Bayes students turn project to reality as hybrid onboarding process is adopted in the workplace

Four students on the Master’s in Innovation, Creativity and Leadership course create onboarding scheme in three months.

A new hybrid onboarding process designed by Bayes Business School Master’s students as part of a project has been successfully adopted by a European business.

In November 2021, Zsanett Andresin, Natasha Cox, Rashmi Rajpal, Daniel Liendo Cana were set a task as part of the Master’s in Innovation, Creativity and Leadership’s creative design thinking module to redesign hybrid working for one organisation. The team worked with Cantab Predictive Intelligence, a data science business, to redesign their onboarding process for new staff.

The team’s model included receiving a personalised welcome card from the CEO, a welcome pack with personalised merchandise, social roulette app which matched you to a colleague for lunch, and chose the cuisine, a Task and Culture buddy to mentor you throughout your onboarding process, plus welcome messages from colleagues.

Mr Liendo Cana said: “We needed to identify a gap in the company and how to create an experience for the new hires, which covered the organisation’s culture – with most of the team based in Croatia – and its working practices. We had to enhance the 10-day onboarding experience and were able to build on their current process and have interviews with recent hires.”

Ms Cox: “We found out that Cantab had a very young team, with a lot of family-orientated employees, and we wanted that to be replicated in our offering so that before they step into the office, they feel connected to the company. We wanted to tap into the holistic wellbeing of the employee.”

Ms Andresin added: “We were fortunate that the CEO at Cantab was already thinking about evaluating the onboarding process. It was a good chance for us to do something meaningful and deliver real value to the company.”

The group of Bayes students Rashmi Rajpal, Natasha Cox, Zsanett Andresin, Daniel Liendo Cana

The team, faced with the challenges of remote working themselves, worked over hours to ensure they hit the deadline, using course modules on creative problem solving and creative writing to apply what they learned.

The students, who have backgrounds in the performing arts, economics, banking, and hospitality, were mentored by Jessica Andrews throughout the process. Siniša Slijepčević, the CEO of Cantab PI has since been in touch with the group, citing the project as ‘very valuable’ and praising it for the ‘positive energy and creativity’ it brought to his team.

The students said their studies and experience with Cantab played a key role in developing key skills including a deeper reflection on working practices, expanding how they apply their studies to working situations, and team working.

Ms Andresin said: “We laid the foundations from the beginning about what we wanted to achieve. That identity helped us when faced with the challenges of hybrid working and we needed to be adaptable as all companies are.

Ms Cox said: “We are from all over the world and this project gave us to opportunity to work together. This course has helped me think about ways I can take this corporate way of thinking into the creative world and has laid the foundations of leadership responsibilities.”

Ms Rajpal added: “This course has set the values we want to uphold to clients. We learned to defer judgement which meant there were no restrictions but structure. We grew from this approach.”

Professor Neil Maiden, Professor of Digital Creativity and module leader, said: “It is fantastic to see students combining new knowledge and skills in creative thinking, design thinking and service design so quickly. The client’s adoption of the resulting new service is testament to the practical focus on our teaching. Bravo!”


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