The Remote Onboarding Blueprint: Welcoming New Hires from Afar

Job-hopping is the new normal.

People have become not just digital nomads but career nomads as well—fleeing from one organisation to another, gathering priceless experience along the way.

Considering the high costs of hiring new employees, and even the higher cost of hiring bad ones, companies have responded by beefing up their salary and perks packages hoping to hold on to the good ones already in the fold.

But a big piece in this puzzle is Onboarding—the process by which companies acclimatise new employees to their roles.

These days, much of the process is done virtually.

As a business owner/HR practitioner, here’s a virtual onboarding blueprint that you can use every time you initiate a fresh hire.

But first…

Onboarding Is Not Orientation

Many folks think that onboarding is simply getting some paperwork done and then orienting new recruits about what their job entails.

Onboarding is so much more than that. It’s a long-term commitment.

Onboarding is a company’s way of helping newcomers get through one of the most emotional moments of their professional life. (1 in 4 will cry in their first week.)

Being a new employee is not easy. Not only are you unsure about the ins and outs of your new job, you’re not even sure if your boss will like you or if your colleagues will come to think of you as one of their own.

According to BambooHR, 44% of new hires regret their decision after 1 week. And by the first month, 70% have already determined if they’re going to stay or not.

Proper onboarding is necessary not only so that employees decide to stay. It’s also the key to launching successful members of the organisation.

So now, let’s look at what a virtual onboarding would look like.


This covers the time the candidate accepts the job offer, to his first day on the job. Here are some of the elements included in this phase:

  • Paperwork—Send the employee all the necessary documents—from employment contracts to tax forms. Ensure that all these are filled out accurately and have been electronically signed. If you have any clarifications as to his details, this is the best time to ask.
  • Handbook—Send your new recruit a copy of the rules and policies of the company. This gives him time to familiarise himself with the structure of the organisation as well as the expectations from the team.
  • Tech Set-up—Ensure that all the necessary hardware and software tools are up to snuff—providing specific instructions for what platforms or applications to use. Also, provide him with access to all relevant systems.
  • Welcome email—This officially informs the employee of his status in the team and assures him of the help of the group. The document also outlines onboarding activities—especially on his first day.


The first day, even when it’s all virtual, is nerve-wracking. It’s one of the most emotional times for a newcomer. He will need a lot of guidance, assurance, and handholding.

Do not loose the new guy into the organisation like a headless chicken. To set him up for success, here are some things to do on the first day:

  • Orientation—Present the most important protocols and practices within the company. Give him likely work scenarios and provide details on what actions to take.
  • Virtual Tour—Take your fresh hire on a guided tour of the platform, tools and applications he’s going to use—giving him the general lay of the land. The tour should give him an overview of how to do his work.  (Don’t overwhelm a newbie on his first day.)
  • Welcome Video Call—Arrange for him to formally “meet” the folks he will be working with. HR (or perhaps his immediate supervisor) should take the lead in introducing him to individuals in the team. (Don’t forget to mention his credentials, skills and past achievements.)
  • One-on-One Meetings—Depending on the role, one-on-one meetings might be a good way for the employee to gain footing on the job.
  • Check-in throughout the day— Maintain regular communication with the newcomer throughout the day to ensure they feel supported and have everything they need to succeed in their new role. A simple message like, “Hey, how are you doing? Feel free to let me know if you need anything,” can go a long way.


  • Task Training—After the first day, you start to go granular. Drill down on the specific tasks—providing the trainee with firsthand experience on the various tasks involved. (Do not assume that the newbie already knows everything.)
  • Assign Mentor/Buddy— Pair new hires with seasoned colleagues. The latter can serve as mentors to help them navigate the organisation. They can answer questions or provide insider knowledge that can serve the newbie well.
  • Establishing helpful metrics—Provide the employee with standards that can guide his performance. Ensure that he understands what’s expected of him, including productivity levels and targets. (For example, how many “widgets” is he expected to produce per day or week?)
  • Joining Meetings—Have the new guy sit in on the regular meetings to quickly learn the ropes and understand how the business can provide value to customers.
  • Onboarding Feedback—Ask how the onboarding process can better serve the individual, assuring him of the company’s commitment to helping its employees.


  • Continued Training—By the first month, the individual would have learned the ropes. The focus of this training would then be about more efficiency, better output and more creativity.

  • Social Integration—Encourage the new guy to join social activities that don’t have anything to do with the job. Friendships are built during these virtual hangouts, and this bond between colleagues can spur fealty to the company itself.
  • Performance Review—Give performance reviews early on so that mistakes can quickly be corrected. Guide the employee on the steps to take for cases when they seem to have difficulty meeting standards.
  • Eliciting Feedback—Feedback is not a one-way street. By the first month, the individual would be familiar with how things work and can sense the weaknesses and strengths of the systems in place. The company would do well to listen to somebody with “fresh eyes” and in a position to suggest something out of the box.


  • Provide growth opportunities—Employees want to grow on the job. Companies that support this instinct can quickly become a breeding ground for excellent individuals who are on the road to success and who may very well lead the company someday.

  • Continuing feedback loop—Giving and receiving feedback is an ongoing conversation between management and its people. The feedback loop ensures that leadership knows what’s going on with the team. At the same time, it assures individuals that their needs are being heard and accounted for.
  • Celebrating milestonesCelebrated milestones are one of the biggest pats on the back for any employee. They symbolise the company’s acceptance and appreciation of people’s contributions. Even a quick acknowledgement during a Zoom meeting (eg. “Today is Lisa’s 5th year with us.”) will make the employee feel like gold.

Onboarding should never be taken lightly—virtual onboarding even more so. With this blueprint, your company can sufficiently support your fresh recruits and help them get on the path to success.

Kinetic Innovative Staffing understands just how crucial remote onboarding is. We’ve done it for clients around the world.

Kinetic helps companies find competent remote professionals from software developers to lawyers. With a candidate database of over 4 million remote professionals, Kinetic can fill a broad range of roles.

And we do it at a fraction of the cost. Our clients save about 70% in labour fees while enjoying world-class talent.

If this sounds like something you would like to explore for your company, do not hesitate to get in touch with us and we’ll get you all the help that you need.


Kinetic Innovative Staffing has been providing hundreds of companies in the Asia Pacific, North America, the Middle East, and Europe with professionals working remotely from the Philippines since 2013. Get in touch to know more.

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