Onboarding best practices

For any company, hiring a new member of staff is a big commitment. The onboarding process – introducing a new member of staff to a business – is incredibly important. Done well, it should enable the new employee to feel at home straight away. A well-informed employee can make a positive difference to a business from day one.

Get the recruitment process right

It is vital to ensure that your recruitment process does not discriminate against candidates. While the vast majority of us appreciate that it is not acceptable to ask a woman if they are planning to have children, unnecessary job caveats should also be avoided. If a job doesn’t require the person to drive, why ask for a driving license?

Employers have an obligation to check that the potential employee is legally entitled to work in the country. Hefty fines can be imposed – up to £60,000 per illegal worker. The penalties are even stiffer if you are found guilty of employing someone who you knew or suspected didn’t have the right to work in the UK. An employer needs to conduct right to work checks BEFORE the person starts work. The types of check required will vary depending on the nationality of the potential new employee.

So, the interview has gone well, the candidate seems perfect, and you want to offer them the position. A job offer should always be put in writing. Alongside confirming the job title, salary, working hours etc, the offer letter gives the employer the opportunity to ask for proof of qualifications and the right to work in the country. (Plan ahead if you want to offer a job to someone from outside the UK as you will need a sponsor licence.) The offer letter forms part of a potentially important paper trail and helps to justify why the person was offered the job.

Onboarding - staff discussion

Onboarding preparation

An onboarding strategic plan can be extremely useful (and is something Blossom HR can help with). As an employer, being organised and prepared for a new starter sets the right tone. It is a terrific opportunity to reinforce that the employee has made the right choice and your company is worth staying with. (How off-putting is it to be greeted by a puzzled receptionist on the first day of a new job or find that there isn’t a desk for you to sit at…)

10 Onboarding best practices

The best onboarding practices will help to set expectations, clearly define roles, and create confidence and trust. They should go beyond showing a new employee where the WC and tea and coffee making facilities are! When it comes to onboarding best practices, do consider the following.

  1. Team introductions (formal and informal)
  2. Company tour
  3. Instruction/company manuals
  4. Policy and culture training
  5. Company benefits and paperwork
  6. How their role/team fits into the company
  7. Prepare the work area/desk/PC
  8. Install relevant applications, files and programmes on their PC/laptop
  9. Future training
  10. Explain the feedback process with you and/or their manager

The list above is far from exhaustive. Contact us for a bespoke onboarding plan.

Onboarding - staff meeting

Onboarding – An ongoing process

Onboarding starts the day a candidate accepts a job offer and ends when the new employee is performing to the best of their abilities. It isn’t a process that finishes after a few days. The quality of the onboarding experience will affect how the new employee engages and performs and probably determine their loyalty. It should be an important consideration for any business.