Employee Onboarding Checklist: Step-by-Step Guide

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Having a set onboarding checklist to go through step-by-step is an incredible asset to any organization. A well-structured onboarding process not only helps new employees feel welcomed and valued but also ensures they quickly become productive members of the team.

According to the Society for Human Resource Management, effective onboarding can improve employee retention by 82% and productivity by over 70%.

An onboarding checklist should cover various aspects of the onboarding process, including pre-arrival preparations, first-day activities, ongoing training, and integration into the company culture.

In this post, we will not only ensure you have a complete new hire onboarding checklist but also the necessary tools to put those steps into practice.

The must-have steps in an employee onboarding checklist are as follows:

  • Pre-Arrival Preparation
  • Orientation & First Day
  • Implementing Mentorship Program
  • Setting Automated Onboarding Tasks
  • Regular Check-in Meetings
  • Onboarding Surveys
  • 90-Day Onboarding Reviews

As we go through each element of the new hire onboarding checklist, we will also cover how each step can actually be put into action by using the right tools.

Whether your organization is remote or working in a conventional office setup, using employee onboarding software is the best possible way to implement a standardized and structured onboarding program for new hires.

While there are some great employee onboarding software out there for you to choose from, the universally accepted best practice is to find an onboarding tool that integrated into your communication and collaboration platforms.

In onboarding checklist guide, we will be showing you an onboarding solution that is fully integrated into Microsoft Teams and Outlook, Teamflect. It is the highest-rated solution in the app stores for both of those platforms for a good reason.

1. Pre-Arrival Preparation

The onboarding process begins before the new hire even sets foot in the office. Pre-arrival preparation ensures that everything is in place for a smooth first day, setting a positive tone and minimizing first-day jitters.

  • Complete Paperwork: Ensure all necessary forms (e.g., tax forms, NDAs) are filled out.
  • Set Up Work Equipment: Prepare laptop, software access, and other tools required for the job.
  • Prepare Workspace: Arrange desk, chair, and office supplies.
  • Send Welcome Email: Include first-day instructions, schedule, and important contacts.
  • Organize Welcome Package: Your employee welcome package can include company swag, employee handbook, and other relevant materials.

2. The First Day

There is nothing quite like the first day for a new hire. It is a critical phase in the onboarding process, setting the tone for a new employee’s experience. It involves ensuring all preparations are in place and introducing the new hire to their work environment, team, and responsibilities.

  • Orientation Session: Cover company policies, culture, and job expectations. Orientation sessions provide a comprehensive overview of the organization and employee role.
  • Providing a tour of the facilities: While this is a regular tour for conventional setups, remote teams can replace this with a detailed rundown of their digital infrastructure.
  • Meeting with Manager: Schedule a one-on-one meeting with the new hire’s manager and establish a personal connection and clarifying immediate tasks and goals.
  • Assign Mentor/Buddy: Pair the new hire with an experienced employee for guidance. A mentor or an onboarding buddy provides ongoing support and helps the new hire acclimate quickly.

Implementing a Mentorship Program in Microsoft Teams

In order to implement a strong employee mentorship program to onboard new hires, you will need to integrate Teamflect into your Microsoft Teams. All you need to do is search for it in the App Store and add it to your Teams!

Teamflect app in microsoft teams app store

Teamflect will automatically have access to your organizational chart through Entra ID, without you need to add in any additional employee information.

Mentorship Programs in Teamflect

Teamflect’s “Focus People” section allows leaders to form mentors – mentee relationships between employees.

These mentor, mentee relationships come with:

  • Automated meetings at regular intervals.
  • Review templates specific to the mentorship program
Employee onboarding checklist in teamflect

3. The First Week

The first week of a new employee’s onboarding process is crucial for deepening their understanding of the company, their role, and their integration into the team. This phase of the onboarding checklist involves continued orientation, training, and most importantly, automated onboarding tasks to help them feel comfortable and productive.

  • Job-Specific Training: Provide comprehensive training tailored to the new hire’s specific role.
  • Continued Check-ins with Mentors: Regular meetings between the new hire and their assigned mentor. These meetings, if you set your mentorship program up with Teamflect, are automated at regular intervals.
  • Introduction to Tools and Systems: Train the new employees on the tools, software, and systems they will use daily. Familiarity with these tools is essential for efficiency and productivity.

Creating Automated Onboarding Tasks

Onboarding tasks for employees encompass a comprehensive set of activities designed to facilitate a smooth transition for new hires into their roles and the organization.

Automated employee onboarding tasks in Teamflect

In order to streamline this process and have set onboarding tasks automatically assigned to new hires according to departments, we will be taking advantage of Teamflect one more time.

Teamflect allows users to create these sets of onboarding tasks for each department. Creating new onboarding tasks sets and customizing existing ones is just a matter of few clicks!

Creating task groups in Teamflect

Having automated onboarding tasks for new hires as a part of your onboarding checklist helps new hires get acclimated faster by engaging them early on and not allowing them to feel lost in a new organization.

Create automated onboarding tasks inside Microsoft Teams!
No sign-up required.
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4. The First Month

The first month of a new employee’s journey is a crucial period for deepening their integration into the company and setting the foundation for their long-term success.

The first month in the onboarding process is about more than just getting up to speed with job-specific tasks; it’s about building relationships, understanding the company culture, and aligning with the organization’s goals.

  • Advanced Training Sessions: Offer advanced training sessions that dive deeper into the nuances of each department and position.
  • Cross-Departmental Meetings: Past the first week, new hires need to be getting more familiar with people outside of their departments. Encouraging them to be part of cross-functional and cross-departmental teams helps achieve just that.
  • Project Assignments: Within their first month of employment, your new hires should start taking part in projects related to their departments and roles.
  • Onboarding Surveys: Conducting onboarding surveys with employees regularly is the best way to measure the success of an onboarding program.

Conducting Onboarding Surveys in Microsoft Teams

While conducting surveys is an incredibly beneficial practice for any onboarding program to succeed, a survey is only as good as its response rate.

Sending out surveys is a great start but in order to make sure the survey reaches the end goal of providing you with insights, you need a survey tool that is in the flow of work, guaranteeing high survey completion and response rates.

Employee onboarding surveys in Microsoft Teams

This is where having your survey tool be a part of your main communication platform is really helpful. By simply heading over to Teamflect’s “Surveys” module inside Microsoft Teams or Outlook, and selecting the right survey template for you, you can send out surveys to your new hires in a matter of minutes.

Even better, you can automate these surveys to be conducted at any interval or in any number of days after recruitment, to make the entire process even smoother.

When you send out a survey, your employees receive adaptive cards inside Microsoft Teams chat that allow them to complete the survey without ever having to leave Teams, ensuring high survey completion rates.

Employee Onboarding Survey Question in Teamflect

Regardless of how you are conducting your onboarding surveys, asking for input from your new hires;

  • Shows That You Care: Demonstrates to new employees that the organization values their opinions and is committed to continuous improvement.
  • Provides Insight into New Hire Experiences: Helps understand how new hires perceive the onboarding process, what they find useful, and where they encounter challenges.
  • Identifies Improvement Areas: Highlights specific aspects of the onboarding process that may need adjustments or enhancements.
Intuitive Pulse Surveys Inside Microsoft Teams!
No sign-up required.
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5. First 90-Days + Completion

The first 90 days mark a critical period in a new hire’s journey, where they transition from onboarding to becoming fully integrated and productive members of the team.

The final step of the onboarding check-in involves ongoing training, regular feedback, performance evaluations, and further social integration.

The focus is on ensuring that the employee is confident in their role, fully understands their responsibilities, and feels a strong sense of belonging within the company.

Onboarding Reviews inside Microsoft Teams

While there is no fixed end-point to the employee onboarding process, 90-day reviews are a great way to evaluate new hire performance through the onboarding period and see if employee and employer are truly a good fit.

90 Day Employee Onboarding Reviews in Teamflect

In order to conduct 90-day onboarding reviews inside Microsoft Teams or Outlook with Teamflect, all a leader has to do is head over to the “Reviews” module, and send out onboarding reviews to their new hires. Teamflect has a wide-array of customizable review templates for every review scenario, including 90-day reviews for onboarding periods.

Onboarding reviews doesn’t have to be manual! Leaders can simply automate performance reviews to be conducted at any interval or any number of days after an employee joins the organization.

90 day employee onboarding review template in Teamflect

Whether they are called onboarding reviews, 90-day reviews, or probation reviews, including them in your employee onboarding checklist has some remarkable benefits.

Feedback on Initial Performance: Provides an opportunity to assess and discuss the new hire’s performance, achievements, and areas for improvement during their first three months.

Alignment with Expectations: Ensures that the new employee understands and meets the job expectations set during the onboarding process.

Gathering Valuable Feedback: Collects insights from new hires about their onboarding experience, highlighting what worked well and what could be improved.

Refining Practices: Uses feedback to refine and enhance the onboarding process for future hires, ensuring a better experience for all.

Looking to streamline your performance reviews?
No sign-up required.
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Frequently Asked Onboarding Questions

What is an employee onboarding checklist?

An employee onboarding checklist is a comprehensive list of tasks and steps designed to help new hires acclimate to their new roles and the company culture efficiently and effectively.

Why is an onboarding checklist important?

It ensures that all necessary steps are followed to integrate a new hire smoothly into the company, providing them with the necessary tools, information, and support to succeed from day one.

What should be included in a new hire onboarding checklist?

Pre-arrival preparation (e.g., paperwork, equipment setup)
First-day orientation (e.g., office tour, team introductions)
Regular check-ins (e.g., 30, 60, 90-day reviews)
Onboarding surveys and feedback forms
Mentor-mentee programs
Ongoing training and development sessions

How can onboarding surveys benefit the onboarding process?

Onboarding surveys can provide valuable feedback on the effectiveness of the onboarding process, helping HR to identify areas of improvement and ensure that new hires are supported and satisfied.

What are some best practices for remote onboarding?

Schedule regular virtual check-ins
Ensure all necessary equipment and access are provided before the start date
Create a virtual welcome package
Use project management tools to track onboarding tasks
Foster virtual team-building activities

How often should you have check-in meetings during the onboarding process?

Regular check-ins are typically scheduled at 30, 60, and 90 days to review the new hire’s progress, address any concerns, and provide ongoing support and feedback.

Written by Emre Ok

Emre is a content writer at Teamflect who aims to share fun and unique insight into the world of performance management.

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