Last year, our 82 questions your new hires wish you’d answer went down a storm. So here's the partner piece – 82 questions for you to ask new hires during onboarding.
Because onboarding doesn’t happen in a vacuum. It’s not a lecture; it’s a conversation.
Asking the right questions during onboarding gathers vital feedback, so you can make tweaks for the next new hire. It helps you understand how else you can empower new hires’ performance and cultural integration. And it surfaces any issues before they become engagement drains and turnover risk factors.
So, without further ado...
(OK, OK, you don’t have to ask all 82 questions. But this shows the scope of what you could ask, and the areas you should cover. Tweak to fit.)
Now is the best time to ask new hires questions about your recruitment process, while it’s still fresh in their mind. Their feedback helps you build a best-in-class candidate experience.
Enable anonymity for more honest, constructive criticism. And ask open-ended questions, so you’re not (mis)leading answers.
Plus they can help you understand what you’re doing right – and perhaps, wrong – with your employer brand. So you can double-down on your strengths and improve any focus areas.
Pre-start is also the best time to ask questions about new hires’ hopes and expectations for the coming months. You could then use that insight to personalise the onboarding experience. Or at the least, to sensitively manage their expectations if they’re unrealistic.
Last year, we wrote our hugely popular piece on the
You don’t want to overload new hires with questions here, but asking how things went shows you care. And helps spot any weak points in your onboarding process so you can quickly take action.
Ask questions like:
That last question is an excellent way to make sure you haven’t left your new hires hanging. Especially with questions they might be embarrassed to come right out and ask. Like… how holiday works, what happens if they get sick, or when they get paid, for example.
And if you’re using Talmundo to streamline your onboarding journey, our AI assistant can automatically direct them to the answer or escalate to someone who can help. So you nip unanswered questions in the bud.
After their first week, your new hires will have formed a solid first impression of your business. A first impression that’ll be difficult to budge if it’s not a good one (that’s why you’ve been asking all these questions during onboarding so far, to help make the experience positive).
So now’s a great time to dig into those first impressions. New hires can hold a mirror up to your business, so you can see your strengths and weaknesses with unusual clarity.
Now is also a good time to check you’ve delivered all the organizational stuff your new hires need to succeed (that’s the
Or instead of asking open-ended questions here, you could format questions as a speedy checklist. Like:
- An organizational hierarchy
- Important contact details
- Crucial equipment
- Systems log-ins and passwords
- Bookmarks for important online info
- Our company policies
That’s most relevant if you’re trying to manage all the moving parts involved in onboarding without an onboarding tool. If you’re using onboarding software, you can set workflows to automatically deliver all that stuff, so you are certain that new hires have what they need and when.
After a new hires’ first week is also a great time to check their initial training has been on point. With questions like:
By now your new hires have started to settle down, integrate into the business and dig into their workload. So ask questions to check they’ve got everything they need to be maximally productive and engaged.
First, the social prong of onboarding. This aspect of onboarding is where you help new hires integrate into the business, build their cross-department network, make friends and start to feel they belong.
It’s crucial to employees’ long-term happiness and success. During this phase of onboarding, ask questions like:
Then the functional prong of onboarding – the absolutely crucial part where you empower new hires to add maximum value in their function.
Ask questions that seek feedback into your onboarding processes, plus questions that highlight possible training and skills gaps and check you’re doing enough on the career development front.
Then ask questions geared towards understanding their on-the-job performance. To spot any early performance management issues, manager-employee fit issues or additional support needs.
First quarter performance sets the tone for new hires’ whole career at your business so it’s crucial you get this right.
During this stage of onboarding you could also ask questions that check new hires feel connected to purpose: a crucial marker of their long-term engagement.
Around now, onboarding is coming to an end. Which means it’s an ideal time to get new hires’ (or not so new hires’, now) feedback on your onboarding program.
Plus, you want employees’ feedback on their experiences during their first three months. Ask new hires questions like this to help surface performance issues, training gaps or engagement risk factors. So you can make changes before productivity and retention suffer.
And you could ask questions that help you better understand the anatomy of your workforce. You could even give recognition and rewards, if that ties into your culture.
At the three-month mark, new hires should have a robust understanding of the role and your culture – one that goes beyond first impressions. So now’s a great time to check cultureboarding has gone well. (Read more:
Plus new hires’ unique perspective can fuel your marketing efforts. You never know who’ll come out with a gem about your business.
And finally, if you’ve done everything right your new hires should be well on their way to becoming brand evangelists. Capitalise by asking for referrals and testimonials (testimonials which you could then ask them to post straight to review sites like Glassdoor – fantastic for your employer brand).
And WOO! You’ve done it. Successfully nurtured your newest hire through your onboarding program and they’re fast becoming an integrated, effective and hyper-engaged employee.
Just don’t stop there.
Employee development shouldn’t fall off a cliff, but slope gently into your usual development processes. You should keep asking questions – not only during onboarding but at every checkpoint beyond.