Contact us
You are here:

Successful onboarding
from the first working day to the end of the probationary period

Your first day in the new job is right ahead! This is the beginning of an exciting, yet stressful time in your career. As a new employee, you have to get used to new colleagues and a new environment.

Our onboarding process is designed to help you have a smooth start in the new company. After all, you need get acquainted with a new culture, learn new workflows, and find your own role and identity within the team.

Onboarding: What does that mean?

The term onboarding means “taking on board” – in this case, taking someone on board of the company. It doesn’t mean, however, to take a person on board for just a short period of time but to systematically integrate this person into the new company and the team, both professionally, socially and culturally.

In this onboarding process, your supervisor defines your future responsibilities, explains the company’s goals and gives you an understanding of the corporate culture. Joint feedback is an important factor. During the probationary period, it is important to find out whether both parties meet each other's expectations and if they fit together as people.

Onboarding is therefore not limited to your first working day but over the first weeks to months. Companies now utilise a structured onboarding process, which is usually made up of three phases:

The first phase of the onboarding process begins when you sign your employment contract. Ideally, as a new member of the team, you will afterwards receive all relevant information regarding your first day of work, information on any required work documents and an outlook on the first few weeks in your new job.

The first phase of the onboarding process begins when you sign your employment contract. Ideally, as a new member of the team, you will afterwards receive all relevant information regarding your first day of work, information on any required work documents and an outlook on the first few weeks in your new job.


First of all, arrive. This is the motto by which you will start your first day in your new job. Your supervisor and HR staff will welcome you and introduce you to your new colleagues. You will be shown your future workplace and receive the necessary (work) equipment so you can work productively right from the start. In many organisations, new employees are supported by a mentor or direct colleague during the onboarding process. This person will instruct you on your work projects, answer your questions and make sure that you feel completely comfortable right from the start.

First of all, arrive. This is the motto by which you will start your first day in your new job. Your supervisor and HR staff will welcome you and introduce you to your new colleagues. You will be shown your future workplace and receive the necessary (work) equipment so you can work productively right from the start. In many organisations, new employees are supported by a mentor or direct colleague during the onboarding process. This person will instruct you on your work projects, answer your questions and make sure that you feel completely comfortable right from the start.


In this phase of the onboarding process, your new employer will focus on providing you the best possible training and help you integrate into your team. You will get  to know colleagues from other departments with whom you may also work.

In this phase of the onboarding process, your new employer will focus on providing you the best possible training and help you integrate into your team. You will get  to know colleagues from other departments with whom you may also work.


Onboarding processes: What you should know before your first day of work

If your new employer has not yet established a standardised onboarding process, we recommend that you be proactive and make the onboarding positive and profitable for everyone.

For example, if you do not know exactly when to arrive on the first day, you should gather this information yourself one to two weeks before your first day of work. Get in touch with your contact to find out if there is an onboarding plan for new employees and what your first days in the new job will look like.

You can also ask about the usual dress code. Even if you have already met supervisors and HR staff during the interviews, asking about any dress code speaks in your favour and shows that you are willing to integrate into the team right from the start.

Before your first day of work, you can also memorise the names of your future colleagues. You’ll surely find them on networks such as Xing and LinkedIn or on the company’s website.

7 tips for successful onboarding

Your first day is imminent. You will want to leave the best possible first impression with your new employer. Present yourself as an interested, friendly and ambitious new team member – and start this new chapter in your career with the right attitude.

  1. 1
     
  2. Meet your new colleagues

    When you are introduced to your new colleagues, besides being attentive and remembering their names, you should be interested in what topics they are each dealing with. Perhaps you would like to invite them to a personal and professional meeting already in your first days? Invest time and show commitment at the beginning of the onboarding process. Participate in team events and try to connect with each individual – both on a professional and personal level.

  3. 2
     
  4. Find a mentor

    If your new employer hasn’t (yet) developed a mentoring programme, it doesn't hurt to find a contact person who can help you with any questions you might have. Exchange intensively with this person and keep in mind the motto “There’s no such thing as a stupid question”. Benefit from your mentor’s knowledge to quickly become productive. This will make it easier for you to understand the new corporate culture and to get used to how things are handled in this company.

  5. 3
     
  6. Be committed and realistic

    Even if you are super motivated and keen on learning new things at the beginning: Be realistic as to which work packages you can adopt. It is a fallacy to believe that only employees will be accepted who take on the highest workload without knowing if they will be able to finish their work on due time. Be careful at the beginning of the onboarding process and consider carefully if you can process tasks in the given time. So first, plan your time generously and rather surprise your co-workers if you complete a task faster than you expected.

  7. 4
     
  8. Build relationships with your team

    You will probably quickly feel with whom you will and can work more closely. Especially in large companies or corporations, it never hurts to build your own network. Get to know your colleagues better, e.g. during lunch breaks. Show interest, be open-minded and helpful at the same time – this social integration will also help you in your hectic work life.

  9. 5
     
  10. Be ready for change

    Even if you have the best intentions: Avoid being too critical of new systems and workflows in the beginning. New employees often get themselves into hot water if they question or even criticise established processes in the new company during the first few days and weeks. Try not to be overly bold until you have gained comprehensive insights after a few months. Therefore, be tactful and concentrate on finding solutions and developing improvements together.

  11. 6
     
  12. Show initiative and contribute your expertise

    Each team member has strengths and weaknesses. Demonstrate yours and seize the chance to share your knowledge. You could, for instance, invite your new colleagues to an internal meeting in the first few weeks, in which you give a presentation on a subject close to your heart and offer your support in its implementation. This often results in great opportunities to learn new things from your colleagues for potential joint projects and to inspire each other.

  13. 7
     
  14. Demonstrate initiative

    During the onboarding process, it is your manager’s responsibility to introduce you to your new tasks. At the same time, it is your duty to collect the missing information. Ask your colleagues, search for it on the intranet and do your research. If you receive information about outstanding issues, you should take notes and try to remember work instructions. Thus, you will be able to retrieve that information even after months if you are facing a similar situation.

Conclusion: Onboarding offers many opportunities for you to take advantage of

A new professional challenge will help you develop further – both personally and professionally. Make the most of the onboarding phase to find your place in the team and feel comfortable. You can ask anything you want during this time.

Now is the best time to absorb the company’s DNA and identify with the company’s ideals and values. At the same time, onboarding offers you the chance to meet new people, to benefit from their experience and thus to further develop your own skills. However, do not forget to consider for yourself if you like the culture and get along with the team.

Of course, a certain tension or excitement at the beginning is normal. And new, previously unknown conditions may initially feel uncomfortable for most people. Stay positive and committed throughout the entire onboarding process.

In your feedback meetings with your supervisors, you should honestly and openly talk about how you feel. Talking openly helps resolve issues in most cases.

Prepare yourself for the interview

Tips for getting to know each other

A job interview also includes standard questions. We will tell you which answers are well received so you make a self-confident impression.

Complete application documents

What information is required in the application?

Many employers expect applications with comprehensive information about your career path. We will show you what you should pay attention to.

Dare a fresh start

Don't be afraid to change jobs

The job ad appeals to you right away, but you’re procrastinating sending your application? Often it is beliefs that keep you from doing so.

Follow us on social media: