First day of onboarding

First day of Onboarding

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So, it’s the first day of onboarding for your new hire. They come to the office and…. 

You probably have read our previous post about how to plan the perfect onboarding, which is not just the first day, but the whole first 90 days and their recruitment process. However, we wanted to do a separate article on how to plan and structure the first day at the office foe your new hires! 

You want them to feel welcome, so hopefully you would have prepared something for them, so they feel you are really happy to welcome them. 

The onboarding process is much more than the first day at the office, or working remotely, but it is always good to have a fantastic first impression to take out the stress of “Would i feel welcome? Did I make a good decission changing jobs? 

So, how is a good first day! 

Everyone should know they will be arriving on that day. 

Let everyone know with an email or ask them to do an introductory video before they arrive!! This could be quite intimidating as they don’t know who is on the other side, but it could be quite fun and easy for the others to see who is coming. If the video is going too far, ask them 5 to 10 questions with a combination of personal and professional topics that could help. 

  1. Name
  2. The place you call home
  3. Your favourite place in the world?
  4. What is that you will be doing at our company? 
  5. What was your last job and where? 
  6. Which is your favourite movie? 
  7. Favourite food? 
  8. Hobbies? 
  9. If you could meet 5 people in the world, who would those be? 
  10. Tell us something about you that people usually don’t guess when they first meet you. 

You can be as creative as you want, but these questions and a nice casual picture could help with the team getting to know them before they arrive. Try to do a nice template on powerpoint and use the same one for everyone who comes in new. 

Make sure someone is there to receive them on their first day

Whether if you are onboarding remotely or at the office, make sure someone has blocked 1 hour to spend with them on their first hour. It could be the CEO or their Hiring manager. We are assuming you are reading this article from a small or medium company, so you will probably not have a dedicated HR department. If you are reading this as a HR professional to get some ideas, it could also be you 🙂 

Things that should happen on the first day of your new employee

  • On that first hour you could welcome them, have coffee, virtual or face to face!
  • Explain how happy you are that they have come into the team. 
  • Explain how their first days will look like. What they will learn, who will teach them… an agenda with some pre booked meetings would be ideal. 
  • Also, a document with all the things they need to learn, read and complete before the end of their first 2 weeks, or first month… 
  • An organogram should be nice! 
  • Explain whether they will have some days just to catch up and read, or whether they are going to be expected to work from the very beginning. 
  • Make sure they have all their access to systems and computer ready
  • Give them their access to the office/ if they have to have it
  • For those of you who are are in the office, take time to go through the floor and introduce them to the team. A simple hello will do, but it will break the ice for them to feel free to move around without feeling people are looking at them
  • If they are working remotely, make sure you introduce them on your virtual channel, slack, teams or hangouts. Just a quick message to say “Welcome XXX to the team. He/she joins today the XXX team” 

Meeting the team on their first day

Breaking the ice with the team is sometimes difficult if they haven’t been introduced properly or if they haven’t spent 15 minutes just talking about anything. 

It is a fantastic idea to book 15 minutes with their close team, the whole team if your company is under 15 or 20. 

Book these meetings in everyone’s calendar before the new hire comes onboard. This will force them to make some space and for everything to be smoother and more effective from day 1. 

What to talk about in these meetings? 

A little bit of chit chat and what every member of the team is doing in the company, how long they have been there, how they think they will be interacting… nothing specific, but just to say Hi in person, or through videoconference! 

Nice things to do on the first day of your new hire

It is not mandatory, but it is always nice to do something special for them, so why not put together a package with branded stationery and have it ready on their desk? If you have mugs or anything special, make sure they have it on their desk when they arrive. 

If they work from home, why not send it in advance? It will be a nice gesture and it will make a great impression. 

If you want to top it up, add some breakfast or a nice card to say welcome to the team, we are happy that you are here! 

If you are working together in an office, make sure someone goes out for lunch with them. Make sure they are not alone on their first day. 

Give them the contact details for the go to person, someone that could always answer their questions.

Preparing the first day of your new hire doesn’t have to be hard. However, spending some hours getting ready for it could bring you great results and a fantastic engagement from the very beginning! 

Don’t hesitate in taking care of these small details that make all the difference. Why spending so much time in the candidate experience and not focuss on their first day?


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