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53 Best Onboarding Questions for New Hires

53 Best Onboarding Questions for New Hires


Leah Nguyen 09 Nov 2023 6 min read

Landing the dream job is exciting…but those early days can be nerve-wracking!

While new hires settle into their inbox, adjusting socially and settling into work can feel like learning to ride a bike with no training wheels.

That’s why it’s crucial to make onboarding a supportive experience. Moreover, effective onboarding can boost the new hires’ productivity by over 70%!

In this post, we’ll uncover powerful onboarding questions stretching 90 days sure to help newbies hit the ground sprinting.

Onboarding questions
Onboarding questions

Table of Contents

Onboarding Questions for New Hires

From gauging engagement boosters to tailoring training – thoughtful onboarding questions at key stages assist new recruits to find their stride.

After The FirstDay

The new hire’s first day can leave a lasting impression on their journey with your company later on, some even consider it a critical day to decide whether they’re staying or not.

It’s crucial to make new employees feel comfortable and integrate with their team seamlessly. These onboarding questions on their first-day experience will help you know if they’re having a good time.

Onboarding questions
Onboarding questions
  1. Now that you’ve had a full weekend to settle into your new gig, how’s it feeling so far? Any sudden love/hate relationships with coworkers forming yet?
  2. What projects are your cup of tea so far? Are you getting to flex those unique skills we hired you for?
  3. Had a chance to meet people in other departments yet?
  4. How’s the training been – super helpful or could we chuck a few things and loop you in faster?
  5. Feeling like you’ve got a handle on our vibe or still perplexed by weird inside jokes?
  6. Any burning questions still lingering since this exciting first morning?
  7. Anything preventing you from being as productive as your hyper-inner overachiever demands?
  8. Have we provided you with enough resources to work on on the first day?
  9. Overall, looking back at your first day – best parts, worst parts, how can we twist those knobs to amp your awesomeness even higher?

💡 Pro tip: Incorporate interactive activities/icebreakers to help new hires bond with colleagues

Here’s how to make it:

  • Step #1: Decide an icebreaker game that doesn’t take much time, is easy to set up, and invokes discussions. Here we recommend ‘Desert Island’, a fun game where each member of the team has to pitch which item they would bring to a desert island.
  • Step #2: Create a brainstorming slide with your question at AhaSlides.
  • Step #3: Present your slide and let everyone access it through their devices by scanning the QR code or typing the access code on AhaSlides. They can submit their answer, and vote for the answers they like. The answers can range from dead serious to dead offbeat💀
play AhaSlides desert island icebreaker game for better employee onboarding experience
Desert Island is a great icebreaker game for elevated discussion

After The First Week

Your new hire has made it to one week, and by this time they pretty much have a basic grasp of how things work. Now it’s the time to dive deeper into exploring their experience and perspective with their coworkers, themselves and the company first-hand.

Onboarding questions
Onboarding questions
  1. How did your first full week go? What were some of the highlights?
  2. What projects have you been working on? Are you finding the work engaging and challenging?
  3. Have you had any “aha” moments yet about how your work contributes to our goals?
  4. What relationships have you started developing with colleagues? How well-integrated do you feel?
  5. How effective was the initial training? What additional training would you like?
  6. What questions come up most frequently as you’re getting acclimated?
  7. What skills or knowledge do you still feel you need to develop?
  8. Do you understand our processes and where to go for different resources?
  9. Is there anything preventing you from being as productive as you want? How can we help?
  10. On a scale of 1-5, how would you rate your onboarding experience so far? What’s working well and what could be improved?
  11. How comfortable do you feel approaching your manager/others with questions so far?

💡 Tip: Give a small welcome gift for completing their first week successfully.

Get your new hires engaged during onboarding.

Make the onboarding process 2x times better with quizzes, polls, and all the fun stuff on AhaSlides’ interactive presentation.

Meeting with a remote presenter answering questions with a live Q&A on AhaSlides

After The First Month

People settle into new roles at different paces. By their one-month mark, gaps may emerge in skills, relationships or role comprehension that weren’t obvious earlier.

Asking questions after 30 days allows you to see if employees need increased, decreased or different types of support as their understanding grows. Here are some onboarding questions to consider:

Onboarding questions
Onboarding questions
  1. So, it’s been a whole month – feeling settled in yet or still getting your bearings?
  2. Any projects really rocking your world this past month? Or tasks you’re dying to ditch?
  3. Who have you bonded with most – the chattiest cubicle neighbour or the coffee room crew?
  4. Think you’ve got a solid grasp on how your work plays out for the team/company yet?
  5. What new skills have you levelled up thanks to (training name)? Still more to learn?
  6. Feeling like a pro yet or do you still Google basic things during meetings?
  7. Work-life balance been as blissful as hoped or is someone stealing your lunch again?
  8. What was your favourite “aha!” moment when something finally clicked?
  9. Any questions still stumping you or are you an expert now?
  10. On a scale of 1 to “this is the best!”, rate your onboarding happiness level so far
  11. Need any other coaching or is your awesomeness fully self-sustaining now?

After Three Months

The 90-day mark is often cited as the cutoff for new employees to feel settled into their roles. At 3 months, employees can better assess the actual value of onboarding efforts from hiring through the present day.

Questions posed at this moment help identify any lingering learning needs as employees fully assume responsibilities, for example:

Onboarding questions
Onboarding questions
  1. At this point, how comfortable and confident do you feel in your role and responsibilities?
  2. What projects or initiatives have you led or contributed to significantly in the last few months?
  3. How well integrated into the team/company culture do you feel now?
  4. What relationships have proven most valuable, both professionally and personally?
  5. Looking back, what were your biggest challenges in the first 3 months? How did you overcome them?
  6. Thinking about your goals during onboarding, how successful have you been in achieving them?
  7. What skills or areas of expertise have you focused on expanding in the past month?
  8. How effective is the support and guidance you receive on an ongoing basis?
  9. What is your overall job satisfaction at this stage of onboarding?
  10. Do you have the resources and information you need to be successful long-term?
  11. What should we keep doing to support new employees joining after you? What could be improved?

Fun Onboarding Questions for New Hires

A more casual, friendly environment created via fun onboarding questions helps alleviate the potential anxiety of starting a new role.

Learning small facts about the new hires also helps you connect with them on a deeper level, thus making them feel more involved and invested in the company.

Fun onboarding questions for new hires | AhaSlides
Onboarding questions
  1. If we threw an epic team bonding bonfire bash, what would you bring to contribute to the snacks?
  2. Coffee or tea? If coffee, how do you take it?
  3. Once a month we excuse an hour of productivity for shenanigans – your dream office competition ideas?
  4. If your job was a movie genre, what would it be – thriller, rom-com, horror flick?
  5. What’s your favourite way to procrastinate when you should be working?
  6. Pretend you’re a Seinfeld character – who are you and what’s your deal?
  7. Every Friday we dress up based on a theme – your dream theme week suggestion is?
  8. You’re hosting happy hour – what’s the playlist banger that gets everyone singing and dancing?
  9. Excuse to slack off for 10 mins starts in 3, 2, 1… what’s your go-to distraction activity?
  10. Do you have any weird talents or party tricks?
  11. What’s the last book you read just for fun?

More Tips with AhaSlides

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Bottom Line

Onboarding is about so much more than just conveying job duties and policies. It’s a critical first step in cultivating long-term engagement and success for new hires.

Taking the time to periodically ask both practical and fun onboarding questions throughout the process helps ensure employees settle in smoothly at each stage.

It maintains an open line of communication to address any challenges promptly. Most importantly, it shows new team members that their comfort, growth and unique perspectives matter.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the 5 C’s of effective onboarding?

The 5’C to an effective onboarding are Compliance, Culture, Connection, Clarification and Confidence.

What are the 4 phases of onboarding?

There are 4 phases of onboarding: pre-boarding, orientation, training, and transition to the new role.

What do you discuss during onboarding?

Some of the key things that are typically discussed during the onboarding process are company history and culture, job roles and responsibilities, paperwork, onboarding schedule, and organisational structure.