Contrary to what people commonly think, the onboarding process has nothing to do with your marketing or sales process.
The ONBOARDING process is supposed to be the first step of your delivery system
The onboarding process comes into play when the client has already booked your services and is, basically, your business card. It is the way you officially present yourself and your business to your clients. It’s the first way you bring value to them. It’s the moment you have to demonstrate they made the right choice by trusting in you and buying your services.
For all these reasons, you need to have a high-quality onboarding process and you can’t neglect any steps.
So…here are my 5 points to proofread (and elevate) your process:
HAVE YOU AUTOMATED YOUR ONBOARDING?
- Life may be busy sometimes and time passes so fast. Having an automated onboarding process prevents you from forgetting any steps. Can you imagine a client buying from you, and you taking days before getting back with a welcome email or clear instructions about what happens next? Can you imagine the clients’ frustration and doubts about their choice in such a case?
- This is how to proceed: map your process. Imagine what happens step-by-step from when your clients book to when they are fully on board. What do you have to deliver? How can you set up clear expectations and boundaries from the beginning? How can you communicate with them?….
- Choose a way to automate. I use Dubsado as a CRM. There’s a little bit of work in the set-up phase, but once set up, it saves you tons of time (interested in Dubsado setup? Click here). You can choose a different tool, if you like it. There are a lot of options out there. But automate the process
Personally, I have an automated onboarding workflow, so my clients are able to sign the contract, pay the invoice, receive the welcome pack and access their portal where I have uploaded a copy of their documents for reference
HAVE YOU PREPARED A WELCOME PACK?
- A welcome pack is a clear and concise leaflet (ebook, brochure, …whatever) where you welcome your clients and make their relationship with you easy.
- You need to include (just an example – you will add anything relevant here):
The next steps to be fully on board and start working effectively with you
Your working hours and how to reach out to you
The info (passwords, platforms, contacts, …) your clients need to pass on to you to allow you to work on their business
Your average response times
The method you will use to communicate (and keep any info together)
The access to your clients portal
HAVE YOU INFORMED YOUR TEAM AND PRESENTED YOUR TEAM TO YOUR CLIENTS?
- If you work with a team, you need to remember the following steps:
If your clients will be in touch with your team, you need to introduce them. Your clients need to know who is in charge of what and how to contact them. Your team needs to know who your clients are and have all the relevant info to perform their tasks.
If your clients do not work directly with your team, you need to make your team aware of the new clients, their goals, their expectations, plan with them how to help your new clients, share their business info and assign tasks and roles to the right people.
HAVE YOU SCHEDULED ANY RECURRING MEETINGS IN YOUR AGENDA?
- You need to cultivate and support your clients. Feeling abandoned is not something we want them to experience. For this reason, you may want to schedule regular meetings for project updates or simply for a coffee chat and a quick work overview.
Agree with your clients on regular appointments, so they know what they can expect.
Prepare an agenda for each meeting and share it with your clients, so they can add any relevant topic.
Schedule your meetings in your calendar.
Automate regular reminders, so your clients won’t forget.
HAVE YOU UPLOADED A CUSTOMIZED PLAN IN YOUR PM TOOL?
- All your clients will come to your business with a goal and I am sure you are well-prepared to support them at the highest possible level. A high-level service means you have a plan to deliver your services. If you don’t, you need to work on it immediately. You can’t improvise.
Prepare, update or customize your plan.
Upload it into your PM tool. As a PM tool, I use and love ClickUp (would you like a customized ClickUp Setup? Click here).
My steps are:
Upload a plan in the client folder (my process is automated, so I have a new folder automatically opened as soon as the client signs the contract in Dubsado).
Assign due dates and tasks to team members.
Open a client dashboard to allow the client to see what’s happening, be aware of what we are working on, be able to chat with me, and have direct access to their Dubsado Portal with all the forms they need to complete or sign.
In Clickup, I have pre-made templates according to the type of service I am offering, so I just need to upload the right template and customize it according to my clients’ needs.
Are you an entrepreneur working alone or with a small team? If you need help with planning, reaching goals, setting up systems, processes, and SOPs, and optimizing your tools, feel free to schedule a coffee chat to discover how I can help
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