3 Critical Tips to Better Pre-Onboarding

As you hold your breath and say “yes, I accept your offer”. You are excited and also nervous but the new opportunity may provide more financial freedom, career advancement, or maybe you are moving closer to your family. Whatever your reason is, you are making a huge commitment and leap in your life, but then the weight of your decision starts to hit…

Days pass and you don’t hear anything. Your request for information is delayed and non-personable, meanwhile your team is saying their goodbyes and posted your job. The feeling of being missed and also replaced by your previous team while not exactly being welcomed by your new team is a rocky start to your new beginning.

If you think you are feeling a little left in the dark, the employer and your new team may be as well. Bringing on a new team member can be stressful. Not knowing their experience, background, expectations, or the role they will play can add to the already rocky start.

So if this seems like something you want to avoid then let’s make sure you and your leadership team take the proper approach and don’t create this unintentional friction from the start!

Below are my “3 Critical Steps to (Pre) Onboarding”. This comes after reviewing best practices I have applied from listening and learning with plenty of trial and error from senior level leaders, location managers, teams, and the new team members themselves.

#1 -Continue the “SELL”

Think of your company and the job as a product or service the new team member “bought”. Now think of the difference in how you felt buying a product or service that continued to add value after you initially bought it compared to those that left you high and dry…The same can be felt by someone taking a new role.

By continuing to sell yourself, the team, and the company (truthfully) you are gaining trust and confidence in the new team member. This is a great opportunity to strengthen your tie to them before they even start!

Schedule them a call with their immediate team, inform them of recent recognition or awards, and find different ways to show them “Hey we all bought in, we made the right call and you did too!”

#2 – Bring a high level of value from the beginning!

Take this time to find out why they are making the change, what matters to them, and then find out how you can continue to add value in fulfilling their needs.

For now, invite their family to a visit and dinner, aid with getting them settled if it’s a relocation, send a gift package, or share the different employee benefits programs you may offer are all great additions to your pre-boarding process.

#3 – Get ready for the arrival!

Next, pull out the glow sticks and plan a smooth landing on your team. A smoother landing (onboarding and orientation) will ultimately result in a faster takeoff (time to productivity)!

Here are a few key actions you will need to take:

  • Review their job responsibilities and prioritize their on-boarding based on what tasks have the highest return on value for the team’s goals and their progression.
  • Get aligned on WHO will own what part in their training and continued development. You can put it into four different stages: initial delivery of content, hands on application or practice, demonstrating they are competent, AND the most important part…Define how you will validate the task or protocol is being applied to your expectations on a consistent basis.

Our producers with our PigFlow® platform are able to do this by embedding their protocols so the new employee can have easy access, live tracking of completed tasks for all team members, and managers can export the results from how the new team member performed to improve the time to productivity or identify a need for further training.

  • Once you have the game plan, review it with your team and the upcoming new team member for clarity. Include proper check-ins and be ready for any adjustments that may need to be made along the way.

So there you have my “3 Critical Steps to (Pre) Onboarding”. By continuing to sell the decision of joining your team, continually finding ways to add more value, and getting aligned with everyone will set your new team member and their team up for success.

Our strength in the swine industry comes from continually learning, growing, and sharing together so if you would like to share or a way we can help you and your team reach out to me at beller@swinetechnologies.com.

Until next time,


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