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Onboarding provides new employees with a window into the company’s values and beliefs. When an onboarding program is developed and executed correctly, it makes the transition smoother for everyone involved.

Human Resources managers help business leaders prepare effective onboarding programs, which welcome new employees. Onboarding begins with a welcome pack and documents the new employee needs to complete.

Integrating a new employee into the company can take up to 90 days. Orientation is part of the onboarding process and is intended to be one event. New employees receive paperwork about the company’s benefits and tax forms during orientation.

Planning begins before Day 1

To be effective, onboarding should begin when the candidate accepts the company’s offer for employment, well before the first day of work. Employers want to make the transition as smooth, efficient and effective as possible.

Onboarding planning includes deciding where new employees will sit, ensuring they have the appropriate equipment and supplies at their workstation, and setting up their work email before their first day.

The first day should include a tour of the company, an introduction to co-workers and lunch with the hiring manager. A buddy should be assigned to the new employee to help with the process.

The new hires’ first impression sets the tone for their employment with the company. You want the first impression to be a good one.

The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) recommends an orientation meeting cover four areas:

  • Human Resources: An introduction to the company, its mission and culture; a review of the employee handbook; a review of the company’s organizational chart; and information about benefits and enrollment.
  • Safety: A discussion about the company’s safety and health policy issues, including emergency evacuation and job-related safety.
  • Department overview: An overview provided by a manager from each department.
  • Key administration policies: A discussion of the company’s anti-harassment policy and policies pertaining to pay period, travel and training requests, along with security, telephone systems, computer systems and log-ins, and supplies and equipment.

Human Resources should schedule regular check-ins with new employees at 30 days, 60 days and 90 days, which are performance milestones and part of the performance review.

Virtual onboarding

The COVID-19 pandemic may have changed the way some companies are onboarding new employees. If your employees are working remotely or you’re working from home, you may be doing virtual onboarding. Technology will be an essential part of the virtual program.

Address hardware and software needs and have digital copies of important documents, including benefits enrollment forms and employee handbooks. Remote work can make communication more difficult, so make sure managers check in with new hires regularly and new employees have lists detailing the names of employees, their job descriptions and their contact information.


You should seek feedback on your onboarding program. Send the employees a survey asking them to rate the process. For example,

  • How was the benefits overview?
  • Were you introduced to your team?
  • Did you have to wait for your work email to be functional?

An onboarding program sets the stage for productivity and retention. Culture acclimation and follow-ups define a good onboarding process. I would be happy to help you make sure your onboarding process is efficient and effective.  I’ll be covering this topic in an HR course for the Workforce Development Program at Quinsigamond Community College in Worcester this fall, with more details to come soon.

Requiring COVID-19 vaccinations could be tricky

A recent survey found that nearly two-thirds of U.S. employers plan to require employees to prove they have been vaccinated for COVID-19. But employers must proceed with caution to avoid violating an individual’s right to refuse to be vaccinated because of a medical reason, disability or sincerely held religious belief.

The survey, conducted by Arizona State University’s College of Health Solutions with support from The Rockefeller Foundation, found that 65 percent of employers plan to offer incentives for employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccination, while 63 percent will require proof of vaccination. In addition, overall, 44 percent of employers plan to require all employees to be vaccinated, 31 percent will encourage employees to be vaccinated and 14 percent will require some employees to be vaccinated, according to the survey, which was released in April.

[Read more]

Mental illness, burnout widespread in workforce

May was Mental Health Awareness month, but there has been an increased incidence of behavioral health symptoms since the start of the pandemic. Be observant and take steps to offer support to your employees who need assistance.

In the U.S., we work hard and don’t have as much paid time off as workers in other countries, such as those in the European Union. This affects our work-life balance, a key factor in preventing burnout. Mental health, work-life balance and burnout are all interrelated, and so not surprisingly, mental illness and burnout have become prevalent in the workforce.

[Read more]

50+ Job Seekers meetings

The 50+ Job Seekers Networking Group has several workshops and meetings scheduled this summer. All meetings are virtual.

The dates and topics of the 50+ Interactive Workshop Summer Series are:

  • Tuesday, July 27: Creating Cover Letters and LinkedIn Invites to Network
  • Tuesday, Aug. 10: Art of Closing and Negotiating: Get the Offer You Want
  • Tuesday, Aug. 24: Summer Fun: Job Search Jeopardy

Tuesday sessions meet from 10 a.m. to noon.

The Massachusetts Library Collaborative meets from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m. the first and third Wednesdays of the month from July through December. The next meeting is July 21.

The Latino/Hispanic 50+ Interactive Workshop Series meets from 1 to 3 p.m. the second and fourth Wednesday of the month. The next meetings and topics are:

  • July 28: Using LinkedIn as a Powerful Job Search Tool
  • Aug 11: Get Ready for Your Interview: Prepare!

The virtual doors open 15 minutes before the program starts. Pre-registration for first-time participants and advance registration is at https://50plusjobseekers.org/outreach/registration/

Those who are already registered with the program will receive an email about the 50+ Job Seekers workshops.

Reach out to me

To contact me, download my digital business card by texting HRPRO to 21000 or email me at melody@melodybeachconsulting.com.



Melody L. Beach Consulting Group
Proud Member of
Northeast Human Resources Association (NEHRA)
Northeast Human Resources Association (NEHRA)
Northeast Human Resources Association (NEHRA)
Webster Dudley Business Alliance (WDBA)
Webster Dudley Business Alliance (WDBA)
AARP (American Association of Retired Persons)
PARWCC The Professional Association of Resume Writers & Career Coaches Woman in Business (WIB)
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
BNI Referral Champions Worcester Chapter
Society of Human Resource Management (SHRM)
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
50+ Job Seekers
Massachusetts Councils on Aging (MCOA)
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
Human Resources Management Association (HRMA) of Central Massachusetts
Women's Information Network (WIN)
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce
Worcester Regional Chamber of Commerce

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