Hiring and Onboarding Best Practices

Before hiring employees, it’s helpful to develop a clear onboarding process for your staff and new employees to follow. Typically, the process starts with one or more candidates submitting an application for employment. The application should include candidates' written permission to conduct a background check. Once you have completed the interview process and are ready to make the candidate an offer, be prepared to complete the following tasks, at a minimum:

  • Prepare an offer letter, job description, and any related documents, such as a confidentiality agreement.
  • Deliver employment documents to the job candidate obtain all necessary signatures.
  • Complete a background check. (Click on the Background Checks tab for more info.)
  • Have the employee complete new-hire paperwork, such as a direct deposit authorization form, withholding forms for Federal (W-4) and state (if needed), and benefit enrollment forms.
  • Verify the employee’s identity and eligibility for employment, as required by law.
  • Complete the employer side of the IRS I-9 form within three days of the employee’s start date. 
  • Add the new employee to your organization’s website, if needed.
  • Create accounts granting employee access to email, websites, and others if needed.
  • Conduct new employee orientation.
  • Deliver an employment handbook and obtain a signature confirming that the employee received it.

This list offers a starting point for developing an onboarding process. You may wish to include additional steps to support new hires in developing the skills and knowledge they need to be successful in your organization.

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