The Ultimate New Employee Onboarding Checklist

Have you ever been hired for a new job and felt nervousness and excitement leading up to your first day? And then, you have arrived on your first day of work, fill out a bunch of paperwork, someone shows you to your desk and introduces you to a couple of coworkers, and then you are sort of just left to fend for yourself. There are some simple things that you can do to combat the expense and struggle of employee turnover. The first thing is the Onboarding. 


Research has found that 69% of employees are more likely to stay with a company for at least three years after experiencing a great employee onboarding. Onboarding programs may differ slightly from employee to employee, there are certain fundamental components that are universal in nature. To make things easier a handy checklist helps you use it to get your new employees up to speed quickly and set them up for retention and ongoing success right from the start. 


Before Day 1 

Before Day 1 is called pre-boarding, and it is a great way to really set the stage for positive new employee experience. It also helps to save time and make the regular onboarding process go much smoother. 

  • Gather and provide all necessary paperwork
  • Ask your new employee to review the company handbook
  • Prepare a workstation.
  • Set up all necessary tools and equipment, including a computer/laptop, printer, access to required software, internal systems access, etc. 
  • Create new company email address. 
  • Provide helpful material to help the new employee become acquainted with your organization, such as an org chart, a detailed job description, company policies 


Day 1

On day 1 your new employee is scheduled to begin work. It is necessary to have the following tasks and documentation ready to go. This will ensure the transition faster and more efficient. It’ll also make a better first impression on your new team member.

  • Prepare the rest of the coworkers for the new employee’s arrival to welcome him or her.
  • Set a welcome meeting (lunch is a nice touch).
  • Provide a tour of the office, including important areas, such as bathrooms, break rooms and where to locate other colleagues should the new employee need support.
  • Schedule a 1:1 meeting with new hire’s direct manager. 
  • Assign a mentor and ask him or her to schedule a time to meet with the new hire ASAP. 


Week 1 

Day one is important but to keep the momentum going and make the new hire experience a more successful one, use the first week of employment to do the following: 

  • Set up any necessary training as quickly as possible.
  • Check and verify that all required paperwork has been completed.
  • You can assign the first project to your new hire employees.This ensures new employees to feel like they are also a part of the team and enables them to settle in and begin to become comfortable in their role.
  • Review your employee performance and that way set specific goals for month one.
  • Ask for feedback or questions and any concerns.You can have open the lines of communication right away. 


Hence, studies have shown that the more you invest in making new employees feel comfortable and confident during the first year, the more likely they’ll be to stay on for the long haul. 

3 Easy Ways To Use Gamification In Your Employee Onboarding Process

It is found that 31% of employees have quit the company within their first six months. Of these, a large chunk of employees alludes the lack of fun at work and training sessions. Gamification as an onboarding strategy serves two main goals that are to make training fun and to accelerate the pace of learning. 


Why Use Gamification for Onboarding? 

Gamification is essentially the use of concepts which is widespread in traditional video games to motivate and boost users encouragement to perform certain tasks. In employee training, reward points and badges motivate the user to learn and complete the course. The rewards and badges are not only the elements of gamification but also a well-designed game has other elements like goals and clearly-marked paths to drive the player in a direction that the game wants them to take. Therefore, such elements are also used for designing courses or learning materials since it is possible for the learner to get distracted during the process. Onboarding programs that use multimedia as part of the training process too, contribute towards better focus and do not take the learner’s mind away from the actual process.


There are some collected three easy ways to integrate little fun and games to the onboarding process below! 

  1. Leveling Up 

One of the first things an organization should do while bringing a new employee onboard is to set actionable goals for them to achieve in order to get started on their real job. Goal setting is the HR version of ‘leveling up’ where a player is required to accomplish a certain number of tasks before they are promoted to the next level. The use of LMS in an organization takes care of the training process and then establish specific goals within your learning package.

Goal setting can be both active and passive from a gamification perspective. Active goal setting techniques make use of assessments to clarify and check if the employee being onboarded has truly breached their goals or not. Passive goal setting techniques make use of checklists to notify players or users of their goals they have reached. This is useful for onboarding sessions that may be revisited later. 

  1. Leaderboards

Leaderboards are the list that bring out the top performing players which is one of the most effective gaming strategies to motivate players  to keep playing. Studies have found that introducing leaderboards in gamification increase the level of competition between the players. Leaderboards, when involved in employee onboarding, can motivate learners to improve their learning efficiency and be productive in order to secure a rank in the leaderboard. 

To integrate leaderboards to your onboarding program, it is very necessary to objectively state the specific criteria that will go into assessing performance. 

  1. Rewards & Incentives

It may be too early to give reward to a newly hired employee with financial incentives for their performance during the onboarding sessions. But it is said that human beings derive motivation from rewards regardless of its form. For your onboarding programs, an organization can have a wide variety of rewards programs. A common intention is to offer certificates at the completion of the onboarding program. Also, an organization can invest in giving cool badges to its employees for completing assessments and completing tasks that are part of the onboarding program. 

  • Beyond Onboarding 

Although gamification is a powerful tool to improve employee onboarding but it is also important to note that the strategy is equally applicable for all kinds of training in the workplace. Technologies will change all the time which makes it important for organizations to upgrade the skills of their employees. With gamification, it is not only possible to make this onboarding process fun, but also more highly efficient.

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Employee Onboarding Software And Some Popular Myths To Dispel

Employee Training is a necessity for every new hire. Even the most experienced employees need help in mastering a task, tools, etc that are unique in the organization. 

Mentioned below are some common misconceptions that must be preventing you from obtaining the best return on investment and engaging new members-

Onboarding Software Is Only For Large Organizations:

The new hire training onboarding system is a realistic investment for every organization that plans to hire new employees. Not just large companies with sizable budgets and hundreds of employees but also small or medium business that doesn’t have much room in their budget for employee onboarding software. It assures your new hire to give access to crucial online training materials whenever it is convenient for them. 

All New Recruits Require The Same Training Strategy:

It is a fact that every new employee who enters an organization needs a customized training plan and methods to bridge the gaps and improve task performance. Even the employees who are in the same position have different skillset and responsibilities. Even their past experience and professional background matter a lot in dictating which sources they require. 

Training Stops When They Step Into The Workplace:

One of the most damaging new hire onboarding myths is that as soon as the new employees venture into the workplace you can stop the onboarding training and let them learn through experience. In every organization, development should be the first priority in every stage of the employment cycle. The first few weeks of a new hire in the workplace is nerve-wracking and filled with mistakes. Therefore,  support resources are more essential to overcome work-related challenges. Once the training ends, training to sharpen their skills and talents commences. 

Every New Employee Is Ready To Dive Into Onboarding Training:

Sadly, not every new hire employee wants to dive into the training process even if they need to develop new skills. Some may require a bit more incentive to invest their time in onboarding. For instance- you can incorporate game mechanics to give extra motivation so that they actively engage in the onboarding sessions. Provide them with real-world examples and demos of how to access online training materials and the practical perks they offer. They must have never used learning technologies before therefore, they aren’t much aware of how to use the platform or the benefits it brings to them. 

Employee Onboarding Software Takes The Place Of An Online Instructor:

It’s true when you invest in employee onboarding software you don’t have to hire an online instructor to provide guidance or support but you must still have an LMS administrator to provide assistance and monitor new hire progress. For instance, they might take follow-up with employees who haven’t gotten the necessary online training certificates or host a monthly live event to make sure everyone is up to the mark. 

Online Training Leaves Little Room For Social Learning Opportunities:

Using employee onboarding software is a solo pursuit and must complete all the training activities on their own. This myth was created based on the old fashioned learning principle. Today, with the help of LMS it gives employees the power to engage in online discussions, provide feedback and share experiences. They can also complete the sessions with the help of group projects or peer-based coaching programs. 


These are just a handful of myths associated with new hire employee onboarding and learning technologies. By dispelling them gives you the opportunity to assist new hires during their moment of need and prepare them for everyday challenges. Even small-medium businesses have the chance to sharpen their talent to help them reach their full potential. 

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Benefits Of Using Video For Employee Onboarding

It is already difficult to hire or promote qualified candidates if there is a labor shortage and skills gap. According to an article from SHRM, new employees who went through a proper and structured onboarding program were 65 % more likely to be with the organization after three years. Nowadays, employees are eager to learn about the company, their department and their new role. They want to match the speed of other existing employees as quickly as possible so that they start doing their job and increase their work performance. 

Here, the question arises that how to build this enthusiasm and high engagement and make the first impression strong? One thing can be done is by incorporating video for blending the onboarding experience in a perfect manner. 


Benefits of using video for Employee Onboarding


  • Accessibility:

Many videos are available on demand. New hires can watch and re-watch as many times as they feel. Hold on the new person’s excitement and let them start onboarding on their own time. They can watch the videos at home, at night, or on the weekend. In-person onboarding conversations and meetings can get delayed when regular work becomes more urgent or important therefore videos are there when the employee needs them. 

  • Consistency:

With the help of video, an ideal content is delivered exactly the same to everyone. It gives assurance that the correct tone is conveyed with specific language to them every time. In this, an HR or supervisor can also try to change things up to keep it interesting. 

  • Efficiency:

New employees can watch their onboarding videos, take notes and get their information and queries solved immediately. This saves time for the HR department who has to repeat these meetings and conversations over and over. It also saves time for the new hire employees eliminating longer training sessions and listening to the unrelated questions of other new hires. Videos provide the foundation and the HR department provide the personalized details.

  • Connections:

It has been argued that using videos and technology for onboarding employees is less personal than a live event making to achieve a strong connection with the new hire but if the live onboarding event takes place in an auditorium and lasts for several hours, there may be less of a connection. To help create an immediate connection between the company and the new person, a series of onboarding videos can help to build that connection. 


Therefore, onboarding videos offer a simple way to effectively communicate important information that plain verbal explanation cannot do justice. Developing an interesting video allows you to create high-quality content that’s easy to modify and update when laws or policies change.

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Buddying Up For Great Employee Onboarding

Buddying Up For Great Employee Onboarding

To bring a new employee onboard is both an exciting and stressful time. In this managers play a critical role in moulding a new employees first weeks and months, with the help of team effort that ensures the onboarding experience both positive and productive. 


Microsoft has been working to improve its onboarding process for the last few years. From the beginning, they have learned that a simple action for their new employees can have a lot of benefits, simply by keeping meetings with the managers in their first week on the job. Onboarding buddies play an important role in ensuring a successful onboarding experience for the new hires. Many a time organization forgets to introduce their new employees to its brand new company but after piloting onboarding buddy program across the organization it is found that onboarding buddies help new hires in 3 effective ways :-


a) Onboarding buddies provide context: For new hires, context is a very precious commodity. Without it a new hire will likely struggle to fully understand their role or how to contribute to the success of an organization. Onboarding buddies helps to  give the type of context you won’t find in any employee handbook such as knowledgeable onboarding buddies can help new hires determine who relevant stakeholders are, how to navigate the matrix of different organizations, and think strategically when problem solving. They can also shed light on any unspoken rules that exist or  cultural norms which could lead to a much smoother transition into the organization. 


b) Onboarding buddies boost productivity: Both the company and the new hire has the concern for speed to productivity. Every company becomes satisfied by filling the position of a certain skill set and now it wants to see a quick return on investment. Meantime, the new hire is likely experiencing the tension between wanting to enhance quickly but also needing to take time to learn the job. At Microsoft, they have found that the more the onboarding buddy met with the new hires, the greater will be the new hire’s perception of their own speed to productivity. It is found that 56% of new hires who have met with their onboarding buddy for once in their first 90 days indicated that their buddy helped them to quickly become productive in their role. That percentage increases upto 95%, if they met their buddy 8 to 10 times in their first 90 days.  


c) Onboarding buddies improve new hire satisfaction: In order to understand the value of onboarding buddies, Microsoft has looked at the difference in hires who were assigned onboarding buddies vs. those who were not assigned, onboarding buddies. The research found that after their first week on the job, new hires with onboarding buddies were 23% more satisfied with their overall onboarding experience compared to those without buddies. This trend continued at 90 days with a 36% increase in new employee satisfaction. Those with the buddies also reported that they receive more active support from both their managers and the internal team. 


It’s not just the new hire who can benefit from this relationship. It also provides an opportunity to demonstrate and develop managerial and leadership skills which enables to gain a deeper level of expertise by serving an onboarding buddy. Ultimately, Microsoft found that successful onboarding doesn’t require an over complicated playbook. It is more important to have a multi-dimensional onboarding plan in place and support new hires for achieving success.

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