Virtual onboarding when starting a new job

It’s been a busy few weeks for me, and an overwhelming few weeks (in a good way). Whilst COVID-19 has undoubtedly been an unexpected event in all of our lives, I also rather surprisingly decided to switch jobs during this pandemic and have since experienced virtual onboarding into my new role.

I have been in my new role as Campaign Executive for four weeks now, and my role is in a specific area of SEO (search engine optimisation) called outreach/offsite/link building. I was a bit concerned that it would be a bit samey, but actually so far I’ve learnt that there is so much to it which keeps it interesting.

On Friday, I was exhausted. In all honesty, I think I’m working harder than I did in my previous role – but equally, I am feeling more driven and more exhilarated and more eager to push now. I am excited, I am ready to go and I am eager to learn. But yes, my brain is worn out from all the learning and this weekend I am relaxing.

My thoughts on virtual onboarding

To be honest, I had my concerns about virtual onboarding. It’s so different to being sat in an office, meeting people properly and being able to learn or ask questions more openly.

However, I must say that Seeker have done a wonderful job so far. It has been a bit weird in some ways, yes. But that is as I expected.

Before starting, I was sent a whole load of things to get me going. Including a new chair for my desk, a laptop, desktop and lots of accessories to help with working from home. Plus, the added extra of some chocolates was well received! Our HR manager has been beyond helpful, giving me the tools and support I need to feel comfortable and feel included within the business.

For me, it seemed as though Seeker had really thought about how they can take care of employees even when working from home, and this was evident from the minute I signed the contract right through til the end of my fourth week.

My first week I was on a strict 11-3 only working day, as a way to ease me in and not wear me out. Throughout that week our HR manager ensured I met every team within the business so that I could be fully introduced and learn all I needed to know about the company, teams and people. This whole week was meticulously planned and was of great help for me as it gave me a chance to get settled and navigate my way into this new role/company.

Video calls with different teams and individuals became so normal and so frequent during my first two weeks, that I now feel that I’m no longer petrified of signing into Hangouts or Zoom and having to make awkward small talk.

As the weeks have gone on, I’ve been doing lots of training to try and get me up to speed. And I’ll admit, this was a concern. I kept thinking “how will I learn?”, “how will we track progress?”, “will I just be forgotten?” Now, I will not say it’s all been completely smooth – my team is BUSY. There’s been times when none of us really know what’s next or times when I’ve worried that I might feel a bit excluded, but overall it’s been quite smooth.

The whole environment at Seeker is one of hard work and equal support, and so my manager and my team have been working their asses off whilst also ensuring I am being given the necessary training to be able to become a fully fledged link builder.

There is so much to learn, but it’s all been mapped out on Asana for me to tick off and the whole team has been incredibly supportive and involved. I’ve read blogs, watched in-house training videos, external training videos, shadowed employees and most importantly I’ve been learning on the job.

One thing that probably suits my style of working and learning, is that now I’ve been shown the basics, I am being set to work! Like I said, my brain is mentally a bit frazzled. But, I am loving being able to get stuck in and being given client work to run with.

From next week I am now properly involved with clients and have my own campaigns to run and take hold of. This is terrifying, exciting, and also very necessary in order for me to learn and grow and support the business.

So far, I cannot fault the way that the whole company has ran with working from home and virtual onboarding of new employees. It fills me with confidence that going forward I am going to be supported mentally, personally and professionally – which is what matters most to me.

I also met my team on Wednesday for dinner, which was really nice and gave me a chance to get to know them better as people. I am SO excited to be part of an all female team smashing it in the world of link building!!

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