New Employee Onboarding Information For Managers

As a manager, you play a pivotal role in your new employee's onboarding experience. Successful onboarding is a collaborative effort that ensures your new employee completes their required onboarding by established due dates and continues to provide learning and performance support throughout their first year. You play an essential role in helping them feel welcome prepared, engaged, and valued. Effective onboarding has been proven to increase employee retention, promote engagement, shorten time to be productive, and improve overall satisfaction. 

The information on this webpage provides you with resources to support your new employee's onboarding experience. If you have questions or suggestions, submit an inquiry via WorkLion.

1. Welcome Email

Upon completion of the hire business process, your new employee receives an automated email to their personal email. The hiring manager, HR Consultant, and Manager Recruiting Support (MRS) roles are copied on this email for all full-time hires.

2. Welcome Video & Letter from the President

3. Workday Onboarding Dashboard

The dashboard outlines the steps all new employees must take to complete onboarding. The information provided is tailored based on their status as full- or part-time. For reference, a New Employee Onboarding Roadmap/Checklist is included in your new hires' welcome email and their onboarding dashboard. It is your responsibility as their manager to ensure that all the steps below are complete:

  1. Schedule I-9 Document Verification Session
    - During this meeting, your new employee will complete Section 2 of their Form I-9, which must be completed no later than their third day of work. 
  2. Complete Electronic Onboarding Tasks
    - The "Getting Started" worklet on the dashboard allows your new hire to track progress as they complete their new hire tasks. Note that required compliance training is not included in this step.
  3. Complete Training Requirements
    - From this step, your new employee accesses the Learning Resource Network (LRN) to launch and complete required compliance training that is automatically assigned, based on their role.
    - New employees in a manager role are also assigned the "Leadership Essentials" self-paced eModule in their 'suggested' training carousel in the LRN.
  4. Prepare to Elect Benefits
    - Benefits-eligible employees are urged to watch the New Employee Benefits Orientation self-pace, eModule in preparation to make their benefits selections in Workday, no sooner than their first day of work but no later than 31 days from their first day of work.
  5. Take the Next Step
    - New employees are encouraged to continue their onboarding journey by visiting the New Employee webpages to learn more about the University, their college, unit, or campus location, and other important resources. A short video tutorial on how to navigate and get the most out of these webpages is provided. 

4. Manager Notifications

Managers receive the below important notifications via your Penn State Outlook email and Workday notifications.

Manager Resources Email (Sent the day after you are copied on the Welcome email sent to the employee) - Notifies you of onboarding tools and resources to get a window into your new hire’s Onboarding Experience and ensure start date readiness.

Cleared to Start (Sent the morning after new hire completes their I-9) - Notifies you when HR has a completed I-9 on file for your new employee.

Not Cleared to Start (Sent 3 days prior to new employee’s start date) - Notifies you if HR does not have a completed I-9 for your new employee.

Outstanding Onboarding Tasks - Employee (Sent 7 days after their start date) - Notifies your new employee if they have outstanding/incomplete onboarding tasks/forms in Workday.

Outstanding Onboarding Tasks – Manager (Sent 14 days after their start date) - Notifies you when your new hire has outstanding/incomplete onboarding tasks/forms in Workday.

5. Unit, College, or Campus Onboarding

Following completion of the University-wide onboarding activity, your new hire will participate in any program delivered by your unit, college, or campus. Please contact your HR Strategic Partner (HRSP) or HR Consultant (HRC) to learn more about programs in your area.

Additional Manager Resources


Onboarding Checklist for Managers

Onboarding is more than just compliance, its clarification, culture, connections, and checkbacks that should carry through an employee's first year. We encourage you to use this Onboarding Checklist to create a custom onboarding experience relevant to your new hire.

Two people talking at a desk

Entrance Interview

Extend the conversation you started during the interview process and take time to discuss how your new employee might apply their prior experience to their new job. Make connections with past work and current role, as well as ask for feedback on ways we could improve the new employee onboarding process.

People at Work

Identify & assign a “Buddy”

Connect your new employee with a person they can shadow or use as a resource during their first days with the team. This is an opportunity to build relationships, and understand the team and University culture. This “buddy” should be an experienced employee that is not in a position of authority or power over the new employee. The LRN provides a great video on Ensuring Onboarding Success.


Retention Interview

Retention Interviews should be conducted within the first couple of months of a new employee's start and again at their first-year anniversary. It's a great way to build trust, engage, and ensure they feel valued, understood, and heard. And it helps increase employee/manager satisfaction resulting in higher retention rates. SHRM provides an excellent resource for interview questions


Talent Management - Manager Dashboard in Workday

Monitor your new employee’s progress toward completion of their I-9, required tasks, and compliance training by accessing the Talent Management Dashboard in Workday. To learn more about the dashboard’s functionality review the WorkLion Knowledge Base article that outlines the information.

Laptop with holographic program icons on screen

Onboarding eModule for Managers

The Leadership Essentials eModule contains foundational information on core processes and policies at Penn State. All managers are highly encouraged to participate in the entire series. Within this curriculum, the Onboarding: Welcoming Your New Employee course provides an overview of the onboarding process and allows you to understand the onboarding process from the perspective of the new hire. 

Writing on a notepad

Set Goals

The performance review process is an opportunity for employees to partner with their managers to establish goals that align with unit or team objectives and support the development of the individual as well as the success of the organization. As a manager, you receive a notification in Workday to set content for your new hire. Work with your new employee to establish goals for the performance review process that support their onboarding experience. 


New to You - Transfers

A new employee coming to you from another unit, college, or campus at Penn State does not go through the New Employee Onboarding dashboard in Workday. You will need to arrange their unit and department-specific onboarding activities and use the checklist and best practices resources to guide their onboarding through their first year.