How to Welcome and Onboard a New Employee Successfully

How to Welcome and Onboard a New Employee Successfully

Anyone who’s had a job knows how daunting the first day can be. A new office, new boss, new coworkers, a new job … It’s a lot to take on at once.

That’s why having a robust onboarding process for new employees is a must. It’ll help them ease into their new role and hit the ground running.

Good onboarding also increases employee satisfaction and retention, while bad onboarding is like a bad first impression. It could ruin the rest of the employer-employee relationship. So, it’s important to get it right from the start.

How long does onboarding last? From the day you hire a job candidate to up to 3 months or more!

In this guide, we’ll go over all the steps you should include in your onboarding process. So, if you don’t have one yet, this post is for you!

Onboard a New Employee Successfully


After they sign the job offer

As soon as your new hire signs under the dotted line, let them know how excited you are to have them on board.

This is not the time to stay silent. Don’t wait until they show up at the office to start the onboarding process. Start now.

One of the first things you should send is an official welcome email. It should contain all of the following:

  • The job start date and time
  • The job location and directions on how to get to the right building and room
  • A list of things to bring on the first day
  • Any new hire paperwork. Think W-2 tax form, employee handbook, and company policies. etc.
  • Early access to the employment portal, intranet, or online staff directory
  • Information about employee benefits
  • FAQ sheet

An FAQ sheet can help answer common questions new hires have. Whatever it doesn’t address, you can answer over email or in person on their first day.

Now is also a good time to assign a veteran employee as a mentor. This is someone who can greet the new hire on their first day, answer questions, and be a friend. Choose someone to whom the new hire won’t be reporting. That way, they’ll feel more comfortable asking questions.

Before the first day

A few days before the new hire comes into the office, prepare everything for their arrival. Their cubicle, desk, computer, and other office supplies should all be set up and ready to use.

Work with your IT team to install any necessary programs, create work and email accounts for the new employee, and make sure everything runs properly. That way, they can hit the ground running.

Next, prepare a welcome package with company swag, an employee ID badge, and anything else that will help the new hire feel welcome. Don’t be afraid to decorate their workspace either. Some intentional preparation can go a long way in making a positive impression.

Before the first day


On day one

Once the new hire arrives at the office, show them to their new desk and introduce them to their new team and managers. But try not to overwhelm them too much.

Schedule a lunch with the new hire and all their coworkers. This will help them get to know the group in a more casual setting as well.

Have the new hire meet with the HR department to go over employee benefits, compensation, company policies, and more. This is also a good opportunity to go over an organizational chart so they can better understand the company’s leadership structure and where they fall in.

At some point, coordinate an office tour so that the new hire can get familiar with the entire building, not just where they will be working.

Whatever you do, prepare a schedule. That way, you’re not scrambling to fit everything in. And if you don’t get to everything on the first day, don’t stress. You can always postpone things to the next workday.

Some things not to do

That said, there are definitely some things you should not do during onboarding. Here are some:

  • Don’t welcome the new hire to a messy space.
  • Don’t leave them without a guide to answer questions.
  • Don’t leave them alone for their first lunch break.
  • Don’t make onboarding boring or intimidating.
  • Don’t go into the onboarding process without a plan.

If you avoid making these mistakes, onboarding will go much more smoothly.

Bringing it all together

Onboarding should be seen as a process

Onboarding should be seen as a process, not just an event. It requires proper planning, preparation, and delegation to pull off successfully.

Remember, it’s all about making a good first impression. You want your new hire to feel comfortable and excited about their new job. If you can do that, you’ve won half the battle. The rest is just making sure the new hire has everything they need to succeed at work.

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Ryan is the VP of Operations for He brings over a decade of experience in managing custom website and software development projects for clients small and large, managing internal and external teams on meeting and exceeding client expectations--delivering projects on-time and within budget requirements. Ryan is based in El Paso, Texas.
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Ryan Nead