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How to Create an Employee Onboarding Checklist

employee onboarding checklist

Employee onboarding is a crucial process that integrates new hires into the company culture and sets them up for success, which is why an employee onboarding checklist is a must.

A well-designed onboarding program can significantly reduce employee turnover and increase productivity. So, to ensure a smooth and consistent onboarding process, HR departments use an employee onboarding checklist.

By following the steps outlined in this checklist, organizations can create a comprehensive onboarding program that makes orientation easier and helps new employees prepare for their new roles.

Let’s see what onboarding should look like and what you shouldn’t miss during the process!

What is Onboarding?

Employee onboarding is a crucial process in any organization. It is the process of integrating new hires into the company culture, preparing them for their new role, and setting them up for success.

A well-designed onboarding program can help new employees feel welcome and valued, reduce turnover, and make teamwork easier.

The process of onboarding typically starts after a candidate has accepted an offer of employment and continues through the employee’s first few weeks on the job. It is a comprehensive process that involves a series of steps that you must complete before the new employee can start working.

The HR department typically oversees the onboarding process, but managers and team members may also be involved in various stages of the process. The goal is to ensure that the new employee has everything they need to be successful in their new role, including a clear understanding of the company’s expectations and goals.

The Importance of Employee Onboarding Checklists

Employee Onboarding Checklists


The process of onboarding a new employee can be daunting, especially for organizations with a large number of employees. It’s crucial to have a well-designed onboarding program to ensure that the new employee is adequately prepared and set up.

That’s where a great employee onboarding checklist comes into play.

An employee onboarding checklist is a document that contains a series of steps that you must complete before the new employee can start working. The checklist helps the HR department ensure that all the required paperwork is completed, necessary training is provided, and the new employee is introduced to their team and colleagues.

It’s a comprehensive tool that simplifies the onboarding process and makes it much easier to manage.

One of the significant benefits of having an onboarding checklist is that it ensures every new employee goes through the same general onboarding process. This consistency is essential, as it creates a level playing field for all employees, regardless of their department or seniority.

It also ensures that every new employee has the same opportunities to succeed and contribute to the company’s goals.

Another important benefit of using an onboarding checklist is that it helps new employees feel welcomed, valued, and prepared for their new role. Starting a new job can be stressful, and having a clear onboarding process can alleviate some of that anxiety.

A consistent onboarding process can also help new employees feel like they’re part of the team right from the start, which can boost their productivity.

By setting clear expectations and goals, the onboarding checklists set the tone for the employee’s entire attitude towards the company. A successful program can help reduce employee turnover and increase productivity, and retaining talent is crucial for any organization’s success.

Employee Onboarding Checklist: Example

general onboarding process


When a new employee joins the team, it’s important to make sure they have a smooth onboarding process. It will set the hires up for success at your company.

Here is a good employee onboarding checklist example to consider:

#1. Confirm With HR

Before bringing a new hire on board, it’s important to confirm with HR that all necessary paperwork has been completed and that the employee is ready to start. This includes verifying that the employee has passed any necessary background checks the company requires.

It’s essential to work with HR to ensure all the necessary documents for the new employee are in place. This step helps to avoid any legal issues that may arise in the future.

This step is particularly important for organizations that require specific documentation, such as visas or work permits. Verifying that the employee has passed all required background checks is critical to maintaining the safety and security of the company.

#2. Gather The Paperwork

Once HR has given the go-ahead, it’s time to gather all the necessary paperwork. This includes tax forms, employment agreements, and any other documentation required by law or company policy.

When gathering the paperwork, ensure that every document is completely accurate and up-to-date. This will help the new hire avoid compliance-related issues and ensure that the new employee is paid promptly.

Incomplete or inaccurate paperwork can lead to compliance-related issues or delays in the new employee’s payment. Moreover, it can create a negative first impression, which can impact the employee’s productivity.

One way to streamline this process is by using a digital onboarding platform that allows new employees to complete and submit their paperwork online.

Digital onboarding platforms can help HR departments save time and reduce errors by automating the paperwork process. It also allows new hires to complete their paperwork remotely, which can save time.

#3. Request Equipment

Make sure the new hire has all the equipment they need to do their job. This might include a laptop, phone, or any other necessary tools. It’s important to request the equipment well in advance of the employee’s start date to ensure everything is ready on time.

Asking for the necessary equipment is essential to ensuring the new hire can perform their job effectively from day one. It’s important that the equipment is of good quality and that the new hire is trained on how to use it before starting.

#4. Send a Welcome Email

A welcome email is a great way to introduce the new hire to the team and make them feel welcome. In the email, include a brief introduction of the new hire, their role, and their start date.

Sending a welcome email to the new hire is an opportunity to make them feel like they are a part of the team before they start. It also helps to create a positive first impression, which can significantly impact their morale and productivity.

#5. Send a New-Hire Email

Before the new employee starts, it’s important to send an email to the team introducing the new hire and providing some background information about them.

Sending a new-hire email will help the team create an inclusive environment for the new hire. It also helps to create a sense of anticipation and excitement for the team, which can lead to a positive and productive work environment.

#6. Prepare The Workspace

Preparing the new hire’s workspace is essential to ensuring they can start working immediately after their arrival. It’s important to make sure their workspace is clean, organized, and set up according to their needs.

Stocking their workspace with necessary supplies can help avoid any unnecessary interruptions to their work.

Overall, investing time and effort into preparing the new hire’s workspace can have a positive impact on their onboarding experience and help them feel more comfortable in their new role.

#7. Create Check-In Plans

It’s vital to create a comprehensive plan for how the new hire will be onboarded. This includes setting up regular check-ins with their manager or assigning a mentor to help guide them through the onboarding process.

The check-in plan should cover the first few weeks of the new hire’s employment and include specific goals and objectives that the new hire should aim to achieve.

During the first week, the new hire should have daily check-ins with their manager or mentor to ensure they’re settling in and have the necessary resources to perform their job.

In the second week, check-ins should be less frequent, perhaps every other day, to ensure they’re still on track and you’ve answered all their questions. By the third week, the check-ins should occur once a week or as needed.

The check-in plan should also include opportunities for the new hire to provide feedback on their onboarding experience. You can use this feedback to improve the process for future hires. Regular check-ins with the manager or mentor can help identify any issues early on and address them before they become bigger problems.

#8. Greet The New Hire

Make sure the new hire feels welcome on their first day. Greet them when they arrive, give them a tour of the office, and introduce them to their colleagues.

Greeting the new hires on their first day is an essential part of creating a positive onboarding experience. It helps to create a welcoming environment and makes them feel valued and appreciated. Giving them a tour of the office and introducing them to their coworkers can help create a sense of community and belonging.

#9. Send Them to Orientation

Finally, make sure the new hire attends any necessary orientation sessions. This might include training on company policies and procedures as well as any relevant compliance training.

Attending orientation sessions is a must for the new hire to understand the company culture and procedures. It also helps them understand what you expect from them in their new role.

Compliance training is also important to ensure that the new hire is aware of any legal or regulatory requirements.

Employee Onboarding Checklist Template

Employee Onboarding Checklist Template


Use this checklist template as a starting point for your onboarding process.

This template is divided into three stages:

Pre-Onboarding Checklist

The pre-onboarding stage involves everything you need to do before the new hire’s first day. This stage is crucial for ensuring that the new employee is ready to work from the very start.

Here are some ideas:

  1. Send a welcome email to the new hire
  2. Gather all the necessary paperwork
  3. Confirm with HR that the new hire is good to go
  4. Request necessary equipment for the new hire
  5. Send new hire’s emails to the team
  6. Prepare new hire’s workspace
  7. Set up check-ins with the manager or mentor
  8. Provide the new hire with an orientation schedule
  9. Schedule any necessary training or compliance sessions
  10. Make a business signature for the new hire
  11. Provide the new hire with the company handbook and policies
  12. Connect the new hire with relevant team members
  13. Set up the new hire’s email, computer, and any other form of contact you use
  14. Schedule the new hire’s first week of meetings
  15. Provide the new hire with a list of company resources

First-Day Checklist

The first day is crucial for creating a positive onboarding experience for the new hire.

Here are some examples:

  1. Greet the new hire on their first day
  2. Introduce the new hire to team members
  3. Give the new hire a complete tour of the office
  4. Provide the new hire with the necessary equipment and supplies
  5. Review company policies and procedures
  6. Review new hires’ job responsibilities and goals
  7. Discuss company culture and values
  8. Set expectations for communication and feedback
  9. Schedule regular check-ins with the manager or mentor
  10. Review the new hire’s orientation schedule

First Month Onboarding

The first month of a new employee’s job is critical because you need to ensure they feel supported, valued, and set up for success.

Here are some tasks to consider:

  1. Schedule regular check-ins with the manager/mentor
  2. Assign the new hire to relevant projects
  3. Provide the new hire with ongoing training and development opportunities
  4. Review the new hire’s progress toward goals
  5. Provide the new hire with performance feedback
  6. Connect the new hire with relevant team members
  7. Review the new hire’s benefits and compensation package
  8. Provide the new hire with opportunities to give feedback on their onboarding experience
  9. Set new goals and objectives for the upcoming month
  10. Celebrate the new hire’s one-month anniversary with the team


Employee onboarding is a critical process for any organization to ensure new hires are set up for success. By using an onboarding checklist, HR departments can ensure a smooth and consistent onboarding process that helps new employees feel welcomed, valued, and prepared for their new roles.

A well-designed checklist can also help reduce employee turnover and increase productivity. By following the steps outlined in this guide, organizations can create an effective onboarding program that sets new employees up for success from the very start.

Employee Onboarding Checklist FAQ

#1. What to include in an onboarding checklist?

An onboarding checklist should include tasks such as confirming paperwork, providing equipment, sending welcome emails, preparing workspace, setting up check-ins, greeting the new hire, and sending them to orientation.

You should divide it into stages and cover tasks such as introducing the new hire, reviewing policies and procedures, discussing job responsibilities and goals, providing training opportunities, and setting new goals.

#2. How long should the onboarding checklist be?

The length of an onboarding checklist depends on the needs and requirements of the company and the new hire. It should be comprehensive but also concise, easy to follow, and divided into stages. You should include all necessary tasks and actions to ensure a smooth onboarding experience.

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