Everything you need to know about Employee Onboarding

Many companies today vastly underestimate the importance of proper employee onboarding. Statistics show that 22% of companies don’t have any formal onboarding program in place; only 49% of companies have a somewhat successful onboarding process.


An unsuccessful onboarding program can have a negative impact on the employees who may feel disconnected from the rest of the team or not stick around right after the process.  Furthermore, companies without employee onboarding programs end up spending a lot more due to higher employee turnover rates.

So, onboarding should be designed to assist your new hire in being comfortable and confident in the organization. A systematic and strategic approach is required to turn your new hire into a productive team member.

Employee Onboarding

Employee onboarding is the process of introducing a newly hired employee to the company and its culture, team members, and managers. It is about familiarising them with their work and role in the organization.

The purpose of onboarding is to ensure the employee feels at home, develops connections with the team and manager, and moves into productive work mode swiftly.

HR specialists believe the onboarding process should continue for at least a year for long-term employee retention. Bad experiences during the critical first few days and weeks can result in high attrition.

Why is Employee Onboarding so important?

Companies invest a considerable amount of their money, time, and resources in the hiring process. Yet, for various reasons, many people leave their jobs during their first few days. Poor employee onboarding could be one of the significant causes, as they do not feel welcomed into the new setting.

With proper onboarding, new employees adjust better to their roles, establish good relationships, improve their performance, and are happy in their jobs.

Secrets of Employee onboarding

4 Cs to design a successful onboarding process:

  1. Compliance: Introducing an outline of company policies, some basic legal and policy-related rules and regulations, confidentiality requirements, safety regulations, and more.
  2. Clarification: Ensuring employees understand their roles, responsibilities, and expectations.
  3. Culture: Inculcating belongingness to the culture of the organization, its vision, and its mission.
  4. Connection: Integration into the teams, forming networks and interpersonal relationships.

These are four steps to create a strategic onboarding process.

Employee Onboarding vs Employee Orientation

Employee onboarding and orientation are two completely different events but with similar goals. The aim is to ultimately help a new employee feel happy and secure in the company.

Employee orientation is a one-time general event that welcomes all new employees to the company. In contrast, employee onboarding is a series of role-specificity and team-specific events and training in which new hires become contributing employees.

Build a welcoming new Employee Onboarding Process

Employee onboarding is all about induction and building relationship with new employees. They will learn about company policies, systems, and protocols and meet their managers and teammates. Understand their role and responsibilities and settle comfortably into the company.

Onboarding is initiated when a candidate accepts the job offer and ends when they are fully integrated into the system. Not just HR but also the colleagues and management team need to be part of the process, which can last up to 12 months.

Here is a comprehensive and effective onboarding program for welcoming your new hires into the company.

Hiring Process

  • Start your onboarding program right from the hiring stage. The interviewees get a fair idea about the company during this stage. Ensure the process is as smooth as possible. Give detailed and precise job descriptions and hiring process information.
  • Give full attention at the interviews, answer all queries and communicate process details at every hiring stage.
  • Send a warm welcome letter along with an offer letter to the selected candidate.
  • Discuss salary, benefits, policies, and expectations, so the new hire has a clear idea about their duties and responsibilities.

Before the first day of your employee

  • The waiting time before the new hire joins the office is a period of uncertainty. Keep your new hire engaged by getting through with all the necessary paperwork.
  • Ask the new employee to visit the office. Show them their desk and give them an office tour to lessen the first-day jitters when they join work.
  • Set up their official online accounts and provide them with the necessary tech equipment.

On their first day in the office

  • A day before employees join, ensure their desk is clean, sanitized, and has all the necessary stationary. Remind the respective team and manager about their joining.
  • Set the onboarding stage for new employees into the organization with a warm welcome.
  • Assign someone from the team to be with the new employees, introduce them to the team and give a tour of the office, restroom, and kitchen.
  • Let the new hire set up their desk, laptop, and passwords. Ensure they are comfortable at their desk.
  • Arrange an orientation program with their manager and HR to elaborate on the code of conduct, office policies, rewards and recognition programs, and employee benefits they would receive.

During the first week

  • Now that the new hire has adapted to the office set-up, it is time to set role-based goals and objectives for the next three months, six months, and a year.
  • Arrange essential training programs to get started. Assign tasks, provide feedback on their completed work, and mentor them based on their potential to give their best.

During the first three months

  • By now, the employees have become an integral part of the organization.
  • Have regular one-on-one meetings to keep track of their progress, give regular feedback, and address their immediate concerns.
  • Review the expectation of the organization and the employees, and ensure that it aligns.

The First Year

  • The employee has connected with the work culture, peers, and managers for a year. If the new hire is motivated and has had a satisfying experience at the company, you would know the onboarding process was a success. 
  • Discuss their career advancement plans, and acquaint them with what their future in the company looks like.
  • A positive onboarding process can tip the scale in the company’s favour. It will contribute to the employee retention process and overall productivity.

An effective onboarding ensures the new hire is equipped with adequate information and tools to become a productive member of the organization quickly. With a good onboarding experience, the employee can adjust to the organization’s fabric and develop a long-lasting relationship with the company.

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We are a team of content and feature writers with an expertise in the subject of employee engagement and Rewards & Recognition strategy within corporate. Our team comprises of creative writers and subject matter experts who love de-constructing various facets of employee engagement and recognition.