Onboarding Isn't Orientation Anymore - Here's Why

15 January, 2020
Onboarding Isn't Orientation Anymore - Here's Why

Orientation and onboarding are often considered one and the same, as they both happen after an employee is hired. Both orientation and onboarding involve paperwork, meeting new people and learning about company practices.  

While they might seem like interchangeable terms, orientation is actually just a small part of onboarding. Recently, there has been an increased interest in onboarding as a means to reduce turnover and ensure that a ‘good hire’ takes place. 

Below is a short breakdown of the difference between orientation and onboarding. 



Only one part of onboarding, orientation covers the basic details that new hires have to know in order to get up and running, like attendance policies, benefits, where to eat lunch and the names of the people they'll be working with. During orientation, new employees are officially shown a company's mission, objective, and values.  

Orientation tends to last just a few workdays and its ostensibly how a company welcomes in a new employee. It is done during the first few days a new employee is on the job. While many companies hold in-person sessions for new staff members, often from different departments, more employers are transitioning to an online rendition of an orientation program, which often lets new employees to look over orientation materials from home prior to their first day. Some businesses provide online orientation ahead of an in-person session so new staff members walk in with a basic understanding of the business and its people. 



A strong onboarding program starts when an open position has been posted and concludes when the new hire is established as a fully competent worker, which typically lasts many months. Onboarding is ongoing, and only a small part of that is orientation. Through formal instruction and hands-on learning, onboarding helps new staff members see how they can flourish in their new job. It should fortify everything the new hire has learned about the company since reading the job posting and motivate them to become the best employee they can be. Onboarding should also make a new employee feel like he or she made the right decision to accept a job offer from your business. From the employer's point of view, onboarding should ensure a great hire becomes a great employee. 

Many companies take a proactive approach to onboarding. During the orientation part of onboarding, new employees are introduced to their colleagues, co-workers, supervisors and various other staff. After that, they attend meetings and start collaborating with co-workers, learning the company’s methods, culture, and objectives in the process.  

Managers must regularly check in with new employees throughout the process. Checking in can help support the cultivation of new relationships and make sure the new hires are getting up to speed. 

We Can Provide Onboarding Assistance 


At Quanta, our job doesn’t end after a client agrees to hire one of our candidates. We follow up with onboarding support designed to ensure a successful hire. Please contact us today to find out how we can support your onboarding program.  

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