Improving the Employee Onboarding Process from Start to Finish

May 13, 2021
Improving the Employee Onboarding Process from Start to Finish
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Why is Onboarding so Important?

In today’s competitive job market, companies need to do all they can to find, attract, and hire the right employees. Fair enough, yet surprisingly, even this isn’t enough to guarantee success.

To make sure employees are really able to make a difference and help the company become more competitive, new hires must be able to hit the ground running on day one.

This is why employee onboarding is so important. A good onboarding program gets the employer-employee relationship started on the right foot and contributes to increased morale, productivity, and engagement.

Yet a bad onboarding experience falls short of these benefits and inevitably leads to wasted time, money, and effort. Without an engaging new hire experience, your organization will find it increasingly difficult to attract and retain the best talent.

Plan for Success, Right from the Start

It all leads to an important question: What can you do to improve your onboarding process and make sure your new hires are happy, productive, and positioned for maximum success?

One of the first ways to accomplish this is to think about the entire process, including the right strategy and tools to support it.

For example, developing a detailed new hire checklist is a great way to consider the entire process, make sure nothing is overlooked, and ensure the entire experience is as smooth as possible. When creating new hire checklists, it’s important to think beyond traditional HR responsibilities. Other departments such as IT, payroll, and facilities usually play an important role in onboarding new employees

Involve these departments to give new hires everything they need all at once, while also demonstrating that your company has it all figured out!

“As soon as we saw HR Cloud’s Onboard demo, we knew this was the perfect solution for us. We loved that it was extremely simple and powerful out of the box, but that we could customize it with advanced capabilities to make it work in our company setting. We were sold.“ - Elisa Garn, Vice President, HR and Talent, Christopherson Business Travel.

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Things to Consider When Developing Your Onboarding Checklist

It’s important to remember that the onboarding checklist is a vital document and one that should intuitively guide a new hire through all the steps of your onboarding process

To make sure you give them everything they need—and help them hit the ground running on day one—consider all of these areas when developing your checklist.

Your corporate culture: 

Plan to share important information to help new hires gain a better appreciation of your corporate history, values, and overall brand.


Details about their position:

New hires can benefit from understanding where their position fits within the overall organization, and how it contributes to helping the company achieve its overall goals.

Information about their department or the whole organization:

Include additional details such as all the other positions in their group or department, organizational charts, and more.


Consider highlighting any training they may need, either in the short term to get up to speed or for longer-term options.


Any checklist should include specific goals and objectives expected of this new employee, including details on how they’ll be measured.

Onboarding tasks:

Outline all of the activities you’ll help new hires complete as part of their introduction to your companies. Examples of this include things like setting up laptops, creating logins and passwords, getting an official badge, learning where to park, and just about anything else that a new employee would need.

What’s on a Typical Onboarding Checklist?

Once you’ve determined what to include in developing your overall checklist, what should it include?

  • New hire paperwork, such as I-9 and W-4 forms 

  • A statement of corporate values

  • A video that introduces the new hire to the company, including a brief overview of important products, services, and your overall brand

  • A detailed list of activities for the first day

  • A list of important contacts within various departments, including contact information

  • A timetable of important activities, and what to do if they have questions

More than just Paperwork

So many people tend to associate onboarding with paperwork. It’s true that paperwork is an important part of the process, but a successful onboarding process goes well beyond enrollment forms and payroll documents.

Instead, onboarding involves various meetings and important actions that must be carefully coordinated. Many innovative HR departments now assign a dedicated onboarding coordinator to spearhead the entire process. Part leader, part counselor, this coordinator goes over all the steps that must be accomplished, and also plays a role in scheduling all of the vital steps. 

Onboarding Goes Well Beyond Day One

A new hire’s onboarding experience goes beyond the first day. The entire experience can take several weeks, if not longer. Along the way, various benchmarks may be established, helping new employees provide feedback about their work experience thus far and how they feel about the organization.

Everything about onboarding is intended to make the new hire feel welcome, valued, and empowered to do the job they were hired to do. This last sentiment is becoming more important as millennial and Generation Z employees begin to make up a larger portion of the workforce. These generations value the ability to contribute to the success of an organization and are not shy in speaking up to express their opinion.

This is a significant shift away from traditional hiring methods, where employees were brought on board, left alone to fill out paperwork and learn about their position, and then simply follow orders from their manager.

“We use Onboard to set up very detailed workflows, including multi-contributor tasks, notifications, reminders, and dashboards to see exactly where each onboarding experience stands at any given time.”

Miki Loveless, HR Business Partner, Christopherson Business Travel

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Onboard by HR Cloud

HR Cloud’s Onboard solution now helps automate and improve the entire onboarding experience. Onboard streamlines the entire process and gives new employees the tools they need to make their first great. 

For example, our Form Builder capability helps to eliminate what could be mountains of paperwork. You can easily create all the digital documents a new hire needs to complete and make them available in an easy-to-access self-service portal. 

With Onboard, new hires have more time to make the right decisions when completing important forms. We also help you provide pre-built I-9, W-4, direct deposit forms, and more—all part of a full library of form templates available in the Onboard solution.

We even offer easy drag-and-drop capabilities to design customized documents to collect the additional required information. No matter what you need to improve your onboarding experience, HR Cloud has you covered.

Making the Future Better

HR Cloud is committed to providing the resources necessary to make onboarding effective. HR managers understand that orientation is the first step in what is hopefully a long career path. This means that the information gathered will help the employee begin an employment journey with the new company. We provide solutions and allow you to be even more efficient in the employment process.

For more information on how to use HR Cloud to improve your overall onboarding process—and achieve impressive new results—please contact us today.

About HR Cloud

HR Cloud is a leading developer of HR software and HRMS solutions for businesses with a focus on effective employee engagement. HR Cloud empowers teams to easily onboard new hires, manage employee data, create a company social network, and support employee development. HR Cloud was created by the leaders at NEOGOV, the market and technology leader in on-demand human resources software for the public sector, with more than 1,500 government agencies and educational institutions using NEOGOV technology. 

HR Cloud is a modern and powerful cloud-based HRMS solution with a complete suite of HR functionality, including core, performance, onboarding, recruitment, absence management, and time and attendance.  

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About Author: This article is written by a marketing team member at HR Cloud. HR Cloud is a leading provider of proven HR solutions, including recruiting, onboarding, employee communications & engagement, and rewards & recognition. Our user-friendly software increases employee productivity, delivers time and cost savings, and minimizes compliance risk.

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