Step-by-Step Employee Onboarding Checklist for the HR Department

Vikram Deo

Vikram Deo

Senior editor

Parul Saxena

Chief editor

Last updated: April 23, 2021

Employees are one of the most important assets of an organization. When you hire new employees, it is critical to provide employees with a positive onboarding experience. In this article, we have created an employee onboarding checklist to help you do that. 

Organizations go to extreme lengths to find the perfect fit for a job role. However, the work doesn’t stop there. Suppose that your search for a talented employee has finally come to an end, and the new superstar of your organization is all set to join your team. Here is a step-by-step employee checklist your HR department can use to make the onboarding experience easy and fun for your new hires.

1. Send Welcome Emails

The first step is to send your new employee a welcome email. Most companies send a welcome email to the candidate two weeks before they officially join the company. 

You can use welcome emails to tell the candidate your company’s story. You can talk about how it began, its journey, and how it got where it is right now. You can also take the opportunity to introduce your new recruit to the company culture and what they can expect through their journey. You may choose to send either a single, detailed email or a series of emails over a one-week or two-week period. 

It will help to include the following information in your welcome emails: 

  • Start with a warm welcome message with a photo or a video that reflects the culture of your company. 
  • Give a quick introduction to the candidate about your company values.  
  • You can also ask them how they’re feeling about being a part of the organization and if they have any questions. 
  • Also, you can include some tips that will help the candidate work comfortably and have fun.

A good Human Resources tool can be of great help for sending out welcome emails to new recruits. It allows you to create and schedule your welcome emails so that they reach your new hires at the right time. 

2. Send Important Onboarding Information

Close to the new hire’s start date, you can send them a detailed email with all the necessary onboarding information. This might not be necessary if you’re a small office in a single location. However, if you’re a large organization with multiple offices or one large office, it might help to provide the new employee with the following information: 

  • Documents that they may need to submit on the first day
  • Dress code
  • How to find the office
  • Who to contact when they reach the office
  • Where they might be able to get their computer or laptop 
  • How they can find their desk
  • Lunch and break times
  • An introduction to their team

Looking for HR Software? Check out SoftwareSuggest’s list of the best HR software solutions.

3. Inform Your Existing Employees

Having a new person in the office can be a different experience for your current employees as well. Therefore, it might be a good idea to let your employees know who they’re going to see and a little something about their background. You can create an in-company email campaign using your HR software, and send an email to all your employees with the name, photo, and a brief description of the new hire. 

Not only will it make your employees aware that a new employee will be joining them soon, but it will also prepare them to make the new hire feel welcome. 

Also Read: 20+ Effective Employee Engagement Ideas for Managers

4. Introduce Them To Their New Co-workers

On the first day of the new employee, you must introduce them to their key co-workers such as their teammates, seniors, etc. Using HR and payroll software like Gusto, you can also send a detailed team overview to your new hire before they join. This will make it easy for them to get acquainted with the team when they actually come on board. 

Once they join, you can assign them at least one of the following to make them feel more comfortable:  

  • Work Buddy: Assign them a work buddy who can help them through their first few weeks in a new environment and show them the ropes.  
  • Mentor: If you’ve hired a fresher or someone who does not have a lot of prior work experience,  you can assign them a mentor. The mentor should help them with the challenges they face while adapting to a new, professional work environment. 

The first two weeks of joining can be a period of great adjustment for a new hire. Therefore, you must ensure that you give them as much help and support as they need to adjust and adapt themselves to their new surroundings. 

5. Orientation Presentations

When the new hire joins, you can give them a detailed presentation of the various aspects of the organization.  You can start the presentation with a welcome note and then go on to cover the basics, such as an overview of the company and its culture. You can give them a demo of certain tools and platforms that they might need to use from time to time. You can also introduce them to the company’s HR policies and procedures. 

If your new hire is going to work remotely, as is increasingly becoming the norm these days, you might want to give them a  presentation on what the remote team culture in your company is like. You can inform them about how to stay connected in a remote environment, and how they can expect the communication to happen. 

The orientation is a great time to get new hires excited about the benefits of working at your company. You can also include a word from the CEO or director of the company and talk about the organization’s history, achievements, and goals, and how the new hire will be a part of the narrative. 

When you have multiple new hires, you can conduct these presentations in batches in a classroom/conference room set-up. However, in the case of a single joiner or a remote employee, you can also send them these orientation presentations through email using HR software like Gusto. 

Also Read: Ultimate Guide to Choosing Presentation Software

6. Roadmap and Expectations

Do not immediately start the process of setting and communicating goals and objectives for your new hire. You may end up overwhelming them. Give them some space and time to adjust, adapt, and get acquainted with their new environment. 

Instead, you can create a roadmap for the new hire using your HR and payroll software that gives the employee some idea about what is expected of them in the initial phase of their employment.  

7. Keep Checking In On Them

Keep checking in on the new hire from time to time to ensure that they are not having a difficult time adjusting to their new surroundings. You can also ask their work buddy or mentor to give you periodic updates. Be mindful of the fact that no two employees are the same. Some can adjust to a new environment easily within a couple of days, while some might even take a few months.  

Wrapping it up

Have a clear plan in place about how you are going to onboard the employee. Give your new hires as much information as you can before they join your team. This will prepare them to join your organization and will give them an idea about what they can expect in the initial days of their employment. Of course, you must be careful to not overwhelm them with information. 

Consider using an HR software solution to enhance the employee onboarding experience. Do you use employee onboarding software currently? Do let us know what you think of it in the comments below. 

Vikram Deo
With an experience of 11 years, in the industry, and having the uncanny ability to convert difficult concepts into engaging content, Vikram has the ability to perfectly insert gusto into content. When he is not researching about new marketing concepts and writing to attract, he enjoys the occasional fictional books and loves playing with his 2 dogs When he is not researching about new marketing concepts and writing to attract, he enjoys the occasional fictional books and loves playing with his 2 dogs"

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