The Importance of New Hire Orientation: Tips for Success and Making it Fun

July 14, 2023

3-min read

Paris Stevens

"A strong onboarding process can improve new hire retention by 82% and productivity by over 70% (source: Glassdoor)"

Starting a new job can be overwhelming for anyone. New hires may feel anxious, confused, and uncertain about what to expect from their new role and company. This is where a well-designed new hire orientation comes in. New hire orientation is an essential process that introduces new employees to the organization, its culture, expectations, and policies. In this blog post, we will discuss the benefits of new hire orientation, the difference between onboarding and orientation, tips for creating a successful orientation program, and ways to make it fun and exciting.

Benefits of New Hire Orientation

One of the primary benefits of new hire orientation is that it reduces anxiety. A well-organized and informative orientation program helps new employees feel welcomed, valued, and part of the team. It also clarifies expectations, such as job responsibilities, company culture, and policies, helping new hires understand what is expected of them in their new role and how to perform it successfully.

A successful orientation program also sets the stage for success. Orientation provides new employees with the tools and resources they need to perform their job duties efficiently and effectively. It also helps them form connections with their colleagues, creating a sense of belonging and accountability. In turn, these efforts lead to higher job satisfaction, retention rates, and productivity.

Onboarding vs. Orientation

Many people use the terms onboarding and orientation interchangeably, but they are not the same things. Orientation is a one-time event that welcomes new employees and introduces them to the company, while onboarding is an ongoing process that helps new employees adjust to their new role and company. Both are crucial components of a successful new hire process, and organizations that invest time and resources in both will likely reap the benefits of a more engaged, productive, and loyal workforce.

Tips for a Successful Orientation

Creating a successful orientation program takes time and effort, but it's well worth it. Here are some tips to help you get started:

  • Choose the right day: Schedule orientation on the employee's first day, and make sure all technology and access credentials are set up in advance.
  • Share the agenda in advance: Let the employees know what to expect so they can come prepared and know what they will learn.
  • Schedule one-on-one time: The new employee needs to be given one-one time with their supervisor.
  • Automate paperwork: Most companies have paperwork that needs to be completed such as employee handbooks, policies, tax forms, direct deposit, etc.
  • Provide an employee welcome packet: Include company swag, company culture information, and employee resources in the welcome package.
  • Introduce managers: New hires should meet their team members and managers personally.
  • Be mindful of information overload: Be careful not to overwhelm new employees with too much information during orientation. Break it up into manageable pieces.
  • Engage employees: Orientation is an excellent opportunity to engage new employees and encourage their participation in the organization. Design interactive activities and group discussions to make orientation more engaging.
  • Give an office tour: Show the new employee around the office and the building, so they feel familiar in their new work environment.
  • Continuously improve orientation process: Solicit feedback and make improvements to the orientation process based on employee feedback.

Making Orientation Fun and Exciting

Orientation can be fun and exciting with the right approach. The more enjoyable you make the process, the more effective it will be. Here are some ways to make it enjoyable:

  • Keep it short and sweet: Break it up into small segments.
  • Add gamification: Incorporating games and competition into the orientation program can make it fun and encourage participation.
  • Design a scavenger hunt: Create a scavenger hunt that guides new hires through the company's culture, history, departments, and policies.
  • Schedule lunch or happy hour: Have lunch/after-work drinks with the team to help new hires get to know their colleagues.

Measuring the Success of Orientation

It's essential to measure the success of your new hire orientation. You can measure the orientation's success by utilizing surveys to gather employee feedback about the orientation process. The feedback will give you an idea of where you could improve and enhance the orientation at your organization. Use this feedback to continuously improve and evolve the orientation process to better meet your new hire's needs.


In conclusion, investing in a successful new hire orientation is essential to employee retention, productivity, and job satisfaction. It is the beginning of a new employee's journey within a company. Ensuring that the orientation process is well-designed, informative, and engaging can lead to more successful experiences for both the organization and new employees. Remember, new hires that feel welcomed, informed, and supported will be more likely to enjoy their job and become productive members of your team.

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