Onboarding checklist: the first 30 days

By Robert Half on 6th May 2020

It’s easy to underestimate the importance of a good onboarding checklist. More than just an opportunity to integrate a new employee properly, onboarding also helps to set the tone for the professional relationship and could determine the length of your employee’s tenure. What’s more — the onboarding process starts before the new hire has even set foot inside the office.

Our experts review the first month in a new job and what your onboarding checklist should contain for this initial time period.

Why is job onboarding so important in the first 30 days?

The first 30 days of a new job are the most crucial. The risks of poor onboarding are significant and can harm your new employee’s progress and your reputation as an employer. Our research shows that 91% of new hires would consider leaving a role in the first month. According to 36% of leavers, poor job onboarding was to blame.

During the first month, your onboarding plan should cover the basics of daily life at your company with a view to getting the new hire settled and working effectively. It will lay the foundation for a future of work with the company and will ultimately determine how well the employee integrates.

Onboarding checklist for the first month in a new job

Preparatory checklist

  • New hire paperwork
    Begin by ensuring you have all the HR and employment groundwork laid: a job contract, schedule, annual leave and sick day policies, compensation and benefits, job description and standard government forms. You’ll also need to make sure you have the necessary information to get your new hire up on the payroll system, such as bank details and national insurance number.
  • Equipment and work environment
    Successful employee onboarding should also include equipment procurement. Meet with your new hire’s manager and decide which software platforms and internal systems will be needed for the job. This may also include arranging training sessions, depending on your new hire’s level of familiarity with the equipment.
  • Establish a mentor and training
    Before you welcome your new employee, you’ll need to designate a mentor within the team. This person will be the first point of contact and someone they can shadow for the first few days until they find their feet.

New employee first day checklist

  • Basic integration
    The new employee first day checklist starts with an office tour, the provision of a starter pack and the completion of compulsory paperwork. This should include a run through of the employee contract, job description, daily duties, and benefits within the remuneration package.
  • Introduction to company culture
    Successful employee onboarding should also include team introductions (including introducing them to their mentor). You should aim to cover off company traditions, the social calendar, and potentially arrange a team lunch to encourage further bonding.
  • Establishing expectations and making introductions
    After the first day, your onboarding process will lay the foundation for job role success. This includes booking introductory meetings with key stakeholders, helping the new hire to collaborate with members of other teams, and laying out the expectations for their role.

The next stages of your onboarding checklist

Onboarding doesn’t finish after the first 30 days — aim to regularly check in with your new hire to chart their progress and provide support where necessary.

The job onboarding will continue for the next 90 days as your employee moves into their probationary period. This is the period of time which sees the biggest drop-off in new hires, so a detailed new employee first day checklist at this critical early stage should set you in good stead for the future.

Submit a vacancy today or browse our recruitment blog for more information on how to onboard an employee in the first month in a new job.

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