Casual.PM Blog

Employee Onboarding 101: A Step-by-Step Guide to Employee Onboarding Process

According to the Glassdoor’s research, organizations with a strong onboarding process improve new hire retention by 82% and productivity by over 70%. 

New hires can be overwhelmed with a lot of new information and a new environment. A well-organized onboarding process can help to learn the internal processes of the company smoothly and without hassle. It isn’t surprising. New employees can form their opinion about the company and decide whether to cooperate with you or not based on how you’re performing an onboarding process. 

A successful onboarding will help you keep new team members motivated and productive. Your professional approach to this process will assist in engaging employees and enhancing retention by 25%.

In view of recent events in the world, COVID-19 has completely changed the approach to onboarding. Many companies offer remote workplaces and onboard new employees online. All paperwork and communication are digitized, so organizations use different onboarding software to create an online plan for new team members. Here we’re going to present you with a step-by-step guide and useful online onboarding tools for managing your onboarding process in the best way.

Why Every Company Needs a Documented Onboarding Process

Why Every Company Needs a Documented Onboarding Process

Gallup’s analytics shows that only 12% of employees agree their organization does a great job of onboarding new employees. Why is the rate so low? A clue is in the lack of an onboarding plan or it is inconsistent and ineffective. 

Whether you win the hearts and minds of new employees or not, it depends on your well-considered and strategized onboarding program. The key to success is to focus on people, not only administrative tasks.

An onboarding process is divided into some stages so that employees can adapt and learn new information in a step-by-step manner. When all processes of each stage are documented, it’s easier to allocate time and effort during the onboarding period. Moreover, HRs and PMs will be able to supervise this process based on onboarding documentation and won’t miss important steps.  

5 Onboarding Stages and Why Each of Them Is Equally Important

According to Panopto, most HRs professionals agree that corporate onboarding should last 90 or 100 days. It’s enough time for new employees to get acquainted with their main tasks and the company’s culture, receive sufficient job-oriented training, and be capable of doing the job independently. 

An onboarding program usually consists of 5 stages, such as: 

  1. Pre-hire
  2. The first day
  3. Orientation
  4. Training
  5. Performance

You define activities that should be done on each of them to help new employees understand the responsibilities. Let’s take a closer look at what happens during each stage.

Pre-hire (Onboarding Before the First Day)

It’s a phase before the first day of work. The new hires can still have thoughts, doubts, and concerns. You can increase their engagement and сonfidence via communication and support.

Do the basic paperwork. It’s easy to send out a digital copy of the offer letter to new employees by using WorkBright or DocuSign, electronic new hire paperwork services.

Provide new hires with a guide. It will be a nice gesture to send a guide providing new team members with the necessary information, such as navigation and transportation to the office, parking area, etc.

Set a time framework for onboarding. Determine the roles of HRs, direct managers, and co-workers in this process. Also, you can set goals for new employees and prepare a speech about the company’s culture and work environment.

The First Day

Employee Onboarding Process - the first day

The journey is starting. Make your new joiners’ first day enjoyable and memorable. On this day it’s important to focus on corporate culture and help employees to feel included. Let new team members learn more about the company, team, and their roles.

Present a welcome package. One of the ways to impress your new hires is presenting a welcome package with brand stuff. Perfect ideas are a T-shirt, a notebook, a pen, a water bottle, etc. It will surprise employees and make a positive impression. 
Send a greeting email. This way, new employees will be aware of the activities schedule of the first day and feel like a part of the team.

Introduce the team and a newbie to each other. You can organize a meeting in a conference hall, or gather online by utilizing one of the top video conferencing software according to DGI Communications:

‍The first day is the introduction day. Providing your new employees with all necessary organizational information and making them feel comfortable are vital elements of this day. 


Show an informative presentation. Demonstrate a company's history in a timeline format, emphasize your mission and vision, and what role of each department is in achieving the overall goals. Make the display fun and showcase amusing photos of your team and executives. It’s important to specify position information and expectations. Then, you can tell new team members about professional ethics, policies, etc.

Arrange a personal meeting with the manager. According to LinkedIn's “Inside the Mind of Today's Candidate“ report, 72% of respondents consider one-on-one time with their direct manager is the most important part of onboarding. It's a precious time to establish a trusting relationship and discuss long-term cooperation.


Every company is interested in getting their new team members up to speed as fast as possible. Training is an essential part of the onboarding process. The main goal of this stage is to provide new employees with useful materials and help them plug smoothly into the work processes. 
Conduct a job knowledge test. Check what employees already know and what skill gaps they have. Based on the findings, you can adapt your training program to the needs of the learners.

Use interactive e-learning scenarios. It is a well-known practice, which helps to make a training process more effective and interesting. There are a lot of various onboarding services for training your new hires in the most impactful way. One of them is Tranual, employee training software. As an alternative, you can use Eduflow, Lessonly, TalentLMS, or Kitaboo Insight online learning programs, which allow creating custom training courses from scratch.

Showcase business processes visually. With Casual online project planning tool, you’ll be able to present business processes visually.  It will help you organize the training process  more conveniently. You can display connections between different tasks, so new employees will be able to see what goes after what. 


It’s the final stage of the onboarding process. It means a new employee has become a full-fledged team member and is ready to work independently. And as a result, he or she can make meaningful contributions to the company’s workflow. 

Assess progress. It’s expected that an employee is aware of processes and tasks, which he or she will be responsible for. Here you can assess the progress of an employee during the onboarding period and draw a conclusion.
Ask for feedback. At this stage, an employee already has a certain opinion about the company’s different aspects, position, and professional opportunities. So, it’s a good idea to ask for feedback about the work environment and discuss further cooperation.

Create a Clear Onboarding Workflow

An onboarding process is a crucial thing in cooperation between new employees and a company. Give enough attention to creating a detailed, clear onboarding workflow. Make your new team members feel welcome and engaged during the whole onboarding process. 

More and more companies prefer to digitalize the onboarding process. There are a lot of specialized onboarding tools, that will be good helpers in handling your entire HR operation and onboarding new employees successfully.  
HR information solutions.BambooHR, Talmundo, Kin HRiS, Zenefits are the most popular platforms. They offer a broad feature set for small and medium businesses.

This software helps to create a structured workflow and streamline the onboarding process. Also, it’s possible to view and analyze reports on employee turnover and performance to become more effective and efficient in the onboarding process.

Communication apps. During onboarding, new employees should have an opportunity to be in touch with HRs, managers, and team members. Use one of the communication apps and let newbies ask any questions via messaging. If you have your workplace on the Slack platform, you just need to add new employees there and guide them through the channels. Also, you can choose between Chanty, Fleep, or Flock online communication software.
Online project management tool.Casual is a great option for presenting onboarding processes and tasks in a visual way. You can structure a separate workflow for each position in a step-by-step manner. Besides, it allows building dependencies between steps. One of the most attractive features of this platform, you can take snapshots of the workflow and use them in the onboarding presentation.

Using mentioned-above tools you will make an onboarding process pleasant and productive for you and your new employees.

Onboarding Best Practices From Google, Facebook, and Other Big Tech Companies

Onboarding Best Practices From Google Facebook and Other Big Tech Companies

Google, Twitter, Facebook are iconic companies and popular places to work. Each of them implements a solid, well-managed onboarding process. What practices do they use for doing an onboarding process in the best way?

In Google right before the first day, managers get an email with the list of things to do. It contains organizational, practical points, which they will need to discuss and set up with newbies. The interesting fact is this practice has increased the productivity of new hires by 25%.

Also, Google likes the idea of mentorship, so a new hire is assigned a mentor, who is an employee at the company. Moreover, Google uses new hire checklists to manage all the processes of onboarding. All these things help new employees to join the team and learn internal processes smoothly and quickly. 
Twitter practices a “Yes-to-Desk” approach. It means the time from a hire says “Yes” until they sit at the desk. Employees get a T-shirt and a bottle of wine when they start. Also, they have breakfast with the CEO and lunch with the entire team. The onboarding process lasts up to the next month and a hire immerses in processes by following the day’s activities immediately. 
In Facebook, they conduct an onboarding process for engineers in a six-week boot camp. Here new employees learn their responsibilities and the company’s culture. The philosophy of Facebook's training program is to provide new team members with useful tools for practical work. So, from the first day, employees start working on their first projects. It shows that the company believes in new hires and allows them to express themselves as soon as possible.


In the world where employees have a lot of job choices and regularly switch employers, you need to do all your best to implement a successful onboarding. It isn’t an easy process to integrate and retain new hires, but with a prepared onboarding program you’ll simplify it. 

With the help of onboarding tools, you’ll be able to plan all stages of the onboarding process in a step-by-step manner. Moreover, you’ll make a positive impact on new employees, show the company's culture and ethics in a proper way. As a result, you’ll get productive, engaged team members, who are satisfied by their workplace and team.