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  • Writer's pictureGabi

On-boarding Have You Feeling Blah?

Updated: Mar 8, 2019

I-9? Check

W-4? Check

Harassment policy? Check

Handbook review? Ugh, check

Employee feeling intimidated on your first day of a new job? Double check!

Often times our on-boarding practices do not go beyond a checklist of forms and policies, and as an employer, we definitely must address these documents but the delivery doesn’t have to be so blah.

Developing an intentional on-boarding plan may ensure:

You’ve included everything that a new employee needs to have knowledge of. You've planned for this new employee coming onto the team.He/she/ze receives a warm welcome to their new position, team and company.There’s appropriate training developed and prepared for the new employees success.


A couple things to help add a little more cushion around the first day…

Before Start Date:

Call the candidate a week before their start date with a “what to expect on your first day” summary: “bring you ID’s, team lunch, dress code, we brew Stumptown coffee every morning and have an assortment of Tao of Tea here, getting to know the operation, shadowing, etc…” you get the idea here. 

The day before, call once more and remind them of the address, who they will meet with and what time to be there… we’ve found this really helps reduce the “first day cold feet”. 

First Day:

Give them a copy of the on-boarding agenda for the day/week/month. Include the checklist of documents and policies, training schedule, new hire buddy, email, passwords, keys, and any other pertinent information they will need to get them started.


The standard handbook and harassment delivery practice is either reading it to the employee or just giving them the policy to read on their own. Fun? Not really, and I can’t say that this stuff is fun to any new employee. We are often times just checking a box to reduce employer liability, but there are other ways! I’ve found animated videos and/or interactive presentations are great alternatives to “check the box” AND engage your new employee, while ALSO continuing to build your company culture…cool idea, right?! We think so! 

I leave you with this question…What does your on-boarding process say about your company?


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