Onboarding Process Checklist

Onboarding Process Checklist
Onboarding Process Checklist

Onboarding Process Checklist

When you hire a new employee, you want to get them up to speed as quickly as possible so they can do their job effectively and feel like they are an integrated part of the company. Onboarding employees using a pre-developed checklist is a great way to do this. It can help make sure nothing gets forgotten along the way. This also means that your new staff doesn’t get overwhelmed with so much information their first day that they cannot remember it all.


A good onboarding process is valuable no matter what industry or role a new staff member is hired into, but onboarding processes can’t be one size fits all. It is important to consider the best way to approach onboarding for the specific workers that will be joining your team. For non-desk employees, like construction workers or warehouse and manufacturing staff, using all computer-based tools like email for your onboarding probably isn’t the best choice.


Instead, the best onboarding process might be done by SMS text messaging, so your new hire can get all the information they need while they are in the field or on the floor. Yourco is a text messaging platform that gives managers the functionality to communicate clearly with non-desk employees. Company leadership can carry out onboarding efficiently without employees needing to download or install anything on their devices. Messages appear just like a standard SMS text message, and don’t require a smartphone or WiFi connection.


In this article, we’ll focus on how to get the most out of your onboarding program for these staff members. We’ll answer questions like:

What Is the Onboarding Process?

In general, the onboarding process for new employees is the standard way new staff gets set up to start work. It is everything that happens from when someone is hired until they are up and running with a full workload. It will likely include tasks like:

  • Filling out needed legal forms for taxes, benefits signup, and receiving paychecks
  • An introduction to managers and other coworkers
  • Learning how the standard processes work

The ideal onboarding process is something that a manager develops over time. It’s important to think about all elements that should be included to keep workers compliant with legal requirements, able to do their jobs well, and integrate into the company culture. Having a checklist already prepared that lays out not just what an employee needs to do, but when they should have it finished and what kind of follow-up they can expect, makes this process easier for everyone.

What Are the 5 Steps to Create an Onboarding Program that Managers Can Use?

To be able to use an onboarding checklist, you have to create one. The good news is if you do it well, you only have to make it once. After you have the basic steps for onboarding laid out on a checklist, you can make small adjustments for different job roles you might be filling, and add resources as you learn what new staff need most.


One of the manager tools for onboarding checklist creation is the ADDIE model, developed by the Society for Human Resource Management. This model lays out five steps that should be in a manager onboarding toolkit when creating these checklists. The steps are:

  1. Assessment – Look at what the company already does to onboard employees. Decide what works well, what needs to be added, and what isn’t working.
  2. Design – Make a plan for what onboarding should look like. Think through what staff need to do, how you can help them accomplish it, and what timeline matters to your business.
  3. Development – Create the resources needed. Gather all the forms into one place, and draft the text messages that will go out with each one. Use Yourco’s platform to schedule the texts with attached forms or materials to send on a schedule that keeps new staff on track without overwhelming them.
  4. Implementation – Put the onboarding checklist into practice. Check in regularly with the new hire to make sure they are receiving the messages, understand what they need to do, and have the tools they need to complete each step.
  5. Evaluation – Review how onboarding went from both the manager and new employee perspectives. Think about what can be done differently next time to make things go even more smoothly.

How Do I Create an Onboarding Checklist?

Now that we’ve laid out some specific steps to follow to create an onboarding checklist, there are a few more things you’ll want to keep in mind as you begin to make your own.

What Are the 5 Cs of Employee Onboarding?

The 5 Cs of onboarding are important elements of the onboarding process that need to be built into a full onboarding checklist. These Cs stand for:

  1. Compliance – New staff must fill out legal paperwork as they begin working. The Yourco platform makes it easy to send a text with each required form attached, along with follow-up reminder texts.
  2. Clarification – Recent hires will have questions about exactly what they need to do and when as they begin their work. Texts are an easy way to encourage two-way communication so staff can ask clarifying questions and get the answers they need quickly.
  3. Confidence – Clearly communicated instructions and follow-ups instill confidence in staff members that they are doing what’s expected of them. Texted reminders and regular check-ins can be especially important for giving new hires assurance that they aren’t forgetting important steps.
  4. Connection – Connecting with managers and other coworkers matters to new team members. Knowing they can easily stay connected while on the job improves communication, morale, and productivity. Yourco’s texting platform even includes translation software so it’s easy for non-native English-speaking staff to connect and be understood.
  5. Culture – Company culture is largely defined by internal communication. Poor communication can be detrimental to morale, while good communication keeps everyone happy and on the same page. When your existing team already works well together, it’s important that newly hired members can get on the same page quickly. Text communication can help get them there.

What Are the 3 Most Important Elements of Successful Onboarding?

Another way to break down the most valuable parts of an onboarding checklist is to consider the three most important elements. These are:

  1. Participation – For onboarding to be successful, the new employee needs to actually participate in it. This is why it really matters that managers choose a way of communicating that staff can easily engage with. Trying to conduct effective onboarding via email  won’t get the response from non-desk workers that you need, because they can’t easily access work messages sent this way. Sending texts through a platform like Yourco enables your staff to quickly get what they need and respond easily, increasing participation.
  2. Milestones – Giving new employees a giant list of things to do without any more guidance is overwhelming. Successful onboarding checklists should break down tasks into easily digestible chunks. Including due dates is also a good thing, so staff knows which things are most urgent and how to prioritize tasks. Managers can even schedule text reminders with Yourco’s platform about which part of the onboarding checklist a new employee should be working on at the beginning of the first few days or weeks.
  3. Follow-up – Scheduling regular check-ins during onboarding is vital to a successful process. A quick review of their onboarding checklist can make sure new staff and managers know what progress has been made. Having a 30/60/90-day plan for what your newly hired employee should be doing as they get more familiar with your job will help ensure continued success. In addition, asking for feedback from staff as they finish their onboarding can show you where you can improve the process for the next round of hiring.

Checklist Example of an Effective Onboarding Process

Let’s look at some onboarding process examples for different industries that normally employ a large percentage of non-desk staff members. We’ll cover the ten basic levels or steps that are important to include in any onboarding checklist for this type of position, along with specific examples you might want to have in your checklist.

What Are the Ten Levels of Onboarding That Should be Included in a Checklist?

Giving newly hired employees a list of the general categories of tasks they’ll be working through during their onboarding is a great place to start. You could even send them a text with the basic overview before their first day, with more details about each one as they are ready for them. Here are the basic category levels you’ll likely provide:

  1. Completing Required Forms | Yourco enables easy attachments for forms that can be filled out and returned quickly by new employees. Some of these forms will include:
    • Federal tax forms like W-4 or W-9
    • State tax withholding forms
    • Paycheck deposit information
    • Employee handbook receipt
    • Drug test consent forms
  2. First Day Instructions | Send a text before a new hire’s first day welcoming them to the job and giving details they’ll need before they show up to work. These could include:
    • Location, date, and time of their first-day
    • Name and contact details of their supervisor in case they have any questions before they begin
    • Schedule of activities for the first day or week
    • Dress code and any safety gear they should wear
  3. Welcome Packet | On the first day, you likely want to give new staff some additional documents to make their onboarding easier. They might not be able to read it all on the first day, but sending it via text with attachments means they can review it when they get a chance and refer back to it as needed. These could include things like:
    • Employee handbook
    • Salary and benefits details
    • Contact information for managers and supervisors
    • Safety training materials
  4. Access to Tools and Equipment | Before a construction worker or machinist can begin working, they’ll probably need specific safety equipment and other specialist tools to do their job safely and effectively. This access might include:
    • Personal safety equipment like a hardhat and safety goggles
    • Access codes or keys to tool storage spaces
    • Computer and IT logins for programs they will be using
  5. Work Area Assignments | New staff will need to know where they should store their belongings, park their vehicles, and find their assignments for the day. These work areas could include:
    • Locker assignments for personal possessions
    • A designated workstation where they will carry out their tasks
    • A company vehicle allocated for their use
  6. Site Tour | If a new employee will be working in a specific building, you’ll need to show them around. If they will be working in the field, they’ll need to know what kind of amenities to expect when they get there. This tour might include details like:
    • Parking areas
    • Cafeteria and breakroom
    • Manager offices
    • Restrooms
    • Equipment storage spaces
  7. Introducing a Mentor | Assigning an experienced team member to mentor a new hire is a great way to make sure they have in-person support for their first few weeks on the job. This mentor can:
    • Help them find the resources they need as they get started
    • Give them hands-on examples of how to do specific tasks
    • Answer quick questions as they come up
  8. Setting Goals | You’ll want to work with new staff to help them understand what you expect them to be able to do on the job and on what timeline. If you expect them to be up to half capacity by the end of the first week and full capacity after three weeks, they need to know what these specific benchmarks are. 
  9. FAQs | Everyone’s first few weeks on the job come with a lot of questions. Sending a text with a few of the most commonly asked questions and answers can help new staff understand more about their new role and company. It might include common questions like:
    • How do I let the company know I need to stay home sick?
    • What are the staff holidays?
    • Who do I go to if I have an issue with my paycheck?
  10. Training | There are likely technical skills and safety requirements a new staff will need to learn as they begin working. This might include:
    • Scheduled training sessions, either in person or virtually
    • Required testing for certifications

Yourco: The Texting Platform for All Your Employee Onboarding Needs

Yourco knows how important it is that you can easily communicate with your staff when they aren’t sitting at a desk all day. That’s why we created our texting platform, to empower managers to communicate effectively with messages that show up just like regular texts to employees.


You can schedule texts, attach documents, translate information into 135 different languages, and easily send to customizable groups. There’s nothing for your employees to download or install, and they do not need a smartphone or wifi access. Learn more about how we can help you simplify your onboarding process here, and get in touch for more information.

Additional Reading


Yourco has helped to change the way we communicate at McCarthy Auto Group. We have nearly 700 employees and 80% are non-desk based, communication is a challenge. Yourco provides a quick easy way to reach everyone within our organization and a secure way for employees to reach HR and leadership without a computer.

Felisha Parker
VP of HR at McCarthy Auto Group