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8 Mistakes Employers Make When Onboarding New Hires

8 Mistakes Employers Make When Onboarding New Hires
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Summary: Find out the 8 most common onboarding mistakes you should avoid to make the best first impression on your new hires.

What To Avoid During Employee Onboarding

Organizations can make mistakes during the onboarding process simply by engaging in complicated strategies. However, it's also common for some companies to have no strategy at all, thus not preparing their new hires for their new role. In this article, you'll read about 8 common onboarding mistakes that jeopardize the company's image and the new employee's productivity. This list will help you design an effective strategy to welcome new hires.

8 Things You Shouldn't Do When Welcoming New Hires

1. Skipping Pre-Boarding

When hiring a new employee, both the HR team and the hire have to prepare and sign their fair share of paperwork. It's a necessary yet time-consuming process. However, you shouldn't wait until their very first day to do all that. Pre-boarding is the process of signing paperwork, informing new employees of what they're doing on their first day, and getting to know them a little before diving into all that as soon as they step foot in the office. Take advantage of the time before they are officially hired to prepare the documents and get a head start.

2. Not Being Organized

Successful onboarding needs a high degree of organization and preparedness to carefully plan tasks your new hire will take over in a short period of time. The best thing you can do is create a schedule for each day and what your new member is expected to do. Of course, you shouldn't overwhelm them with tasks and information. You have to find the right amount of tasks to achieve maximum productivity and efficiency. To ease this process, your HR department can acquire onboarding platforms that will help. These platforms will immediately give your new employee access to all of their accounts and documents.

3. Bad First Impressions

First impressions are extremely important. Being prepared for employee onboarding, as we stressed, is the key to a good first impression. You don't want to be caught off guard when your new employee joins the team. The first days are already overwhelming, and you need to be able to make them better. You can start with a warm welcome and introduce them to everyone. Make sure they feel comfortable having their first meeting with the rest of their colleagues and arrange that. If your new employee is working remotely, be sure to send them their equipment beforehand.

4. Confusion On Expectations And Goals

A new hire's tasks and goals should be clear from the very start, as well as what you're expecting from them. There's nothing more frustrating than starting a new role without having the slightest clue of what you're supposed to do and what the company wants from you. Apart from their individual goals, highlight the organizational ones, too. That way, you will create an environment where their personal and work goals will combine, thus having engaged employees that do their best to achieve them. Your people are your company's core, so make sure to involve them in the group goals early on.

5. Overwhelming Them With Information

Just as we said, the first couple of weeks at a new job can be stressful. Thus, it's important to ease your new employees into their tasks and not just throw them into the deep end. One of the most common onboarding mistakes is bombarding them with too much information. Instead, evenly distribute everything you want them to know in order not to alleviate stress. It may seem logical to just share everything they need to know in a day to speed up the process. However, it will be much less productive and bring the opposite results. You don't want them to forget important information, right? So, be cautious and don't overwhelm them.

6. Not Training Them

It doesn't matter if you have hired talented people with previous experience; you have to train them. Not every role is the same, and their previous company might have done things differently. Your new employees are not expected to be experts in your way of doing things. Even if they are, though, training is necessary for the smooth running of the employee onboarding process. Good training sessions help employees be more prepared and feel knowledgeable. Plus, it's nice for them to see you care and want to teach them new things or update their existing knowledge. Trusting them is completely different from zero training. There's always something new for them to learn.

7. Mentioning Past Employees

You may feel the urge to share your experience with the employee that they are replacing, whether it was pleasant or not. However, new hires don't often appreciate this since they can feel inferior or uncomfortable. If you want to set an example, good or bad, you can do it in the form of tips. Steer clear of mentioning names and specific situations. If you throw shade on ex-employees, your new members will probably think that it's a common practice, and you'll make a bad first impression.

8. No Information On Company Culture

Of course, if you have hired a new employee, it means that you think they will be a good fit for your corporate family and a valued member. However, that doesn't necessarily mean that they automatically mesh with your company culture. Aligning with what your organization believes and swears by is something that needs to be trained and learned through experience. So, it's a nice idea to inform them of the corporate culture, and their coworkers can even get involved. For example, filling them in on policies, procedures, values, or other aspects of your organization. Remember that some new employees may come from larger or smaller companies or even toxic work environments. You need to inform them about your ways of working so that they can feel more comfortable.


Onboarding can be tricky, even for the most experienced companies. This is why you should consult this list to avoid common onboarding mistakes and put your new hires at ease. Before their first day, kick things off with pre-boarding activities, like signing the necessary paperwork. When it comes to expectations, the key is to find the right balance between being transparent with them about goals without overwhelming them with too much information. Last but not least, offer them adequate training, regardless of their experience level.

Looking for a content provider who can help you enrich your new hire training experiences? Check out this list of top outsourcing partners who specialize in onboarding.