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The Pre-Boarding Period And Why It Pays Off To Engage New Hires Early

Finding great candidates can be difficult, but retaining new hires is even more challenging [1]. Neglecting to facilitate communication or to engage your staff can cost you great talent. While the onboarding process can help instil employee confidence and a team mindset, pre-boarding is an effective strategy to start a strong relationship before your employee’s first day. In this blog article we explore the pre-boarding period and why is considered a crucial component of the employee experience process.

Pre-Boarding vs Onboarding

While pre-boarding falls under the onboarding umbrella, the pre-boarding process includes engaging with your candidate before they officially begin their first day on the job. Onboarding, however, continues after the employee’s first day.

Pre-boarding and onboarding essentially share the same purpose, however pre-boarding is often overlooked. By maximising the time between your employee’s acceptance and their first day, you can motivate the employee, help them get acclimated to their new role, and keep them engaged.

A poor onboarding experience can send an employee running for the hills, with up to 4% of new hires leaving a job on just the first day [2]. On the other hand, an extensive onboarding program can set an employee up for success. Starting the onboarding process before the employee’s first day can help ramp up the transition process and get your employees up to speed and comfortable in their new roles in record time.

Why Pre-boarding is Crucial

Starting a new role is often intimidating and can be a life-altering decision for candidates. The period between leaving a role and beginning a new one is typically a short one, but is arguably the most critical, with candidates often weighing up different offers. It can be common for new hires to experience doubt or second thoughts about the next decisions in their career in this stage. In fact, up to 45 percent of new hires leave after only six months. [3]

Pre-boarding not only starts the employee relationship on a positive note, but it also gives the employer an opportunity to communicate company values and accelerate employee performance by empowering candidates. When an organization provides a structured pre-boarding program, employee productivity improves by up to 70%. [4]

How to start the Pre-Boarding Process

The pre-boarding process doesn’t have to be elaborate or complicated. Taking a few measures to make new hires feel welcome or to invite communication can go a long way, such as sending a welcome message or providing a point of contact to answer frequently asked questions before the start date. Additionally, the pre-boarding process is the opportune moment to provide important documents like employee handbooks or HR documents. Software can digitize the process and create a digital hub for communication between parties.

Final Thoughts

Your employee’s journey starts before they sign an official contract, and pre-boarding is a powerful tool to begin building trust and retain talent. With the increase of remote working as a result of modern events, HR professionals now have to fight to keep employees engaged that they may never physically meet, removing the personal element of bringing people onboard. To combat this, check out one of our previous blogs on how to effectively manage remote teams.


As a cloud-hosted native mobile app, Qualee was specifically designed to allow pre-boarding and the engagement of new hires from the moment they sign an offer letter. If you would like to learn more about how Qualee can help your organisation with the pre-boarding process, visit our website www.qualee.com and download Qualee for free today!


[1] https://www.cipd.co.uk/Images/workplace-technology-1_tcm18-80853.pdf

[2] https://business.linkedin.com/content/dam/business/talent-solutions/global/en_us/c/pdfs/onboarding-in-a-box-v03-06.pdf

[3] https://www.pwc.com/us/en/services/hr-management/library/rethinking-hr-for-the-future-of-work.html

[4] https://b2b-assets.glassdoor.com/the-true-cost-of-a-bad-hire.pdf

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Qualee is a leading cloud-based employee onboarding and engagement platform. We make it simple for companies to create exciting employee experiences that will empower your talent to be their very best. Every day.

The Qualee console has everything you need to create customised journeys, manage content and interact with your staff, who engage via an intuitive mobile app available on iOS and Android.

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