The nature and causes of individual behaviour in social situations should be the foundation of any on-boarding programme.

Social psychology studies show that when we hold beliefs, attitudes or cognitions which are different from the group, we experience dissonance. This is an inconsistency and causes a discomfort which motivates us to change our thoughts, beliefs or attitudes. It can also cause us to selectively attend to information that supports one of our beliefs and ignores the other (selective exposure). This happens because humans are social and desire the feeling of belonging. We need to maintain a positive sense of personal and social identity.

This need comes from a basic instinct: survival. We need the group to support our growth and to learn. We are social learners, we learn and develop from others. One of the best theories about this premise is Bandura’s Social Learning Theory which states that people learn from one another via observation, imitation, and modelling. Therefore, individuals do not automatically observe the behaviour of a model and imitate it. Bandura believed in "reciprocal determinism," the notion that behaviour is learned through observational learning from the environment around us. The discovery of mirror neurons supports the theory of social learning as mirror neurons constitute a neurological basis for imitation.

But sometimes these behaviours don’t occur which is where technology could help us. Numerous studies show good quality evidence of Virtual Reality efficacy for different social-psychological diseases because it is a safe and controlled environment for people. An example of that is a 2018 study which investigated mimicry in autism spectrum disorder (ASD) within a two-dimensional virtual reality environment. Participants played an imitation game with a socially engaged avatar and socially disengaged avatar. Participants mimicked the kinematics of the avatars' movements, however, autistic participants mimicked less. Social engagement did not modulate mimicry in either group. The results demonstrate the feasibility of using virtual reality to induce mimicry and suggest mimicry differences in ASD may also occur when interacting with avatars. Can you imagine the Virtual Reality potential if we take it into other fields? 

We have constructed our everis UK on-boarding process on the foundations of social psychology, the potential of VR and the studies of Harvard University about career transitions. The on-boarding plan covers social-psychology (with buddies, mentors, social activities, celebrations...) and the technology everis can offer us through different tools like VR. 

Our on boarding plan is the first contact with the magic of everis as an employee. A key moment on the employee journey map which has to be a differential and positive experience that transcend beyond everis. We heavily focus on a strong and successful on boarding on the employee roadmap.

The main aim of our on-boarding process is to introduce new joiners to the everis culture and values and make sure they feel the warm support of the everis family. The programme also allows them to live our magic and provide them with crucial information, knowledge of our business and the necessary tools to develop their skills.

All of our new colleagues have the opportunity to attend an introductory session on their first day at the company that includes a Virtual Reality experience. Our Virtual reality experience creates a personalised approach to the on-boarding process because employees can interact with virtual features within an immersive environment.

For us, this has been incredibly useful to familiarise our employees with our business, but it also enables them to feel part of the group. This allows us to fulfil our role in HR from the very beginning of an employee's journey at everis.