Best Preboarding Practices to Set New Employees Up for Success!

Imagine beginning a new position without ever having visited the building. In our increasingly virtual world, this is a reality for many people starting with new companies. On top of the stress of beginning a new job, they worry about where to park and if they need a QR code to get in the door. It’s making preboarding practices more important than ever!

We know exceptional onboarding improves retention and employment rates and helps new hires be productive more quickly. First impressions last! Those few weeks between accepting an offer and an employee’s first day are essential to making them feel at ease and excited to join your organization.

Your preboarding process doesn’t have to be an enormous undertaking. The main objective is to ensure your new hires have everything they need for a successful first day!

Best Preboarding Practices

Create a preboarding booklet

Brainstorm what new hires need to know before they begin their new position. Get into the mindset of someone coming into your company for the first time. What questions will they have about their role, company culture, processes, and policies? Be as detailed as possible and be sure to answer questions they may feel uncomfortable asking.

Information to Include in Your Preboarding Booklet

If working on-site:

  • Logistics such as parking, which entrance to use, and where to check-in.
  • Company policies on Covid-19 protocol. (Masks, QR codes, filtration systems, what to do if they have symptoms, etc.)
  • Work environment details (what to wear, start and finish times, accessibility, and food options, including allergies or special accommodations).
  • An overview of culture and the feel of the office. What can they expect on their first day?
  • Consider a virtual tour of the office if they were not on-site during the recruiting process.

If working remotely:

  • The technology they need for their first day.
  • An overview of which apps/software they will be using (and an opportunity to test it beforehand).
  • How culture fits into the online environment and any specific policies on virtual meetings.

Stay in touch 

After extending the offer, don’t stay silent for the weeks leading up to their first stay. Keep in touch, checking in to see if any questions have popped up, even if it’s just a quick note or video saying how excited you are to have them join you. To go above and beyond, reach out to your team and request they extend an introduction, so your new hire feels welcomed and appreciated.

Set up a buddy system

Pair each new employee with a buddy who can be their go-to for questions and concerns. This buddy is someone different from their supervisor, so there can be a more casual rapport. Choose someone well-versed in office policies, procedures, and cultures so that they can be a tour guide of sorts, showing your new employee the ins and outs of daily operations within the company.

Offer a voluntary day in the office

If your new hire is interested, offer them a lieu day in exchange for an in-office day before they start to get the awkward introductions out of the way. It gives them a chance to see the office as an observer without the pressure of performing on the first day.

Creating an effective preboarding process as part of your overall onboarding will help put employees at ease and ensure they feel welcomed and excited to start with your company. It doesn’t have to be complicated; simply staying in touch with the info they need will go a long way to helping new team members be as productive and effective as early as possible.

Get your copy of First30’s preboarding cheat sheet and guide HERE

First30 specializes in employee retention and employee onboarding. See our suite of services from our onboarding to our retention intervention programs HERE.
Planning layoffs? We also offer cost-effective (and excellent!) outplacement services. Download our outplacement brochure with pricing here.
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