It’s gratifying when a candidate turns into an employee. You’ve recruited your perfect fit. Effective onboarding of new employees is critical to team building as well as to company culture. By contrast, in all solid corporations both small and large, much effort goes into the recruiting process and drawing the brightest talent into your team. It’s important to continue the strong momentum with effective onboarding.

Let’s review key steps to effective onboarding

Set up clear expectations

New employment is one area of life where there shouldn’t be surprises. Set up clear expectations on both parts. Review with the employee before their official day what they can expect in the office, out of the office if they work remotely and also in terms of team collaboration and culture. Help them be at ease with the first few days clearly planned. By the same token, make company policies that are important to know right away very clear. Examples are punctuation, weekly conference calls and similar guidelines. Setting up clear expectations ahead of time will make the onboarding process run more smoothly.

Have their work space amply prepared

In the busy company atmosphere, important details of onboarding can easily go neglected. Make sure this doesn’t happen in your new employee onboarding.

Here are some ways to ensure your new employee feels welcomed and prepared for their new workplace. 

  1. Have their office ready.
  2. Enlist your IT department set up the email of the new employee and have this information and all passwords ready for them on, or before, their very first day.
  3. Similarly, the IT department can clear any previous user information from hardware and software systems that will be used by the new employee.
  4. Prepare the team with whom the new employee will be working to expect their arrival. Encourage personal or email introductions on the first day.
  5. Provide your employee manual and any other important materials to them on their first day. If you don’t have an employee manual or yours needs updating, see that these tasks are completed prior to their onboarding. A brief and straightforward employee manual can be designed and completed in just a few days.

Outline training thoroughly

Many industries have new employee trainings that can last up to a month. In smaller companies they may last a couple of days. Still, in the start-up environment training is on-the-job. Whenever possible in your onboarding process, outline for your new employee what they can expect in terms of training. If they will not be receiving a great amount of formal training, it’s fair to let them know that up front. Then, pair them with a seasoned mentor to help guide with learning. If yours is one of the fortunate cultures to have thorough training systems in place, cover this with the new employee as well. How long will each day be? How long is the entire process? Are there stages to the training regimen? Finally, what are the expectations of leadership with regard to balancing training with new primary responsibilities?

Major General (Retired) Mike Diamond is CEO and founder of Diamond Strategy Group. Diamond Strategy Group is a leadership development and consulting company. We focus on improving the quality of leadership within organizations by utilizing the same methods Mike and his consultants have used in both military and civilian sectors. We invite you to stay connected! Visit us online at and connect with Mike at Diamond Strategy Group on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, or e-mail us at for more on training and coachsulting for your company!

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