Original Research

Onboarding during the COVID-19 and the future of onboarding within a South African municipality

Jean Oberholzer, Cecile M. Schultz, Karel F. Lessing
SA Journal of Human Resource Management | Vol 22 | a2556 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/sajhrm.v22i0.2556 | © 2024 Jean Oberholzer, Cecile M. Schultz, Karel F. Lessing | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 16 February 2024 | Published: 04 July 2024

About the author(s)

Jean Oberholzer, Department of People Management and Development, Faculty of Management Sciences, Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa
Cecile M. Schultz, Department of People Management and Development, Faculty of Management Sciences, Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa
Karel F. Lessing, Department of People Management and Development, Faculty of Management Sciences, Tshwane University of Technology, Pretoria, South Africa

Abstract

Orientation: Limited literature on onboarding during COVID-19 and the future of onboarding exists.

Research purpose: The purpose of this study was to explore the implementation of employee onboarding during COVID-19, as well as the future of onboarding within a South African municipality.

Motivation for the study: This research was motivated by the difficulties encountered in conducting online employee onboarding during the COVID-19 pandemic, along with the uncertain landscape of onboarding practices within a South African municipality.

Research approach/design and method: The research employed a qualitative approach, conducting interviews with participants from a South African municipality. Thematic analysis was utilised to examine the data.

Main findings: Several themes on onboarding during COVID-19 emerged from the study, including the use of videoconferencing tools, intranet system usage, and more. The main themes of future onboarding were intranet, improving onboarding processes, and face-to-face onboarding. Several interviewees showcased frustration with the implementation of video conferencing tools, and the impact of load shedding. Participants suggested that onboarding practices might evolve beyond the pandemic as technology implementation becomes more commonplace.

Practical/managerial implications: Human resource professionals must be prepared for the future of employee onboarding, embracing the technological advancements that facilitate this process. Failure to keep abreast with new technology will hinder employee onboarding efforts, potentially impeding their ability to effectively integrate new employees.

Contribution/value-add: This study shed light on the state of employee onboarding within a South African municipality, and can assist to improve the onboarding process and render it future fit.


Keywords

COVID-19; human resource; employee onboarding; intranet; videoconferencing tools; technology; work-from-home.

JEL Codes

J24: Human Capital • Skills • Occupational Choice • Labor Productivity; M12: Personnel Management • Executives; Executive Compensation; O15: Human Resources • Human Development • Income Distribution • Migration

Sustainable Development Goal

Goal 8: Decent work and economic growth

Metrics

Total abstract views: 451
Total article views: 195


Crossref Citations

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