Employee onboarding

New employee onboarding schedule - what and when?

Adrian Witkowski
New employee onboarding schedule - what and when?

Introducing new team members to the organization is a process that has its stages and dynamics. From this text you will learn how to create a step-by-step implementation schedule for a new hire, what to pay attention to and how not to miss key moments. 

Is it possible to establish one onboarding schedule?

Employee onboarding process is quite complex , divided into stages and involving many people in the organization. Its goal is to bring the new hire to full productivity, and this term can mean many things, depending on the specificity of the company, e.g.

  • individual practices and company policies,
  • industry (e.g. IT vs. manufacturing),
  • type of work (e.g. office, field),
  • contract (B2B contract vs. employment contract),
  • work model (remote vs. stationary).

Therefore, it would be difficult to establish one universal onboarding schedule that would work for every employer. However, there are certain standards without which the effective onboarding of a new hire will not be achieved.

  • When designing the entire onboarding process, take into account the needs of both sides - the new hire and the employer.
  • Make sure the onboarding plan is structured and time-bound. Describe each stage step by step. Determine who should be involved and how long each will last.
  • Make sure that each person involved in employee onboarding process knows exactly new hire's role and responsibilities. Similarly with new hires - discuss the implementation plan with him/her and create space for him/her to ask questions in case of any doubts.
  • Stay in ongoing contact with the new hire, starting with preboarding. The silence on the side of the employer between the end of recruitment and the first day of work increases stress and the risk of ghosting.
  • Each person or department involved in onboarding is responsible for a different area and has different needs. As a consequence, their responsibility for the entire onboarding process is dispersed. Yet the new team members may not feel this way. The memorable onboarding experience should be smooth and consistent for new hires, and the " onboarding backstage" should be out of his/her sight.

Sample onboarding schedule for a new hire

90-30 days before the first day: end of recruitment and start of new employees implementation

The candidate has accepted the offer, the HR department changes his/her status in the ATS system to "employed." - this is when the onboarding process begins. And this is regardless of whether it is planned and initiated by you. Therefore, it is better to guide the onboarding process and give it the right track. How?

Immediately after completing the recruitment, start the first onboarding tasks, which are the responsibility of the HR department, often together with the manager. The first step should be a welcome message to the new hire. Remember that the message should be personalized and kept in a friendly tone. The idea is to make the new team member feel like you want to stay in touch with them before their first day at the new company.

The next step is to apply for the employment of a new person. Additionally, if your organization uses an onboarding application , make it available to the new hire at the preboarding stage. Thanks to this, new team members will be able to become familiar with this tool early and use it more effectively in subsequent stages of the great onboarding process.

The start of the strong onboarding process for a new hire is also a good opportunity to send him or her an onboarding FAQ. If your company does not have such a document, analyze the most frequently asked questions of new team members waiting for day one and create such a material from it. You will save a lot of time answering questions, and your new hires will be calmer because they are better informed.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: Make sure that the candidate's experience in the recruitment process is consistent with the onboarding process. Where the candidate ends experience , it starts with employee onboarding experience. The transition from one stage to the next should be smooth in the eyes of new team members.

It is also worth using this moment to conduct the first pulse-check survey regarding the recruitment process. Thanks to this, you will gather feedback "right away", when it is easier for the new hire to reliably assess the entire onboarding process.

25 days before the first day: HR forms, requesting equipment and access

Time for new hire paperwork! To make this process smooth and error-free, it is worth automating it using digital HR forms. New team members can complete them online (e.g. in the onboarding application ) at any time, without having to send paper documents to the office. This speeds up the entire procedure and makes it easier to correct incorrect data if it occurs.

Another important point at this stage of implementation of new team members is to apply for equipment necessary for work and access. This is a task for the new hire's manager.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: It is not worth postponing these onboarding tasks until the last minute, because this increases the risk that the contract and equipment will not be ready on time. The sooner you deal with the formalities, the more space you will gain in the subsequent stages of onboarding process

21 days before the first day: choosing an onboarding buddy , onboarding plan

Choosing an onboarding buddy is a task for the manager. Their joint task is to develop a plan for the implementation of a new hire, dividing roles and onboarding tasks. It is a good idea for the buddy to contact the new team member during this time (e-mail or telephone), introduce himself/herself in his or her new role and leave his contact details in case of any questions. This will make new hires excited and feel more cared for before the welcome day. Besides, it's nice to start with a welcome day , when we already know the person who will support us in the first few weeks (or even months) in a given organization.

Schedule for onboarding a new hire- what and when? I Gamfi Blog (GIF)

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: Make sure there is a clear division of responsibilities between the onboarding buddy and the manager. The onboarding process can't be on his/her side - that's the manager's domain. An onboarding buddy is supposed to provide emotional support for the new employee, take care of his relationships with existing employees and introduce him/her to other team members. It is also the role of a guide who introduces a new hire to company culture and is their first point of contact in case of questions.

18 days before the first day: materials about the company

Preboarding is a good time to introduce a new hire to the organization. Provide the new team member with the first publicly available materials about the company culture (history, company mission, vision, structure), e.g. in the form of an employee handbook. Choose creative solutions and an attractive way of presenting your content.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: Don't overwhelm the new hire with too much information. Focus on small portions of knowledge adapted to the onboarding stage. 18 days before the first day, the new team member has not signed the contract yet, so this is not the time to bombard him/her with extensive materials about the company culture. Doing so can only increase his/her stress.

16 days before the first day: information about benefits

Schedule for onboarding a new hire- what and when? I Gamfi Blog (GIF)

The conversation about benefits certainly took place during the recruitment process. Now it's time for specifics. Send the new hire general information about benefits (what the package looks like, whether and how it can be personalized, how to activate it) or a benefit offer adjusted to the needs of a novice. Encourage him to ask questions and offer support if something is not clear to him- in order to meet employee satisfaction.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: If possible, start the formalities related to the selection and activation of benefits together with the new hireat this stage. This will definitely be appreciated by them!

14 days before the first day: welcome pack and equipment

This is the last moment to collect a welcome gift and equipment necessary for work, especially in the case of new employees who will work completely remotely. Then it is important to send the parcel early enough. Otherwise, you risk that during the welcome day the new team member will have neither a computer nor a phone...

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: Give the new hire the opportunity to choose company equipment and a welcome pack. This is how it works in our onboarding application.

10 days before: preparation of the workplace

This is the time for technical tasks for the IT department, i.e. configuring the e-mail box, telephone, computer and access to systems. Additionally, if the new hire is also expected to come to the office, make sure the workplace is properly prepared (provide a desk, chair and other necessary equipment).

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: This is one of the key elements of positive onboarding experience. The lack of space and tools for work is a huge negligence on the side of the employer, which may negatively affect his/her evaluation in the eyes of the new hire. To prevent this, it is worth using reminders about individual tasks for the IT department and the manager. They can be generated automatically from the onboarding application.

For the future, it is also worth creating an onboarding checklist of accesses that should be prepared for each new hire and those needed by employees with a specific implementation profile.

7 days before the first day: welcome day schedule

The first day of work is usually a stressful moment. Help new employees prepare well for the welcome day. Send all organizational information by e-mail (e.g. what time should the employee arrive at the office, how to get there, who will be waiting for him/her and where) and a detailed agenda for the welcome day.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: Sometimes new employees are concerned about basic issues such as dress code or etiquette during online meetings in the case of remote first day. Also keep these topics in mind and address them appropriately.

3 days before the first day: contact from the manager

Any form of contact will be welcomed. However, if the manager wants the " wow " effect, let him pick up the phone and share his/her enthusiasm with the new hire about the upcoming start of his new job. A telephone conversation in a pleasant and cordial tone will certainly make an impression on a new hire.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: It is good practice to send a health survey to a new hire. Thanks to this, the manager will make sure that the he/she shows up on the scheduled day.

1 day before the first day: check-in

Schedule for onboarding a new hire - what and when? I Gamfi Blog

Once again, send the new hire all organizational information (office address, who will be waiting for him/her and at what time, agenda for the first day of a new job). Even if the novice received this information earlier, it could have been communicated through different channels (phone, email, Slack). It is worth collecting them again in one place and making sure that the new hire has all the necessary information at hand.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: The tone of communication. Make sure it is cordial and motivating. An impersonal, very formal message will not make a good impression on the new hire, especially when there is a stressful moment ahead.

First day of work: welcoming a new hire

Even if we do our homework carefully and make full use of the time before starting new job responsibilities, the first day in an organization is a stressful moment for most people. A new role, an unknown team culture, learning procedures, a different organizational culture, and in some cases, a new industry. All these circumstances can be overwhelming even for an experienced employee. Appropriate preparation on the first day of work will help you tame these difficult emotions. In turn, no specific plan for a welcome day can be the beginning of problems.

The absolute basis is the organization of the workstation and work tools, the provision of all the tools and the preparation of a welcome kit. The new employee should know the daily schedule and have the support of the manager, an HR employee and a buddy during its implementation. The latter's help and commitment in the first days of work are invaluable. It is worth creating a friendly atmosphere from the very beginning so that the new hire feels supported and has space to ask questions.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: Don't overwhelm yourself with too much information. The employee will have many opportunities to become familiar with his new job responsibilities. For now, focus on "taking care" of the new hires, talking about the company's mission and values, and breaking the ice with the existing employees.

From day 1 to day 7 of work: introduction to the team

Schedule for onboarding a new employee - what and when? I Gamfi Blog (GIF)

The first week at work is a key moment that can determine the employee's future in a new work environment. According to BambooHR research, 16.45% of employees decide to leave the organization in the first days of employment.

Implementation into duties will go more smoothly if the new hire quickly feels a part of the team. The first week of work is also time for formal and informal welcome meeting to build bonds in the team. Make sure that the new hire has a comfortable space to ask questions and exchange impressions - it may even be a separate channel on Slack or a group on the company messenger.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: Take care of your relationships. Buddy plays an important role in this process, providing support and leading the way in the company.

Day 7 of work: pulse-check survey

Now that we know how important the first days in new work environment are, we should keep our finger on the pulse and constantly measure the employee's job satisfaction level. It is worth starting to do this after the first week of work. In this way, we will solicit feedback in real time and will be able to detect possible warning signals in time.

In the pulse-check survey , we can ask about impressions from the first day and first week - whether there are areas in which the employee needs support, whether the manager provides all the necessary information, whether all company procedures are understandable, whether the employee understands what the most important responsibilities of a given position are? Answers to these questions will help improve the onboarding process.

Schedule for onboarding a new hire - what and when? I Gamfi Blog

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: The pulse-check survey should be user-friendly and easy to use. Take care of its attractive form. Don't overdo the number of questions - just ask 5 specific issues.

From the 1st to the 14th day of work: basic training

The first weeks of work are usually a time when a new employee's calendar is spent on the job training, usually organized by the HR department. On the one hand, these are standard onboarding programs, such as occupational health and safety training, but also those explaining procedures, e.g. security and data protection. They should also cover the use of tools typical for a given organization. During initial training, we should also present the company's culture and values and help the employee understand what goals are set for him/her and the team.

WHAT TO LOOK FOR? As in the case of a survey, it is worth taking care of its attractive form. Occupational health and safety training or tutorials on corporate network security do not have to be a boring lecture. If we work on employee engagement solutions, the effectiveness of the training will be greater and the new hire will acquire more necessary information.

From the 14th to the 90th day of work: on-the-job onboarding process

Since then, the employee onboarding usually takes a very individualized form. The path of this stage is determined by the manager, who guides the new hire through increasingly complex onboarding tasks and responsibilities. The first three months often mean the so-called trial period for which we can already set specific goals.

So-called job shadowing, i.e. accompanying a more experienced team member to his or her duties and meetings, will help achieve them. This is one way for a new hire to become well acquainted with the tasks, work specifics, tools and systems needed for the job. At this stage we should already be studying the effects and progress of his/her activities.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: The foundation of on-the-job employee onboarding is the manager's action. It depends on his/her availability and commitment how quickly he/she will understand new responsibilities and achieve independence. Daily feedback should become a guiding principle for an employee's success in a new role. A good practice is morning updates of up to 10-15 minutes, where the manager and employee address current issues and possible concerns, and plan the next tasks.

30th day of work: pulse-check survey and 1:1 meeting with the manager

Full effectiveness is still a long way off, but after the first month, the new hire already knows quite a lot about his job and the company. On the other hand, the manager can already assess at what stage of employee onboarding we are and what further steps should be taken. So all that remains is to create space to present these two perspectives.

For this purpose, it is worth using the pulse-check survey again so that the employee can assess the quality of the training and the usefulness of the materials received.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: Good results should be achieved by a conversation in which the employee and the manager can count on mutual feedback. What does the employee feel? Does he/she have any questions or concerns after the first four weeks? Does everyday life in the new work environment differ from what you imagined during the recruitment process?

Harmonogram wdrożenia nowego pracownika - co i kiedy? I Blog Gamfi

90th day of work: new employee completes the NPS survey

90 days is quite a long time for the employed people to achieve considerable effectiveness and be able to evaluate the formal onboarding program. In the NPS survey, we can ask them about the onboarding process - what are their general impressions, how do they evaluate preboarding , did they receive sufficient support from the manager and buddy , did the training materials or formal issues cause any problems for them? It is also an opportunity to check the atmosphere in the team.

WHAT TO PAY ATTENTION TO: The NPS survey is a photograph of an employee's feelings here and now. Therefore, we should not postpone analyzing their answers and drawing conclusions for the following months. Team members will feel more empowered and connected to the workplace if we regularly communicate to them the changes introduced thanks to their feedback.

New employee onboarding schedule: how long does onboarding take?

During the implementation process, we strive to ensure that the employee is able to perform his or her tasks independently, at least 80-90%. This goal can usually be achieved in about 90 days, but much depends on the specificity of a given industry, the role of the new hire, procedures in the organization or the degree of automation of implementation processes. Onboarding may also be influenced by the current situation in the company, when, for example, the market situation forces reshuffles in the team.

So how much time does it take to onboard an employee? In the retail industry onboarding programs are often shorter than the expected three months. In the IT area, however, it may take much longer. The onboarding period will also be extended in the case of very specialized positions and may take up to 12 months. It is important that throughout the entire time when getting to know the new workplace, the new hire has the support of the entire team and space for regular follow-up conversations.

Do you have an implementation schedule prepared? Transfer it to the onboarding application.

Test the Gamfi application for free.

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