What is Onboarding?

Onboarding, also known as employee onboarding or orientation, refers to the process of integrating and familiarizing newly hired employees into an organization. It involves providing them with the necessary information, resources, and support to smoothly transition into their new roles and become productive members of the organization. 

Hire with remarkable speed and efficiency
Applicant Tracking, Recruitment Marketing, Sourcing and Talent CRM software are powerful alone, but unstoppable when used together!
Request a demo


➡️ Download The Ultimate Candidate Interview & Employee Onboarding Checklist!

Onboarding definition

Onboarding refers to the process of integrating and familiarizing a new employee with an organization, its culture, policies, procedures, and work environment. It is the initial phase of an employee's journey within a company, starting from the time they accept a job offer until they become fully productive and engaged in their role.

Employee onboarding process

The onboarding process begins when a new employee accepts a job offer and extends until they become fully productive and invested in their job responsibilities. During this process, various activities and orientations take place to facilitate the integration process. The process consists of several phases that guide new employees through the transition from being new hires to becoming productive members of the team.

By following these steps, organizations can ensure a smooth onboarding experience and set the stage for long-term success.

Phase 1: Preparing for Arrival

The first phase begins before the new employee's first day. It involves administrative tasks such as completing paperwork, setting up accounts, and gathering necessary equipment. This phase also includes communicating important information about the company, its values, and the expectations for the new employee's role. By providing this information in advance, organizations help new employees feel prepared and welcome from the start.

Phase 2: Orientation and Company Introduction

Upon the new employee's arrival, the orientation phase begins. This step involves introducing them to the company's physical workspace, colleagues, and key personnel. It includes a comprehensive overview of the organization's history, mission, vision, and core values.

During this phase, the new employee learns about the company's culture, its hierarchy, and communication channels. They are given an opportunity to ask questions and gain a better understanding of their role within the larger organizational context.

Phase 3: Job Training and Skill Development

In this phase, new employees receive training specific to their job responsibilities. They learn about the company's systems, tools, and processes relevant to their role. Training may include both formal instruction and hands-on experience.

This phase aims to equip employees with the necessary knowledge and skills to perform their tasks effectively. It may also involve shadowing experienced colleagues, attending workshops, or engaging in online learning resources.

Phase 4: Building Relationships and Integration

During this phase, new employees focus on building relationships with their team members and other colleagues. They are encouraged to participate in team activities, social events, and networking opportunities. Organizations may assign mentors or buddies to support the new employee's integration process and provide guidance. Building strong connections with colleagues fosters a sense of belonging and facilitates collaboration within the organization.

Phase 5: Ongoing Support and Evaluation

The final phase of onboarding involves providing ongoing support and evaluating the new employee's progress. Regular check-ins with supervisors and mentors help address any challenges or concerns.

This phase allows for feedback, performance discussions, and adjustments to ensure the new employee's continued development. By providing ongoing support, organizations can maximize the potential of their new hires and address any areas that need improvement.

Benefits of Effective Onboarding

Effective onboarding programs contribute to a positive employee experience, leading to improved job satisfaction and increased retention rates. When employees feel supported and welcomed from the start, they are more likely to become engaged, motivated, and productive.

Onboarding also helps reduce the time it takes for new hires to reach their full potential, saving the organization valuable resources. Moreover, a well-executed onboarding process enhances the employer brand and fosters a positive organizational culture.

Download our Ultimate Candidate Interview & Employee Onboarding Checklist to make sure you bring out the best in your new hires and provide an excellent experience from interview to employment. 

Do you use a modern recruitment software? If not, you're missing out. See how your life can be easier. Start your free 14-day TalentLyft trial.

Start my free trial