Apps for leaders: Appical

Onboarding is tricky. This app makes it easier, writes Perry Timms

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One simple web search reveals 659,000 entries that link to the key words ‘onboarding’ and ‘apps’, and none of them relate to cruise liners! Many of them, however, refer to attracting users to a particular app. But, in the world of work and HR, ‘onboarding’ means ‘induction’ – the way in which new employees acquire the necessary knowledge, skills and behaviours to become effective team members in an organization. And, believe it or not, now there are apps that can help with this induction process.

Appical is one of a new breed of software tools suited to the digital nature of our lives. It helps familiarise new staff with their organization, brief them on company culture, and encourage a sense of belonging to their new team. It seeks to lower the productivity lull common when newcomers arrive at a firm, by answering all those initial questions that invariably crop as fresh-starters learn their new role.

Netherlands-based Appical has an impressive client portfolio, including Heineken, Philips, KLM and PepsiCo. And since its inception in 2012, it has built up a range of functions designed to help facilitate the onboarding process.

With its company-jargon dictionary, to-do list, and augmented reality-tour of company location, Appical aims to turn the sometimes protracted candidate-to-employee journey into a quick, useful and inspiring experience.

Unlike most App Store downloads, this is a combined product, which includes your content and Appical’s functionality.

In the near future, almost all onboarding could become a digital experience. If so, this product, like others in the marketplace, will be leading that shift by bringing another piece of the digital transformation jigsaw into our working lives.

— Appical is an iOS and Android app. Request demos and see more at

— Perry Timms is an independent HR/OD practitioner, speaker, writer and CIPD adviser on social media and engagement. Follow him on Twitter @PerryTimms

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