At ActiveCampaign, we pride ourselves on offering the best support for users across our platform. That offer also extends to our own internal teams while we use the platform. Every employee receives amazing perks at ActiveCampaign, one of which is training in the platform, so we all understand how it works first-hand. We spend parts of our first two weeks onboarding and learning the different parts of the platform and the business so we are better prepared for our individual jobs.
With a high volume of new hires comes the need for more formalized training and onboarding for departments. So everyone feels they are getting the most out of their time as new hires, our Design Team built out an automated, customized onboarding process within the ActiveCampaign platform to guide new hires through their first couple of weeks.
Based on feedback from design team employees that underwent the company-wide new hire training, there were some main themes identified that helped the team realize employees might need some more tailored guidance. Feedback included a need for a bit more guidance for their individual roles, more documentation for new hires joining the team, and ways to make training and meeting teammates more remote-friendly.
“We wanted to leverage the platform for our onboarding to make our leadership team more efficient in the communications we’re sending. Before I was setting calendar reminders to gather feedback, and that just wasn’t going to scale. With making our onboarding more robust, and moving it into ActiveCampaign, I already know that teammates will have clear expectations and guidelines from day 1.” – Kuu Hubbard, Product Design Manager
How does the design team use the platform?
There are so many different ways to use the ActiveCampaign platform. The design team took a few powerful features and incorporated them into our automation and campaign builders to bring each new hire along a helpful, memorable onboarding experience:
- Welcome emails. These emails are used to welcome the team, help them understand where internal resources are, and make sure they are set up for success. This goes a layer deeper than the company-wide training new hires get, as it is fully focused on the design team and also tailored to that person’s individual role on the team.
- Meet the team. These emails introduce who’s who on the design team, provide new hires with an understanding of what working on the team is like, and what their future at ActiveCampaign could look like. They receive things like org charts and key goals for the different teams in the design department.
- Our customers & competition. Emails containing customer information, customer story videos, and competitive intel are sent to the design team so they can get to know customers on a deeper level. They are also sent other internal resources so they can get a better understanding of what our company goals are and why we might have them focus on different work.
When new hires are ready for team-specific onboarding, they are assigned different automation paths depending on their role – whether they’re on the Product Design team or Brand Design team – and their level on the team. Using custom fields and tags, the team is able to assign different content and workflows to that person that is applicable to the work they will be doing at ActiveCampaign.
To save time but still offer personalized training, conditional content is used to send different copy, images, or calls to action to individuals without the need to build out multiple emails. This makes iterating and editing these workflows that much easier! Within the emails, personalization tags are used, calling upon those attributes that make each onboarding experience unique.
When building out new emails, the team leverages the newly improved content manager within the platform. The content manager houses all images that can be used across any part of the automation workflows, so it’s easy to access them in the future, and stay on-brand.
Once the team deployed the first iteration of onboarding, they looked at what else could be done to make the process more efficient and helpful for new team members. Predictive sending uses machine learning to deliver content to a person’s inbox at the time of day they’re most likely to open and engage with the content. As someone moves through the training automation, the sending becomes smarter and smarter, and content is sent to new hires at the most optimal time for them to take advantage of their new resources.
Throughout the onboarding process, feedback is routinely requested at 30, 60, and 90 day intervals. Once the time comes for feedback, a reminder email is sent to the new hire, if feedback is provided, a notification is sent to the design leadership team so they can learn how a new hire is doing right away, and step in if help is needed. This feedback is curated and applied to future versions of the onboarding as necessary.
Iterate everything, always.
In the spirit of staying true to our core values, the design team has a robust plan of what’s to come in the future for the team’s onboarding process.
The team is planning to take these automations beyond new hire onboarding, and instead use automations and campaigns features to send out broad team communications, updates, and news. Career development is a focal point as well. The team aims to help both new hires and veterans understand their path to promotion, and make sure they’re on the right track with their goals and expectations.
Product training is also on the list. As opposed to just the onboarding process, the team is looking into training on specific features and functionality inside the ActiveCampaign platform. The possibilities are endless and can even include FAQs about upcoming review cycles, help promote open roles on the team, and even remind the team to take their much deserved vacation days!
We love how inventive our teams are here at ActiveCampaign, and cannot wait to see how this example of ingenuity is adopted across other departments. By the way, we are always looking for new, amazing talent, so be sure to check out our open roles, and you could potentially go through your own automated onboarding!