Onboarding a New Hire

Setting the Stage for New Employees

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Congratulations on your new hire… now let the onboarding begin!

The process of onboarding new employees can be one of the most important factors in ensuring recently hired employees are engaged and productive in their new position. A positive first day right through to 90 days with your company can help foster employee engagement. A poor onboarding experience can lead to the employee’s resignation, leaving the company to fill the role again.

The first 90 days of your new hire’s experience with your company will set the tone for their success. As a supervisor or manager, you play a critical role in onboarding your new employee, so they have a long tenure with your company. Now is the time to promote your company’s culture and for them to see if your company is where they want to work for years to come. It is important that onboarding is consistent with all new hires.

Here are several key points to cover in those first 90 days to help with a successful onboarding experience:  

Pre-Onboarding – The pre-onboarding period begins from the time the candidate accepts the offer letter until their first day with your company. Prior to their start day, send the employee any required paperwork so they can fill it out in advance and bring it, along with any required supporting documents, on their first day.

Email the new hire information about what their first day will look like, including their arrival time and who to ask for when they arrive. If parking is available, let them know where they can park.

If your new hire is working remotely, ensure that you ship out their computer equipment before their first day, along with information on how to log in so they can get set up and be ready for their first day.

Create excitement with their team by sending an email introduction with the new hire’s name, title, start date and some information about where the employee has worked before and/or share some personal information about what the person likes to do outside of work hours.

Welcoming New Hires – Welcoming new hires to your organization helps them to acclimatize  to your culture. On the employee’s first day, ensure that you or a designated person is available to welcome them to the company. Escort them to their workstation/office and give them a moment to settle in. Afterwards, review the paperwork that was sent to them in advance and ensure that it has been filled out with the required information.

A nice practice is to leave some company items, “swag,” or a welcome card (signed by you and the team) on their desk for when they arrive. Provide them with a notebook and pen so they can write notes on points they will need to remember.

Tour your new employee around the office and show them important places they will need to know – the lunchroom, washrooms, stairs and fire exits, supply room, first aid/defibrillator station, and other departments. On the tour introduce them to their teammates and key members of other teams that they would be working with. Assign a “buddy” for your new hire who can assist them in settling in and answer questions that they may have.

Check-in with the employee throughout the day to see how things are going. Ensure that the new hire has someone to go for lunch with – such as having the buddy take the employee to the lunchroom, or better yet, take the new hire for lunch and get to know them on a personal level.

At the end of the employee’s first day, leave 15 minutes to debrief. Ask them how their day went, if they need anything that wasn’t provided, and answer any questions they may have. The new employee needs to know that you’re their biggest champion and are rooting for their success!

Introduce the new hire to your company by attending an orientation. Company orientations allow employees to meet colleagues from other departments and provide them with information on the company history and the executive team, as well as the benefits and perks of working for your company.

Role-Specific Training – This is the most important phase of onboarding. The employee  will familiarize themselves with the job they have been hired to do. Set expectations for the employee with outcomes for the following week, along with expectations after 30, 60, and 90 days, so the employee knows what they need to achieve in their probationary period. Depending on the employee’s learning style, you may want to have the employee shadow another team member, learn from a position manual, or a combination of both.

Onboarding is an important step in ensuring your new hire’s success and will assist them in adapting to the company culture. Onboarding will also help improve your company’s employee retention and can make an impact on your company’s bottom line. Continue to gather feedback about how you can improve the onboarding experience for new hires.


The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of Olympia Trust Company, Olympia Financial Group Inc., or any of its affiliates. The author’s views and opinions are based upon information they consider reliable, but neither Olympia Trust Company, Olympia Financial Group Inc. nor any of its affiliates, warrant its completeness or accuracy, and it should not be relied upon as such.

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