New Hire Onboarding Feedback Survey: 39 Questions + Best Practices
It's no secret that employee onboarding can make or break employee experience early on.
It is the opportunity for employers to win the hearts of new employees and the point at which new employees decide whether to stay engaged or become disengaged.
Businesses invest a significant amount of time and money in employee onboarding, so you want to make sure these investments pay off. But how can you measure the success of your onboarding program?
The answer? Collecting feedback with an onboarding survey.
The onboarding survey is not only a significant part of the hiring process but is also crucial in getting to know new hires, their expectations, and their level of satisfaction.
It helps align them with the company's morals to encourage company engagement and potentially increase employee retention.
This article will discuss what an onboarding survey is and why it's important.
You will also learn when to collect feedback, what questions to include, and best practices for implementing your onboarding survey right.
🗳️ What's an Onboarding Survey?
An onboarding survey is a survey or questionnaire given to a company's new hires after completing (or during) the onboarding process.
It helps you determine
- if the new hire was satisfied with the onboarding process
- if they internalized the company's vision, mission, and culture
- if the materials, equipment, or systems being used are available and clear
- if they understood the goals and accountabilities of each person on the team
...and above all: How to improve all these things
❓ Why Send New Hires a Survey?
Starting a new job is overwhelming.
In their first weeks, new employees are entering a completely new environment. Not knowing anybody. Not understanding all the established processes. And often lacking the proper structure to get them there quickly.
The quality of your onboarding process will determine
- How welcome new hires feel
- How fast they will get productive
- How long they will stay in the company
- How well they create relationships with colleagues
But how to understand how well your process performs?
Feedback surveys are your data-driven approach to doing just that - and your baseline for identifying areas of improvement and creating an onboarding experience people will love.
The new hire may have a number of unanswered questions, doubts, and confusion that must be addressed. The new hire survey enables employees to assess their level of integration into the company culture and identify areas for improvement.
- Marc Stitt, Chief Marketing Officer (CMO) at FMX
📚 What should be included in an onboarding survey?
It depends on the structure of your current process and your goals. But here are a few categories to start with:
- Questions about the recruitment process. Was the information your new received during recruitment accurate? How was the candidate experience?
- Questions about the employer brand. Why did the person join our company? What was the perceived value?
- Questions relating to the onboarding experience. How did the new hire feel about their onboarding process? Do they feel welcome? What did they like?
- Questions about role-related onboarding. How confident is the new hire with the company's software, tools, or systems? Did they get sufficient training?
- Alignment questions. How well are both parties' expectations aligned? Are they on the same page regarding vision, values, and goals?
- Questions about role clarity. Did the employee understand everyone's role in the team - and how they fit in?
- 90-day to 6th-month questions. How well are new hires settling in? What does work-life balance look like?
What questions to include in the onboarding survey depend on what you are trying to learn from the employee.
A good place to start are also the 4C's of onboarding by Dr. Talya Bauer from the SHRM Foundation:
Or ask yourself what you wish you'd have been asked when you started your job.
Onboarding surveys aren't a one-time thing.
Instead, you should make them a fixed component of your 30-60-90 day onboarding plan to collect feedback along the whole timeline.
⏱ When to Send Out Your Onboarding Questionnaires?
Knowing when to send out different surveys is crucial as it is only effective if done at the appropriate time.
Asking specific questions too early may be ineffective, while asking them too late means you might not be able to help when problems arise.
Goal: Understand how well your new hire was welcomed and if they have any urgent questions.
- Recruitment process (optional)
- Employer brand and decision for the company
- Preboarding experience
- First-week experience
- Open questions
Goal: Zooming in on role clarity and relationships with team members
- Tools and logins
- Role expectations
Goal: Understand productivity hurdles and the overall process
- Overall onboarding process, structure, guidance
- What did they like most
- What did they miss
90-Days and 6 Months
After 3-6 months, the employee should understand what it is like to work for the company. Follow-up questions about the employee's performance will help determine their work ethic and standing.
🙋 39 Onboarding Survey Questions
We typically recommend a mix of open questions and quantitative ones via a 5-answer Likert scale or 1-10 scale.
Quantitative questions are helpful to measure your progress before and after improving the experience.
Qualitative questions help you identify specific issues and give people room for more differentiated answers.
The type of the question can be changed or rephrased (i.e., changing open questions to scaled questions).
Keep in mind: Your surveys should be short, with a maximum number of 10 relevant questions at a time.
Based on the types of onboarding surveys and their timelines previously mentioned, below are some questions you could use:
- Would you recommend [company name] to other friends to apply? Why?
- Were you provided with sufficient information about the company during the recruitment period?
- How do you think the recruitment process could be improved?
Questions About Employer Brand
- What are your three reasons for joining this organization?
- What are the best 3 things about being [company name] 's employee
Onboarding Experience Questions
- Do you feel welcome in the organization so far?
- Do you feel happy being associated with the company?
- Does the team motivate you to deliver and go beyond what is expected?
- Do you feel productive working with this company?
- Were the goals of the onboarding made clear to you?
- What do you like the most about our onboarding process?
- What did you like least about the onboarding process?
- What could we change or add to improve our onboarding process?
- Do you feel the job descriptions and responsibilities explained at the beginning are accurate to your work experience?
- Were you given an overview of your career path and progress in the company?
Questions About Role and Performance
- Since you have joined the organization, do you still think about looking for other employment options?
- Do you see yourself staying with this company for 5 years?
- Do you feel confident in using the company's software, tools, and systems?
- Do you feel the materials and equipment provided are adequate for you to perform your job effectively?
- Have you been given enough training to perform the job well?
- Do you understand what is expected of you?
- Are you able to perform what is expected of you with your current skill set?
- Do you understand the benefits and policies within the organization?
Questions About Role Perceptions
- Do you regularly receive feedback from the manager regarding your tasks?
- Do you feel comfortable reaching out to coworkers when needed?
- Do the people around you help you achieve success with your job?
- Are you comfortable expressing work-related concerns?
Feedback from the Onboarding Experience
- How likely would you recommend our company to your friends or family (on a scale of 1-10)?
90-Day to 6th Month Questions
- Are you able to achieve work-life balance well?
- Do you feel accepted by everyone on your team?
- Do you feel that you can depend on other members of your team?
- Has communication with necessary personnel been effective in getting the job done?
- Does your immediate manager care about your development?
- Does your direct manager care about you as a person?
- Have your experiences so far matched your expectations?
- Are the goals and accountabilities clear for everyone on the team?
- Are members of the team dependable?
- Do you understand how your performance is measured?
- Do you understand the organization's plan for the future?
- Do you believe in the organization's future success?
📝 An Onboarding Survey Template You Can Use
To make things easier for you, we've developed an onboarding survey template you can use right away or customize to your needs.
➡️ Get the free template here
📈 6 Best Practices for Your Onboarding Survey
Answering these surveys shouldn't feel like a chore for the employees. All employees, especially new hires, have a lot going on with their jobs, so it's vital to make participation as easy as possible.
These tips will help you do so:
- Keep the surveys short and simple. Nobody likes a long survey. Stick to a maximum of 10 relevant questions with options for answers to make them close-ended. If you ask open-ended questions, keep it to a maximum of 3. You don't want it to look like an essay.
- Communicate the purpose. The main goal of asking these questions is to improve the process. Explain how the results will be used so that the employees understand their voices will be heard.
- Be direct. Direct questions will save you time and get to the point. If you tell respondents that their statements are anonymous, they will answer more honestly.
- Ask only relevant questions. Not all questions will apply to all positions. So customize accordingly to ensure the survey is relevant to the employee. Since you will be limited to a small number of questions, it's best to filter out generic, unnecessary ones.
- Opt for the online option. Online surveys make distribution and answering questions easier and more streamlined. You'll be able to gather and review results faster than manually printed surveys. There is online and automated software available for you to use. Online surveys can also encourage more engagement and better responses because of their efficiency and accessibility.
- Follow up. Whenever people voice concerns or issues, make sure to address these and solve them. This will, in some cases, be easier if there is a non-anonymous survey in your mix, as well.
⚙️ Automatically Collect Feedback Throughout Everyone's Onboarding
Collecting feedback throughout everyone's first 1,2,5,30 weeks?
Following up with them?
Sending these out via Slack or Teams?
These things take time.
That's where our automated workflows come in.
With Zavvy, you can create detailed onboarding journeys with just a few clicks - and automate all the timely send-outs for days, weeks, or months.
This way, your people will not only automatically have a fantastic onboarding experience (the average rating is around 9.5 out of 10) - but you will also be able to invest your valuable time in getting to know your colleagues and improving the process strategically.
➡️ Learn how to take your onboarding experience to the next level with our onboarding software here.