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What is “onboarding”?Onboarding includes delivery of some of the traditional “new employee orientation” provisioning and informational elements, as well as a means through which new employees acquire the necessary knowledge, skills and behaviors to become effective and successful in their roles. In simple terms, it’s the process of providing what a new employee needs to be prepared, and feel welcome, engaged and motivated upon their arrival at Boise State. To help facilitate a successful transition, we follow the following principles and practices.

We must connect with new
employees early and often.
In advance of your new employee’s first day of work, the onboarding process begins with a series of automated email communications that will welcome your new employee and provide timely information regarding tasks they need to complete, such as their I-9 form, benefits enrollment, direct deposit, and emergency contacts. Additionally, they will receive information about their email, network access, parking permit and BroncoCard. This demonstrates to the new employee that we truly appreciate their decision to join Boise State and reassures them that we want them to feel welcomed and prepared for their new position.

We must recognize that
onboarding is a process,
not an event.
Onboarding takes time. Providing too much information all at once can be overwhelming and confusing. Our onboarding starts with two communications to the new employee prior to their start date, followed by additional emails starting on their first day and continuing at specific intervals for the next 90 days. The supervisor also receives a new hire checklist before their employee’s start date, and is copied on most of the employee’s onboarding communications. These interactions with the supervisor help the new employee acclimate and start down a positive path. Included will be a survey assessment of the onboarding process itself. The onboarding communications vary depending upon factors such as benefit eligibility, and type of transaction generating the emails. Someone who is a new hire receives more communications than would a current employee who is being promoted.
The onboarding communications for a new hire or rehired employee delivered over several months include:


    Two communications:

  • General welcome letter sent after the employee has accepted their offer of employment and background checks and verifications are completed.
  • Provisioning of network accounts, Boise State email address and I-9 form information – generated as soon as PeopleSoft hire record is created.


    One employee communication and one supervisor communication:

  • Pre-hire checklist is sent to the supervisor 14 days before the start date.
  • Employee receives logistics reminders regarding I-9, parking, etc. seven days before their first day.


    Three employee communications:

  • Welcome email, with reminders about completing the I-9 form, time reporting and compliance certification information, BroncoCard, and self-service instructions for direct deposit and form W-4 – sent on the first day of work.
  • Benefit-eligible employees receive instructions to view the online benefits orientation and complete their benefits enrollment forms on their first day.
  • After 14 days employees receive a third email with information regarding university policies, required trainings, Standards of Conduct, and our Statement of Shared Values.


    Employees receive three communications, and one supervisor email is issued:

  • 21 days after their start date employees receive information regarding goal setting, and working with their supervisors on a specific path for their success.
  • Supervisors receive an email at the same time with similar information regarding goal setting to help facilitate those conversations with their new employee.
  • After the employee has been on board for 60 days they receive an email regarding “Best Kept Secrets” at Boise State – highlighting useful and interesting resources and activities that they may want to explore.
  • 90 days following the employee’s start date information outlining learning and development resources and programs such as Shared Leadership, and the Tuition Fee Waiver benefit is provided.


    We want to know what the employee’s onboarding experience was like.

  • Employees will receive an invitation to complete a short online survey 28 days after their start date, to provide feedback on their first few months’ experience as a new employee at Boise State.

Managers play a pivotal role
in the onboarding success.
Part of a successful onboarding process will include a genuine effort by the manager to establish a strong, positive working relationship with the new employee. Discuss the mission and vision of the department. Describe your communication style and measures of success within your area. A new employee’s relationship with their manager is often the most important aspect of their working life. We encourage managers to invest their time in their new employee’s growth and development.

Solidify your team. New employees who feel an immediate connection with their co-workers are much more likely to stay at their employer and typically enjoy success at earlier stages in their career. Take the time to provide opportunities for your new employee to become acquainted with and learn from their colleagues, and begin participating in departmental projects and activities.

Provide early exposure to
strong, positive leaders.
A very positive and motivating experience for new employees occurs when a senior staff member takes the time to speak to them and share the vision and mission of both the department and organization. This opportunity is often overlooked, but it can quickly strengthen an employee’s commitment to their new employer and give them the boost they need to experience success.