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Complete Onboarding Checklist for New Hires

Employees come and go; some rapidly move on to another job, while others become part of the company family for the next two-to-three decades. Regardless, it’s important to ensure a smooth transition for each new hire. Here is an onboarding checklist to ensure you have everything you need when new recruits join the team.

Pre-Employment Onboarding Checklist

The following should be completed before an employee’s first paid day of work.

1. Submit a Requisition Form

A requisition form ensures the new employees have all the tools, equipment and other resources they need by the time they begin their first day. Be sure all forms are submitted to the appropriate departments and are approved by the higher-ups. This should be done during the employees’ training period.

Requisition forms should be at the top of the onboarding checklist. New employees lacking in resources can lead to downtime. Not to mention, it may give a first impression that the company is disorganized.

2. Send a Welcome Info Package

Every new-hire onboarding checklist should include a welcome package. This should provide the basic information new hires need to know; it may be sent as either a digital file or physical printout. The welcome package should include information on:

  • The company background, complete with its history and services/products provided
  • Company policies regarding sick leave, clocking in/out, etc.
  • Actions that may constitute a warning, suspension or immediate termination
  • Pay information, including pay periods and methods of payment
  • Company etiquette when interacting with customers
  • A contact list containing the phone numbers and/or company emails of management and the staff

While optional, the welcome package can include some small gift items for new recruits. For example, stationery items or even a gift card to a local store or restaurant. This can boost morale from the get-go.

3. Complete the Background Checks and Paperwork

Be certain new employees undergo all the necessary checks as mandated by federal and state requirements. The company may have its own forms and checks for internal use. Forms that may be required before employment include:

  • Criminal background check
  • Health check
  • Employee agreement
  • Non-compete agreement
  • Non-disclosure agreement
  • Direct deposit forms
  • Formal offer letter

4. Announce New Hires to the Company

The new employee announcement may be addressed to the entire company or just to specific departments. You can use email or a company message forum. Whatever medium you use, be sure to mention the new recruit’s name and a brief background of their career history.

This is a good way of making new employees feel welcome. It also encourages current staff to introduce themselves, which can boost morale. Announce remote employees as well; it’s a good way of building early rapport, even among people who will never meet face-to-face.

5. Set Up Internal Accounts

New employees will need access to the company’s internal accounts. An onboarding checklist may include creating:

  • Access privileges to the company cloud database
  • Login information for the company email
  • Login information for work management software such as Slack, Trello, etc.
  • Viewing or editing privileges of documents and spreadsheets

Include internal account setup in the requisition form and submit to human resources. Have new employees test their accounts to ensure everything runs smoothly. Furthermore, if they need to access these accounts outside of work, verify that they have a proper Internet connection and access to personal devices at home.

6. Schedule an Orientation

Orientation should include a walking tour of the work area and the locations of relevant departments, such as HR. This is also the chance for existing staff to welcome the new employees. This can also include a sit-in, where the new hires spend the day observing work operations in real time.

For remote employees, orientation can include a Zoom meeting with current staff in attendance. Make it friendly, where everyone introduces themselves.

7. Performance Evaluation Information

Performance evaluations aren’t something new employees have to worry about. However, an onboarding process checklist should include a primer on how performance evaluations work. This includes evaluation intervals, the parameters evaluated, etc.

A guide on performance evaluations will give new hires a better idea of expectations. Knowing that there are periodic performance evaluations also keeps new employees on their guard, but in a way that won’t place undue pressure. It also helps them understand how their performance impacts their prospects for promotion.

Onboarding Checklist — After the First Day of Work

Here, we cover the essentials on new employees’ first day and onwards.

1. Assign Mentors

For the first week or two, have new hires paired up with senior employees to perform a combination of observing and working with their assigned mentors. This is where new employees ask questions, take notes, etc.

Selecting a new mentor each day is better for everyone. This helps build rapport with each person and allows the mentor and mentee to gauge each other’s abilities, personalities and temperaments.

2. End-of-day Check-in

For the first 7-to-14 days, check in with the new hires after their shift ends. Ask them what they learned and how they’re adjusting to the work.

In addition to checking in with the new hires, you should also check in with each employee’s mentor of the day. The mentor or senior employee may provide additional information, such as whether the recruit may need further observation or training.

You can conduct these check-ins in a variety of formats. You can have a physical face-to-face sit-down with the employee or send an email for the recruit to respond to after the end of the business day.

3. Onboarding Survey

After the first or second week, have recruits fill out a questionnaire. This can consist of multiple types of questions, such as multiple-choice, rating on a scale of one to 10 or open questions. Good questions include:

  • Do you feel more or less confident about your ability to do your job after the orientation?
  • Was there anything you felt was absent in the onboarding?
  • Do you feel you need additional time with a mentor or observation?
  • How would you describe the onboarding process in one word?
  • Do you feel more or less settled in with your job compared to this point-in-time in your previous job?
  • What’s one thing you would change about the onboarding process?

These questions will help you refine the onboarding process for the next hiring phase.

4. Morale Survey

The onboarding survey assesses how well the new employees are performing during their first week or two. In addition to the onboarding survey, there should also be a separate morale survey completed during the same timeframe. This gauges each recruit’s level of enthusiasm and general like/dislike of their new job.

Why is a morale survey important? A Gallup Poll revealed that only 13% of employees feel engaged in their work. In other words, the other 87% are just mindlessly going through the motions for a paycheck. Low morale leads to a higher turnover. Each turnover can cost the company 25% to 200% of the exiting employee’s annual salary.

Morale questions may overlap with general performance surveys. They include questions like:

  • How would you rate our company culture on a scale of one to 10?
  • How would you rate your work/life balance?
  • On a scale of one to 10, how much do you feel the company values its employees?
  • Do you feel this job provides you with a long-term career and financial security?
  • Do you feel HR and/or top-level management is responsive to your concerns?

Morale surveys should be submitted anonymously. New recruits may hesitate to give their honest feedback if they believe it may sour the management’s view of them.

5. Final Check-up

The final check-up happens on the 30th or 60th day. You will perform one last check-in on the employees before they become a regular part of the staff with no further observations or mentoring.

The last check-up is essentially a repeat of the end-of-day check-in performed during the first seven-to-14 days. Ask them if they have further questions or if they need additional mentoring/observations. If all is well, this marks the end of the probationary period.

Streamline Your Onboarding Checklist

The onboarding process can be sophisticated, but it’s an investment that can have huge payoffs by leading to motivated and productive new employees. With Talroo, simplify the onboarding tasks through an easy-to-use and intuitive hiring database system. Get started today to stay organized and keep your new hires informed.