Candidate Onboarding Guide: Must-Have Activities For Effective Onboarding

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First impressions matter, and the onboarding process sets the stage for a new employee's journey within your organisation. The onboarding phase ought to be a welcoming experience, solidifying the employee’s decision to join your company. In this onboarding guide, we’ll discuss some of the game-changing activities that can contribute to your new hire’s successful transition. 

What is Onboarding for a Job?

Onboarding is a period where the employee transitions into their new organisation. It lasts for a couple of weeks to a few months, depending on the capacity of the company, industry, and specific role. 

One of the primary reasons why effective onboarding is crucial is because it reduces the employee’s time to productivity - or the time they can fully contribute to the organisation. 

Most onboarding phase always include the following activities:


Introduction to the Team

Companies always aim to deliver a warm welcome to their new employees. This includes introducing them to their colleagues, supervisors, and key team members. An introduction to the team helps new hires understand who’s in charge of different departments and who they should get in touch with about certain concerns. Moreover, it fosters a sense of belonging and connectivity.

Training on Policies

Onboarding is not complete without understanding company policies, values, and culture. This lays the foundation for alignment with organisational goals and expectations. 

You may want to consider providing an employee handbook in advance, so the new hire can read it before the training or orientation. That way, they can readily raise their concerns and clarifications. 

Role-Specific Training

To reduce time to productivity, it’s important to equip employees with the skills and knowledge needed for their specific roles. This ensures a seamless transition into their job responsibilities.

Answering HR Questions

Providing a platform for new hires to address any questions or concerns they might have on HR matters fosters open communication and helps ease any apprehensions.

Setting Up Work Station

Finally, an effective onboarding ensures that the physical and digital work environment is ready for the new employee. This includes access to necessary tools, technology, and a well-organised workspace.


Onboarding Guide: Game-Changing and Creative Onboarding Ideas

While the aforementioned activities are crucial, many employers have discovered that incorporating the following activities can be transformative in ensuring a successful onboarding process for new hires.

Taking Some Parts of the Onboarding Online

Taking specific parts of the onboarding process online doesn't just align with contemporary work trends; it also contributes significantly to the overall success of integrating new team members. Furthermore, leveraging on technology streamlines the process of onboarding. 

Here are some of the activities that you can take online:

  • Virtual welcome sessions, which can come in handy if some members cannot attend in-person introductions. 
  • E-learning modules provide flexibility for employees to access crucial information at their convenience. 
  • Digital documentation and paperwork to streamline the administrative process. New employees can complete essential forms electronically, eliminating the need for physical paperwork and reducing the chances of errors or delays. 
  • Online collaboration platforms, which can be utilised for mentoring. Employers can also use it for virtual team-building exercises, collaborative projects, and discussions. 

Taking some onboarding activities online not only enhances efficiency but also contributes to a more environmentally friendly and sustainable onboarding process. Learn more about virtual onboarding here

Incorporating Icebreakers and Games

While you discuss crucial matters during onboarding, it’s still important to add fun to the process. Icebreakers and games are crucial to break the monotony and give more chances for team members to interact with each other. 

Thus, incorporate icebreakers and team-building games into the onboarding phase. These help break down barriers, encourage collaboration, and create a positive and enjoyable atmosphere.

Providing a Welcome Gift

One effective way to welcome new hires is to offer a thoughtful gift. Providing a welcome gift goes beyond mere tradition; it can significantly contribute to the overall success of the employee onboarding experience because it initiates a positive employee relations. It showcases the organisation's commitment to employee well-being and satisfaction.

This onboarding guide gives you the following suggestions on what you can give as a Welcome Gift:

  • Customised Welcome Kits. Craft personalised welcome kits that include essential company information, a welcome letter, and branded merchandise such as a company mug, notebook, and perhaps even a custom pen.
  • Tech gadgets and accessories like wireless chargers, noise-cancelling headphones, or even stylish laptop sleeves can enhance the new hire's work experience. 
  • Personalised desk accessories such as engraved nameplates, custom mouse pads, or stylish desk organisers not only make the workspace more inviting but also show attention to detail and a commitment to the individual's individuality and productivity.
  • Company apparel and swag. Including a variety of swag items like water bottles, tote bags, or keychains further solidifies the connection to the company culture.

You may also create a beautifully designed welcome book or handbook that introduces new employees to the company's history, values, and team members. This comprehensive guide can serve as a valuable resource and reference, offering insights into the organisation's structure, mission, and day-to-day operations.


Assigning the New Hire a “Buddy”

Having a designated “buddy,” which is often a seasoned employee or mentor, helps new hires integrate more quickly into the company culture and work environment. The buddy serves as a friendly face, introducing the newcomer to colleagues, helping them navigate office protocols, and providing insights into the unwritten norms of the workplace.

This onboarding guide also highlights the following benefits of buddy system:

  • It offers on-the-job learning, providing a practical perspective on the company's day-to-day operations.
  • Peer mentoring provides a comfortable and approachable resource for clarifying doubts, seeking advice, and discussing any uncertainties related to the job
  • The buddy system is an opportunity for social connection in the new workplace. It can also alleviate the stress and anxiety of being a newcomer in the company. 

Having a Team Lunch

Organising a team lunch or social event encourages casual interactions. This informal setting allows new hires to build relationships with their colleagues, enhancing team dynamics during onboarding.

In addition to these activities, remember that you have the flexibility to incorporate additional elements based on the specific needs and preferences of your new hires. For example, you may add team building to the orientation to company policies, gamify the assignment of the mentor, and welcome new hires in your social media networks

Conducting Background Screening

The early stage of onboarding often includes running the necessary background checks.  It’s imperative that employers not skip them because background checks help verify the accuracy of the information provided by the candidate, ensuring a trustworthy and reliable team. 

By uncovering any potential red flags, such as criminal records or inconsistencies in employment history, employers can make more informed decisions about fully hiring and onboarding the candidates, fostering a safer and more secure workplace environment. 

Additionally, background screening contributes to maintaining a company's reputation, safeguarding against potential legal issues, and ultimately streamlining the onboarding process by preemptively addressing concerns that may arise later in the employee's tenure.


Being More Thorough in Adjudication

The adjudication process involves carefully assessing various factors, such as criminal history, employment verification, and professional qualifications, to ensure that prospective employees meet the necessary criteria and standards set by the organisation.

It can significantly contribute to an effective employee onboarding process by providing a thorough and fair evaluation of candidates' qualifications, background, and suitability for the job, thereby strengthening the decision to onboard them. 

Learn more about adjudication here

Set The Goals, Prepare a Checklist

To ensure no crucial steps are missed, create a comprehensive onboarding checklist that highlights the goals for the new hires. This checklist may serve as an onboarding guide for HR professionals and employers, covering all the activities mentioned above. Equally important, share this checklist with new employees, giving them visibility into their onboarding progress and fostering a sense of control and understanding.

Here are examples of an onboarding guide checklist. 

Streamline Your Onboarding With Veremark

To better streamline your onboarding process, partner with Veremark. We conduct comprehensive background checks to ascertain the candidate’s suitability for the position while staying compliant with the relevant laws and regulations. 

With Veremark, there are no long-term contractual commitments or lock-in periods -  you only need to order and customise the checks you need. Our system also seamlessly integrates into your workflow, ensuring a more effective adjudication process.

Learn more about our background checks here.

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What is Onboarding?

Essentially, the onboarding process includes steps that help new hires understand how things work in the organization they are now a part of. It may refer to the time period between the acceptance of a job offer by a candidate and their official start date; or, it may also be during the first 3 or so months of a new hire’s tenure at the organization. At this time, employers typically do several things: Collect formal paperwork that their candidates need to have on file such as resumes and other legal documents; Conduct necessary background checks; and provide the new hire with resources and training to help them acclimatize.

Why is Onboarding imporant?

For employers, a well-designed onboarding process minimizes risk, ensures compliance, and improves employee retention and productivity. For new hires, the process allows them to get to know their team and company culture, and see their path to growth within the organization even while still in their early days.

Why do some companies conduct remote onboarding instead of in-person onboarding?

Some companies conduct virtual onboarding because they hire remote employees. However, those with in-person work arrangement also consider remote onboarding because it has several benefits, such as time-saving aspects, being more cost-effective, and being highly flexible.

What steps can you take to make sure your remote onboarding process is effective?

The steps you take to ensure effective onboarding varies, but some of the most important are to establish clear communication channels, prepare a checklist so as not to miss steps, and keep the new hires as engaged as possible.


What background check do I need?

This depends on the industry and type of role you are recruiting for. To determine whether you need reference checks, identity checks, bankruptcy checks, civil background checks, credit checks for employment or any of the other background checks we offer, chat to our team of dedicated account managers.

Why should employers check the background of potential employees?

Many industries have compliance-related employment check requirements. And even if your industry doesn’t, remember that your staff have access to assets and data that must be protected. When you employ a new staff member you need to be certain that they have the best interests of your business at heart. Carrying out comprehensive background checking helps mitigate risk and ensures a safer hiring decision.

How long do background checks take?

Again, this depends on the type of checks you need. Simple identity checks can be carried out in as little as a few hours but a worldwide criminal background check for instance might take several weeks. A simple pre-employment check package takes around a week. Our account managers are specialists and can provide detailed information into which checks you need and how long they will take.

Can you do a background check online?

All Veremark checks are carried out online and digitally. This eliminates the need to collect, store and manage paper documents and information making the process faster, more efficient and ensures complete safety of candidate data and documents.

What are the benefits of a background check?

In a competitive marketplace, making the right hiring decisions is key to the success of your company. Employment background checks enables you to understand more about your candidates before making crucial decisions which can have either beneficial or catastrophic effects on your business.

What does a background check show?

Background checks not only provide useful insights into a candidate’s work history, skills and education, but they can also offer richer detail into someone’s personality and character traits. This gives you a huge advantage when considering who to hire. Background checking also ensures that candidates are legally allowed to carry out certain roles, failed criminal and credit checks could prevent them from working with vulnerable people or in a financial function.

Transform your hiring process

Request a discovery session with one of our background screening experts today.

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