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New Hire Onboarding Check List

Does your company have a high turn-over that you have trouble accounting for? Do employees complain about not feeling supported or not knowing what to do? There are several possibilities for this however one of them may be due to problems with your onboarding process.

Onboarding is a process done over a period of twelve months. If it is done well it will ensure that you have high quality employees that will boost the company. However, the opposite will likely be true if your onboarding process is done poorly.

There is no harm then in taking the time to check to make sure that your process has everything it needs at the right time. You can either wing it and hope for the best or create a checklist to cover what you need and make sure you stay on track.

Firstly, I just want to clear up a common misconception for those that came in late or just want to double check things. Onboarding starts from before the new employees are hired and goes through to the end of their first year. It is often confused with Orientation which is an event that is usually confined to a single day or perhaps even a week depending on the situation. The purpose of orientation is to welcome the new employees to the company and fill in basic information about the company. Orientation is definitely a part of the onboarding process however it does not replace it.

So, with that out of the way, what should you include in your checklist, what needs to be done to ensure things go as smoothly as possible? I have put a general guide together below, this covers the most major things however every workplace and industry are different and so it will need to be tailored to where you work, this should still be useful though.

The wild unknown prior to your new hire's beginning
- Ensure that their background check is done- to make sure that they are who you want to be hiring.
- In a similar vein make sure to go through and check out all of their paperwork
- Once they are approved, they should be sent a copy of all the necessary paperwork so that it can be completed before they arrive and therefore get it out of the way, freeing up time for more important things.
- Clarify what is going to be expected of them with the other employees who work in the same area. Make sure that their team is aware that they are coming.
- Discuss with them the schedule of events they can expect when they first arrive.
- This is a good time to also make sure you have sorted out the benefits package.
- During the discussion clarify any duties (in as much detail as is reasonable) they are going to be required to undertake.
- Make sure to set up their workstation/work area with everything they are likely to need and don't forget to make sure it is clean and tidy.
- Whilst doing this it is vital to make sure that all of their log-in details have been sorted as well. So, they can be set up and ready to go as soon as possible.
- Undoubtedly they are going to need some training as well, the method and style of the training will obviously depend on the job. However, you will need to give thought to booking spaces, trainers and equipment that is necessary.

First Day through to the First week -Orientation time
- Show the new employee around the workplace
- Introduce them to their team as well as the other people they will usually be working with
- This would likely be the best time to conduct the induction
- Sit down and discuss their first project with them and go over your expectations with them again.

Roughly the first three months
- Once they are settled, they should be set up with a mentor or supervisor to help show them the ropes and provide answers to their questions.
- Make sure to plan their workload to keep it at as reasonable a pace as possible. So, they aren't overwhelmed yet they also understand the demands of the role.
- Set up regular meetings to check on how they are progressing with the company and how they feel about it.
- If possible, organise a staff social event so that all new and old staff can get to know each other.

Within their first six months - Conduct a performance review, this is actually beneficial for both you and the new recruit as it allows time to check and review how their goals are progressing.
- If the first goals have been completed or are no longer suitable then it is a good idea to adjust and set a new group of goals based on how the first set, went.
- The review also offers a chance to discuss the current status of the training that they have received or should have received and address any perceived gaps whether on their part or yours.

By the end of the first year and beyond - Conduct another review in much the same way as at the end of the 6-month period,
- Check to see their progress and how they have gone on their goals.
- Set up a suitable system for regular reviews in the future if one has not been implemented already.

So that's a guide to an onboarding checklist. As I said above this is only a guide to get you in the right direction. With all the different jobs and industries there are going to be different systems and ideas, so it is impossible to cover everything. Anyway, enjoy and happy onboarding.

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