick because it’s something we do it. We have other stimulus coming at us other influences causing us to do things differently. And so some water leaks out and I’m here to tell you, you can’t stop the water from leaking out. It’s human nature to be our what which is dangerous, especially when you start doing shadowing and trial by fire is the same individual with leaky bucket, who’s training the next person whose bucket is also leaky. Before you know it, you don’t even realize Your own company culture or processes anymore. Because they can have taken a life of their own, the technicians are doing whatever they see as best, hopefully for the customer and for the vision, which is great, but it doesn’t always match the overall vision and goal. So that becomes a problem that we lose knowledge, which is one of the reasons we have an employee onboarding process. It’s designed to impart knowledge in such a way that that you keep filling the bucket back up. As with a couple of these presentations we’ve done on big topics. I always start with three boxes, it seems, and everybody’s interested in what’s the content that’s in the middle box. In this case, it’s the first month, it’s the stuff you think of employee starts. What do they do? What are they working on every day until they’re on board? That’s what you probably all came here thinking of. But what Brooke and I always end up doing is putting a lot of emphasis on what you do before that. That’s where the secret sauce is that it’s before their start date things you’re doing and Of course, it’s a bit of a continuous improvement process and having a formal closing process to say you are officially on boarded. Now you can move on to being an employee in the company or a team member. So let’s dive in, shall we? What is this magic stuff we’re doing? nd before they start, this boils down a lot to setting the tone. How does your new team member
feel that you treat them?
feelings are hard in an IT business. Right. So what are the things that we do? So let me tell you the first thing that you don’t do since I saw all the survey responses, and they’re what I expected. Don’t have the technician set up their own PC. It may sound like a clever idea. Oh, we’re going to test their skills and see how they do it. But they don’t know your environment. They’re going to ask you a bunch of questions or you really didn’t delegating that task, or are you delegating by abdicating those responsibilities? I’m curious what would happen if in your onboarding process, you allowed your management team before things start to go ahead and acquire all the licenses they need. Make sure all the hardware is in hand whether you have to buy new hardware or allocate existing hardware. Same for the software. There’s any areas your technicians can’t touch, setting up those usernames. Again, before they start having the technician have all the users and passes set up ready to go their phone extension good. Their hardware already set up their desk set up with the computer monitor keyboard on it and it’s clean. As opposed to shoving off the last guy stuff at the last second push. Alright, he’s gone now. You can take his place. How does that feel? And then add to that the soft skills, the care package, making sure you take that customer take that employee to Lunch on the day after they joined, showing them that you had the forethought to have all this stuff done. We are so excited to have you here. Here’s a welcome kit, here’s a company branded t shirt, a mousepad, whatever those things are, make them except if you have business cards or cell phone provided by the company, have those on their desk waiting for them. It’s the human elements that are going to carry you through any speed bumps along the way. Just like your best client, you mess up once and your best client because they love you and you fix it. Things are great. If you keep having speed bumps, or you never had that relationship to begin with. It’s a lot harder to recover from mistakes. You’re doing the same with your employees. I’ve heard this. There’s probably some famous book I’m not thinking of I don’t know if it’s seven habits or a different one. But it’s the emotional bank account. Every time you are kind to somebody you do a favor for somebody you think of somebody you’re adding coins into the emotional bank account. Every time you ask for a favor or you forgot something, or you said something wrong, or you made a mistake, you pull money out of that emotional piggy bank. So you’ve got to put something in so you have something to pull out later.
The last piece, if I had it on here, right, I pull it up
is because when a client when a new team member does set up their new computer, even if it’s all set up for them, they still have to log on and make things work. So they have to know the passwords. They have to know the password to the password manager. Right so give them something to show that I’ve already anticipated your needs. Here they are. And it could be as simple as this is a screenshot I took a one of our really basic ones for internal air, which is hey, this is your email address. This is your initial password. These are the various areas you’ll need the password at, here’s your Learning Portal, your slack URL, all the basics to get those things set up. Hopefully, they’re going to change all these passwords really soon. So this piece of paper will will begin to matter less and less as the week wears on. But that’s, and then, of course, my favorite is I would manage all this in a project. I know you autotask users love projects. Not really, they’re not hard. They’re just different connectwise projects as well. So hear me out. We were also slow to do this in projects. We had an icy glue or Word document with all the steps and checkboxes. And I would go Yep, done done. Oh, gotta do this still, hey, work on this and I had a piece of paper and it worked well. However, Brooke came up with the idea of using this in a project for one of our clients recently. And we had an unintended side benefit, which was that the new team member had to work in the PSA to find their next task and to record their time for the day, which gave us a great conversation and coaching opportunity for working in the PSA as well. And we’re like, oh, wow, now we can actually see how they’re putting in time every day. We can make corrections and coaching opportunities throughout the week as things go. And a project became quite powerful and doing that. On top of all the other benefits of projects, which is assigning disparate, different resources to different tasks at a time. This is a quick example of the top half of our project from Connect wise, this would look very similar and autotask. Some pre start tickets, they have some checklists or tasks inside of those. Same for some of the week one stuff we’ll get into in a second. That’s what it looks like. If you see blue hyperlinks at the bottom of the slide, it just means that is a process uploaded to Eureka process calm In our membership section, I like to link in there. So I remember if somebody asks you which one it is, I can tell them or if I have to open it for some reason for a question I can get there pretty quick. Do we have questions so far before we dive into what to do on day one?
Have you done the projects in autotask? yet? Have you been to those?
I haven’t dug deeply into them. I was supposed to for presentation next week at DEF CON.
It’s it’s like, what’s your
first thought is like, I can work on this project instead? I haven’t dug in deeply to those yet. No.
All right. Just curious. I have not dug in. I know a little bit. I did the autotask training at datacom a couple years back, and they talked a lot about projects, but I haven’t done a lot with them. Because when I started out tests, that wasn’t even a thing. So I’ve gotten used to not using them.
Right all I’ve verified that So far that as a technician, you can make project tasks look very similar tickets to them soak into my work section. But I haven’t figured out the project management side on the technical details part yet.
All I can see the benefit of having the project in autotask, or any PSA versus having the tickets is that the project should tell you what stage you’re at. It should show all the previous stages and show who did them and how long it took. And then it shows you the future ones and who they’re assigned to. And an estimate how long it takes.
Is that correct? Correct. And those are the biggest benefits as you can have that predecessor successor relationship between tickets. Okay, okay. All right. Well, let’s dive into the stuff people expected here today.
Which is alright, they show up now what
I’m now first of all, disclaimer, of all of our processes. I find this is the hardest one to RND which is rip off and duplicate. I. So I’m trying really hard to present this in a way that you can take those back into your process. Because if I say I want you to watch connectwise video number 103 on a on a Monday afternoon and by the way, you’ll see I’m asking you to be that specific. I have connectwise but the same thing could apply to autotask. Or the way you guys work you don’t follow one of the three says you’d like 105 so they’re nuanced differences that should be in there. So day one. Uh, yes, we’re supposed to have the paperwork handled beforehand. However, I always have them check in with whoever’s handling human resources, maybe it’s you and say, do we have all the paperwork that we need is it all signs that filled out right? I turned them loose there first, and then I want to make sure on day one, we get the soft work done and soft work is the emotional stuff, the touchy feely stuff or post COVID the feely not touchy stuff. Um, introduce them to the team of course, I highly encourage the owner of the company to take him to lunch that day tour of the building how snack machines work, make sure you cover all those things, don’t leave them stranded.
Those are the basics.
And day one and other days of the first week, specific videos on specific tools, don’t say, Hey, we have these 18 tools I need you to watch all the videos one day will shoot themselves in the head never and they won’t survive a day or two. They’ll watch them all crank all through them throughout the few weeks and remember very little of it because there’s too much information with no context. instead be very picky. Do they really need to know your RMM day one? Maybe start them with the PSA videos and maybe even at that you start them hey, Once you learning ticketing first before you worry about time entries, or maybe you need them to one of my common day one things is, here’s how you work the telephone system. Maybe that’s a video. But by having a telephone system they can now call for help. So I’m very strategic about how many videos that have them watch. Don’t make it too many. I’d probably keep it to less than two hours a day of videos. You have plenty of time to catch up on these and be strategic in how you do it. Also have them read processes not here’s my access to it, glue, repass portal or SharePoint read all the cool stuff or read this folder. Tell them specifically which processes you want them to read in each day should only be a few. Start with the most critical overarching ones. For example, we have one called ways to succeed. It’s pay forget all the step by step processes for a second here. 10 things you should know about working in our company. There’s general things you should always do little things like if it’s not in it glue doesn’t exist. It’s not in the PSA, it didn’t happen. beak always have next steps on all your tickets. Just little things like that. And then yes, for your shadowing people, you can do some shadowing this day as well. That is okay. But be specific. With everything. I want you to shadow, the dispatcher, which by the way, if it’s a technician, don’t forget that role. Have them shadow the dispatcher at some point. Same for your salespeople, account managers. It’s okay to have shadows and service folks and dispatchers to see how the company works. And then another piece of the secret sauce is they should be checking in with the manager every day. Not a Hey, how are you doing? Great thanks by a formal meeting where you sit down and you go. Alright, here are the videos. I signed you today. Here are the processes you assign me today. Let me go over the highlights with you. What do you understand? What do we need clarification on? How is your shadowing? Let’s look at your time entries for the day day one, you might not have one, you may have to show them how to do that. As let’s fix those every day. It’s a formal meeting, part of the process. To help guide you on this journey, what do you assign them? When working? I came up with this task mastery list. It’s different for each role, the company what are what are the general tasks they need to know how to do? And if I had to pick a priority, what would it be? So for a technician, I like this, people make fun of my priority numbers. I believe in the old days of basic where you had lumber, your lines 1020 3040. That wasn’t just the way the code worked. It was so that if you suddenly had an idea that had to go between 10 and 20 users right 15 to to sort your line number. So I do the same thing I priorities, maybe for training service manager. And so when I’m picking the training videos and the processes and I’m having an interview the end of the day, I’m looking at the top of the list. And I’m changing it from not started to training begun. We’ve talked about this now. And I’m going to keep quizzing and pushing that to try to get them to a functional level before digging too hard into the stuff below that because if they’re accomplishing something on their own every day, they’re becoming a more and more viable team member.
As we move into week two
I still love keeping up on the on the soft touch the touchy feely stuff, but it really is a continuation. We’re going to continue on a very specific plan of videos and trading. You shadowing is a great way to learn your job four hours a day, Max Make sure all the important si peas to the whole company. And you keep doing this manager check ins In fact, another very powerful tool during these manager check ins is role playing. If you’re hiring IT help desk technician they have to answer the phone. How hard is it to answer the phone while putting in a ticket and trying to find the ticket when the customer is talking to you till your other problems. That’s a skill set that takes practice and familiarity. So we already spent some time getting them familiar with the PSA and training. But I would spend time role playing pretending to be the client call them up in the room. I would literally say the words ring ring, they would answer the phone and we would go through what they say. I would give them some challenges I would have them using Connect wise trying to find the customer and then get them faster at the process before they’re actually alive within the clients also noticed they’re not producing tickets yet. They’re not producing hours of labor to build you I give most technicians a presentation because some of them are antsy to get started as well as the owners are antsy for them to get started. Look, we’re going to take our time, we’re going to train you, right give you all the tools you need, because I know for a fact, once we have you’re in full production, it’s going to be hard to take this time ever again. And I make them feel comfortable with the fact that we’re we’re not going to jump there yet. There are always emergencies, I get it. If you just have to have a guy, go do some work, do what you got to do, but you try to make that an emergency break the glass only or make it part of the shadowing, where hopefully this year to assist.
Role Playing Don’t be chicken.
Week Three. Hopefully you’re starting to wrap up all the videos by then
only the certain sfps are left. Hopefully most of those are covered. But then we recommend reverse shadowing so now especially for technicians maybe for other jobs, other job roles, too. If you have the new team member doing the work of somebody else, shadowing them to make sure it gets done correctly. So you’re not turning them loose on your most valuable asset yet, which is clients or worse data RMM or autotask. Or automate, where they can break everything in the world. Watch how they work, get comfortable with what they have going on. And continue doing your check ins using the test masculist. Where are we in these tests? prove it to me, show me you know this stuff? How can I help. There is a an added benefit here as well. More and more of your teammates are getting to see their work. Because one of the things I like to do is I like to kind of ask around to teammates how they’re doing. And I encourage our other team members if there’s a new teammate, who is going to make your life harder, let me know now. So I can Either coach it out of them or go ahead and dismiss them before we’re too far in and everybody’s gonna hurt because of it. I don’t want to destroy a culture. So wait for I digress. Week Four, they’re working solo, except for there’s still some training wheels on. We’re going to use the drip method of scheduling. Has anybody heard of the drip method? I know I’ve lost ways videos, Tracy hasn’t. Um, it’s a drip like a drip from a faucet. So one drop comes out so you hand them one ticket. You let them work the ticket. When they complete the ticket, you review it. You coach on it, you make sure everything’s right. Great tickets closed. You handle the next ticket. So now they’re working completely solo but you’re supervising after the fact. The See how it’s going. Continue manager check ins. Make sure it happens at the end of every day. Remember, you can always go back a few steps in the task mastery of something slipping. But you want to be checking in those you have to make the final decision here as you get to the end of their four week training program. So at the end of this project or employee onboarding, team member onboarding, your final task mastery list review, evaluate the status and everything. You make the ultimate decision that they’re ready to go solo, no one’s ever perfect at this point, which is fine, but you’ve given them all the tools they need. There’s a lot of si peas you might be reviewing, I hope. And usually my goal for them is I remind them You do not have to memorize this SRP. But you have to know is that an SLP exists and how to find it.
As long as they have that down, they should do fine.
If they are not functional on enough items, you have to have an honest evaluation with yourself. Your training program is unrealistic time expectations or is it them you’ve heard the term quick fire slow to hire. It’s true for reason it hurts. But it’s true for a reason. And then, as with any project there should be a post mortem meeting post mortem I learned how to define this or earlier this week to a client means after death he wanted to move this meeting into the before we close the project I know that’s a different meeting. This meeting is after it’s all said and done you go back to your new team member and you go Hey, you went through our training program? What was boring what what didn’t help you any what helps you tremendously. There’s something we can redo the order of get their advice. Keep in mind their advice is just that advice. You don’t have to take it, but evaluate it is something that’s unique to them. So you shouldn’t change it isn’t an option. You should have maybe talk to the rest of your team like, hey, they have this idea. What do you think about adding it to our onboarding program? And if so, add it to your your project template or your recipe for onboarding. It’s another chance when you’re asking this question. So how’s my new guy working out? We need him to be an asset to the team.
So that is the project in a nutshell, I’m going to show you what I feel the results are. And you guys can argue with me after that. Alright, so this is who we had before, right? He’s been trained by the guy. He’s been trained by the guy who’s been trained by the guy, maybe one more of those in his buckets basically empty of the knowledge we originally tried to impart on that first person. But we have a process where we’re teaching them slps and how to find them so they can get a trained in. We’re giving them continuous training to keep playing by There’s a couple of other icons in here that don’t actually apply to this process. But for coverage, I believe that KPIs can be a form of constant reinforcement for what supposed to be in the bucket, holding them accountable, as well as other coaching opportunities as it comes up. And you’re coaching them every day in this four weeks to keep this bucket full. And now you have somebody who actually has all the knowledge that they need to do their job the way you want the job done. So that was the 800 mile per hour preview of employee onboarding project. I’m curious what questions you have or what things you do differently. And if you want to ask if this is bad versus good. It’s something I say, not resonate or seem out of place. You can do that via chat or unmute yourself. Either way, will work fine. And Brooke will tell me who’s who. I literally lost my chat window. I think oh, HS chat here this all h will bring up the chat box for you if you prefer that way
and is also a mute.
I’ll a is mute and unmute if you’re having trouble finding the toolbars like I frequently have too many monitors.
So that we are
that we have developed. It’s a four week process. The first time I took this into a client, the owner was just like, you’ve got to be kidding me Lady for weeks, what the what? And I was like, No, if you just let me do it this one time, let’s test it with one person and let’s see how it goes. You’re going to get pushed back because it does seem like a long time. But it’s really not if you look about how the project is broken down because week four, they’re actually working tickets, but we’ve built up to That process by doing practice tickets in our, our own company so that if something’s messed up, it’s not like a deal breaker. And we built up to that point um, some of the immediate dividends that you’re going to see from this that’s a sellable thing, so to speak to if you’ve got owners or management that don’t want to buy into this is time entries. The first place that I put this in at that we tried it for the on the first employee, the first week, he did timesheets on his own, he had nothing rejected there were no time entries wrong. All the agreements were correct. The work type was correct. configs were on every ticket client facing notes. were correct. Next steps were in there. So the fact that nobody had to carefully go over this kid’s timesheet and kick it back week one is an instant payback and if you have you know, X amount of employees and you’re bringing them on new we all know how long it can take to approve timesheets. If they’re not done well that is a massive time suck. just about everywhere that I go and that Alan and I consulted it is a massive amount of time that people are spending. So if you can put some of this forethought into bringing new employees on, and letting them do this, like I said, that is one thing, that’s a very tangible thing that you can get back our wise.
I love it when clients let us proceed anyways.
He was definitely cautious, but at the end, he really liked the process. I have another client now who really pushed back on it pretty hard. We started it midway with an employee that just started a week ago against our advice they started at after the fact. But that particular project is now paying dividends because the person is exactly the same thing, how to do tickets, how to make the statuses change. What happens when I do this. If I do something wrong, it’s not client facing we can fix it, we can talk about it. And then the end of day check ins with the service manager. They don’t have to be Long, but it’s important to get those done because that’s the quickest way to set the expectation and get them in good habits out of the gate. If you wait till the end of this thing, it’s, it’s like a triangle, the basis where all the work is the basis like before they start, you’ve got all that work you’ve got to do before the pre start date. And then as they get better you get to the top of the pyramid or the triangle, and then you don’t have as much work to do because you’ve set them up for success. And then they’re, they’re off and running.
Well, now I feel bad because I only have five days in my onboarding process. So what do you what are you doing in weeks, two through four.
Hold on a second, I will pull up something so I can bring give you
examples because we’ve got a list of training videos, which we don’t shove all into one day, though, sprinkled throughout
show each week I have as a phase in each week is 40 hours. So I take literally and that’s intentional so that I know exactly how much time I’m going to be spending each week. Without employees, I need 40 hours worth of work every single week. So week one, you’re doing the intros. I’ve got the technical setup. There’s the first week, there’s a day one training with a service manager owner, where you’re really going over the core values, the main business processes that you use the main application, you’re not going to specifics but you’re giving them the general overview. You might if you’re using EOS or another type of product, you’re going to go over some of the veto stuff that you want to get them ingrained in early on. I have connectwise training for these particular clients. That’s what they use. And I have one ticket, but I spread it out over the five days. So I have like an hour and a half every single day the first first week so they have an hour and a half every day Monday through Friday. I’ve got it glue training setup. They’re the same thing. I’ve got it at one ticket every single day. I schedule them for the ticket because in all the tickets, they’re scheduled for it so they learn how to use the dispatch portal how to use them. Calendar how to see what’s on their schedule know what’s next. What do I need to be going to? I have shadowing in week one, again, it’s scheduled, I schedule it with that person and with the technician or engineer they’re working with. So that’s scheduled Monday through Friday. Um, week two, I do not I will tell you, I do not introduce any RMM training until week two, week two, I put in the automate training, which is what this particular client uses for their RMM tool. And it’s not a heavy training, it’s, you know, this is the stuff that comes from either the client, one client has some videos, or it’s what the manufacturer producers as far as their videos, it’s an introduction. So it’s not you know, you’re going to learn automate inside and out and I have that sprinkled throughout the whole week. I’ve got shadowing again that week. Um, I’ve got more connectwise training that depends on the path that they’re in. And then I have daily check ins with the service manager. The Daily check ins with the service manager on week two, they sometimes get Little bit longer because they’re putting in more time entries and there’s more things we need to talk about and go through and explain. At that point, I really start talking about the statuses. The SLA s what happens with those SLA is why it’s important to use certain statuses. They sometimes they don’t get the concept today, the other person I’m training another place, they left a ticket in a scheduled status scheduled hits the SLA s it means is waiting on us. I was like, that’s not how this works. You’ve got to use these statuses in order to make the timer stop. So you really start explaining more of the finer points of how your PSA works. Week Three, that’s when I do the reverse shadowing. So they get a ticket with another engineer. They work that ticket together. The new employee works that ticket with the other guy watching him he does the work somebody else supervises the ticket. It’s also in that week that I started introducing the metrics everywhere that I currently help with. We have dashboards set up for all of the employees the number They’re responsible for. So we start talking about those KPIs and metrics. I introduced the weekly meetings in week one, most of the places that I met, I have team meetings every single week with every single team. So we do those, I start introducing the BI weekly or monthly check ins with each employee. What those check ins look like what sort of document we use, or software, I do make them do a lot of training with dispatch, because if you don’t do something right, and they have a dispatcher set up, your work is going to make the dispatcher grumpy, if your dispatchers grumpy, you’re not going to get any of the good tickets if you get dispatch. So we got to make sure the dispatcher is happy. We’ve got to make sure that we’re not causing more work for other people. So I do make them sit with the dispatcher so that they can see what the life of the dispatcher is like when you get a ticket that has no notes or no next steps. What is your lack of following the process causing other people to have to do down the line? So I want to show them out of the gate when you don’t do this. This is what it means for this next person that’s on the same team that you’re on. This means this person as a dispatcher now has all of this extra work to do simply because you didn’t follow the process and do next steps. And then week four is working ticket solo. The drip method is something that Alan and I came up with
for traveling techs.
It is it’s what we came up with an MSP that he and I worked on a long time ago. And we had, we went from a free for all to a very structured, organized MSP there with various layers of helpdesk and whatever. And we had some people that were really struggling to follow a schedule and tickets, they had 10 tech 10 tickets on their schedule for that day, they would work one and then make a hard right turn and never came back. So we had nine tickets we were getting to so it was for troubled texts that we made it for. We ended up refining it over several years. And now I use it for the new client onboarding. So they get one ticket. They have to call me when they’re done with a ticket. I mean, to go to your technical work, you’ve had three weeks up to this point. We hired you you’re qualified, go do it. When you get done with it, you call me and come back and see me. And then we’re going to go through this ticket with a fine tooth comb. And until it’s perfect, you don’t get another ticket. And then it just that kind of stuff. It just I know, it seems like a lot, but you are saving yourself so much work later on down the road, it’s so much easier to set the behaviors and habits now than to try to go back six months from now. And even if you got a guy that’s a superstar, I don’t care, we’re still doing the drip method. You can be the tier three rock star and killing it. But we’re still gonna have to get these tickets right even if you’re mister shooting, you know, superstar, I still got to have the notes in I still got to have a config on this ticket and it’s still got to be in the right status.
Tier threes are the worst of that actually.
They’re definitely the hardest to deal with. They are very set in their ways at that point. And it’s very difficult to turn that ship but again, it’s what the dividends you get in on the back end of this are so great like that because it’s less work that you have to do as a manager owner to go rein somebody in if you set the if you put the foundation down or
Okay, well, now a lot of my service managers got a lot of work to do.
It’s a lot, it is a lot. It’s a lot of work. It’s a huge investment. But like I said, I just, we’ve Alan and I have done this for, you know, a while now. And we started out with a piece of paper. And we started out with this document, and then we went to a ticket. And we had all these tasks on it. And then that got unwieldly because it was just so many tasks or whatever. And then we were like, why don’t we try this and then we did that. And then we broke it down into weeks. And like said, this is where we got it at at this point. And we’ve successfully implemented, implemented a couple of places and it works well.
So Tracy, you have your five day process, which is an amazing story is more than most people have. And the catch is, after the process is done, you talk to everybody involved, what can be better and what happened to us over time, as we kept seeing other things Want to make sure we’re happening before they were sent into the wild to pick up bad habits? And it became a longer process? Four weeks is not a magic number, but it is there to be an eye opener that this stuff takes time.
Oh, yeah, I know that.
You can’t rush them into production.
It takes us four to six weeks to onboard an employee on any level. You know, it doesn’t matter if they’re tier one, tier two, tier three, it just takes just we just don’t have it down. I don’t have it where you, you every time they do one ticket, they check in I like that. And then you do the, the tweaks on it. I like that one a lot. But our employee onboarding is tied tightly to our hiring process, because as soon as hiring process is done, onboarding begins as soon as anything. Suddenly you got all those text forms and I have a whole list of text forms and employee handbooks and policies and procedures have to be signed read. Hmm. And it just kicks it over. So Yeah, it’s it’s a lot of hours.
I mean, I was left holding the bag once right order business cards in the cell phone for somebody who changed your mind the day before. Yeah, that’s one time. I mean, we Yep. However, the employees who do come on board and they receive the let’s call it the red carpet treatment. They’re that much more loyal.
It makes a big difference. We and again, we nobody starts out like that. I mean, we didn’t. And then as we got better at it, we Alan and I were like, what can because when you start a new job, it’s stressful. I don’t care where you go to work. I don’t care how high you are on the food chain. When you start a new job. Day one is so stressful. It’s everything is new, that people are new, everything is new. It’s a very stressful environment to be in. So I want to know, like, what can we do to make it easier? What can we do to make them be more relaxed? hence the reason we don’t ask them to set up their own mishit machine. Oh, yeah. Be able to sit down and that you would be surprised the number of people that I’ve been into, I think that’s a great that is not a great idea. No at all it’s it’s you’re already putting them sort of on the defensive because now they’re like okay pressure I’ve got to get this thing built ready to go logged in and everything else versus just, haha let me sit down and check everything and then let me go they have a plan we have the calendar for them they already know what they’re doing for the first four weeks it’s very well laid out and the the pre work. One of the places that we worked at they had company shirts that they wore every single day so we pre ordered those we would have somebody reach out to the employee like the minute the paper we’re saying hey, this is your shirt option. Let me know what you would like to get we would have their shirts ready to go. Brand new, fresh mousepads we would. It’s the little stuff you know making sure the paper and the pens the desk is all neat and tidy and we had what we called a swag bag. It had like a gift card in it to a restaurant or a coffee shop that was close by, you know a company koozie coffee mug, little things like that we bought. We started getting multipurpose tools for the guys that were field techs. Just it’s I mean you’re not spend them probably more than 40 bucks. But having them come in there, we put it in a little bag with the tissue paper on the hole, whatever. And I’m not super crafty or whatever. So I mean it’s just in the bag with some stuff. But it makes such a huge impact and people just appreciate that you made an effort and you’re excited for them to be there
any other challenges for anybody or want to share your process?
I so bad just want to call on our person with a very hard name to pronounce but I’m afraid to embarrass myself.
People are very quiet today. Yeah,
well, I don’t really have much of a process I think I don’t know if he was talking about me or not when he said,
I can’t pronounce Alyssa. Even though it’s called Brian.
Yeah, I go. Hi. I’m Alyssa when I’m under right. Well, we took on, we actually have your guys’s on on Play onboarding, documentation and ice Did in our past portable, we don’t really have much of a process period. Know much of no matter how many times we really try to implement it. I started my first project on autotask, um, for employee onboarding, and I thought was pretty detailed for the amount of employees that we have in our small house smaller businesses, but even then we still don’t really, we don’t really have many processes and we really follow we just kind of
do it. It’s kind of we’re just kind of a mess. But overall, it’s, we’re trying,
I will tell you sizing growth plans matter tremendously when it comes to the importance of process and documentation. I am I am not as purist as people accuse me of being if you’re a two man shop. I don’t care a whole lot about process agreeing the big stuff when they close a ticket, how to invoice You’re good. If you’re a five minute shop, it begins to become more important and especially if you’re a five minute shop who’s looking at six and seven this year. Those processes, including the employee onboarding process are going to be key to getting them onboard and productive as quickly as possible. Because when you’re small, there is nothing harder than adding the next employee looking. Right now we’re looking at hiring full time employee number three, that’s a decision we’ve been circling for 12 months trying to make sure now is the right time. It’s a big deal and knowing that you have a great onboarding process makes it that much easier that you’re going to have confidence is going to work out as well as the course hiring and screening process we reviewed two months ago for it. If you did download our employee onboarding documentation, just FYI, it was updated and added to yesterday. Last night to be specific because I was I always end up these projects take sorry, these presentations take more time than ever expect some always cleaning up the process as I see it. I’ll ask mark. Hey, how’s it Preston? She’s the Oh, what about this, this and this? What has happened is is Brooke has been improving clients process. This is not updating her templates. Oh, crap. I can add these things. These are great ideas that worked out well, such as using the project. That’s something that happened in the last six months. Seven months. Yeah. All right. Well, we’ll do our quick wrap up. Thank you all for participating and joining us.
I just can’t attend monthly through this date together.
We’ve been trying to do the last Wednesday’s of the month. This is the time slot that works for me. We’re going to keep it super informal next month and just do a roundtable tools for IT services. Obviously we’ll have a long talk about documentation tools. We have a lot of it glue users. I would love to hear from more people. Well what are the other tools? How do they work? Do you recommend them we can even Covered PSA RMM other weird stuff. I would love just to call it a survey. Now, this is an idea that I literally had two hours ago and traces making faces. So what’s a you, Tracy?
making faces? Well, this is a very hot topic in any of the Facebook forums lower. It seems like that comes up a couple times a month. What tools are you using? I’m a little worried.
I don’t want
I don’t know how I feel about having vendors as part of this more honest discussion if we locked them out and we will have to be a little extra be extra vigilant that they don’t get sneak in there
is maybe maybe with Tracy on that one. All right.
So we’ll make that note. No tools vendors for this and please.
Yeah, cuz they’ll take over the microphone and we’ll get them out of there.
We have a mute button and they can always watch the recording to say who’s saying what And I thought this would be a nice, easy for me to facilitate versus preparing your presentation. To keep this on time and I apologize again for rescheduling this presentation from last month to now had to be done. So if you’re looking for other resources on topics like this at our website, slash category slash HR takes you straight to the Human Resources employee cluding employee onboarding. It is a members only section though. But there is a free trial if you want to check it out. See what else is there you have access to everything from there. You’re welcome to contact me directly, just Eureka at Eureka bosses comm or there’s a phone number. And if you got here via someplace besides it, Doug, that is our shortcode right there. fb.com slash groups slash it, Doug. Anybody have any other parting thoughts before we all say the awkward goodbyes?
I actually have one question. Yeah. Are you guys have I know you guys have documentation for a new client onboarding. And that’s something that’s that I am really, really, really trying to push. Well, we all are with third coast. We’re really trying to start doing that more. Is there going to be something like this for that? Because I saw your documentation, and it’s super detailed. And I downloaded it, and I am in love with it. But we’re such a small organization that I feel like a lot of it didn’t pertain to us specifically. So I kind of wanting to like maybe get something broken down a little bit because Okay, I am clueless other than what I learned from brookley. So I really am just like, I’m really interested in that.
So there was a recording from one we did think it might have been 2019 six. So on our website. Do I have it pulled up here. Let’s just walk you through it real quick. And then I can also give you some other specific pointers. My site is incredible. All sites are incredibly slow when I’m on a video conference. So let’s see how painful This is. I went through our website during the process like comm resources and the it dug section because that presentation was for it, Doug. We recorded it. There’s the employee onboarding announcement, hiring Visio right there client onboarding webinar. Okay. So there is some explanations and details there. Along with it 48 minutes of juicy goodness that it kind of goes over, but it still talks. Client onboarding is a really big topic. So it still talks at a high level about the big concepts we’re forgetting when we do these and honestly, it goes a lot to the same thing we talked about in employee onboarding, which is what are you doing before How are you making the client feel?
If that doesn’t do it for you,
you’re welcome to reach out, we can do another one if you like. Especially if you can think of a way to cover the types of details you’d like to see, because I’m sure others are thinking the exact same thing. It’s just hard to pack in the whole thing into 60 minutes, right. And another piece of advice I have is I agree, it’s really hard to adopt that one as is. Take a highlighter, green, yellow, red, or use highlighter and word. Things that you want to adopt as is put them in green things you’re like, there’s no way I can get to this next 12 months, put them in red, and things you would like to start doing put in yellow. And start working through through things that way. Because any process that gets you from A to Z, regardless of which steps, just skip is a good process. Right? And then you do your post mortem meeting and you go Okay, what can we do better next time and you begin To pull more of those yellow things into the green
Yeah, how do you eat an elephant? One bite at a time.
Oh, I also have this I’m gonna I’m gonna try using a I’m gonna use a bad word in public and they’re very good at this. I have a team channel called shit Alan says. And then there is the many phrases that I’ve stolen from other people smarter than me and it’s Don’t let perfection get in the way of progress. So even if you do a third of the process, that’s amazing.
It’s better than no process. I got to start somewhere. So what I tell people all the time, you’ve got to start somewhere even if it’s just make the baby steps Don’t wait until it’s perfect because then you’ll never get it done. Right.
Keep fighting a good fight Alyssa
Alright guys, thank you for your time and attention. I will try to get this video uploaded to our website. By Friday at the latest, let’s faithworks next winter
and we’ll see you next time.
See you guys. Thank you, everyone. Bye