What is Pre-Boarding in HR?

Pre-boarding is an extension of the onboarding process that serves to make a new hire feel welcomed by the organization before their first day on the job. This can include small touch points such as welcome emails, what to expect from the onboarding process, and even simple info such as where to park.


Our pre-boarding process has been a huge success – new hires arrive on the first day ready to go and without feeling like complete strangers!

Frequently Asked Questions

  • What’s the difference between Pre-Boarding and Onboarding? While Onboarding describes everything that goes into helping a new hire get legally and professionally integrated into a new job starting from their very first day, Pre-Boarding is a term used to describe the types of communication, information, and support that goes into preparing a new hire for that first day on the job and the rest of the Onboarding process. Think of Pre-Boarding as everything that happens between the job offer being accepted and the very first day at work, while Onboarding is everything that happens after!
  • Is Pre-Boarding in the hiring process legal? Pre-boarding a new hire is perfectly legal in the United States. Most Pre-Boarding is basic communication such as congratulations emails, connecting on LinkedIn, giving directions to the office, and sharing information like employee handbooks or benefits packages. Some organizations will take Pre-Boarding a step further and give new hires the opportunity to begin filling out intake paperwork, going through orientation modules, and more. If these tasks are offered as voluntary (rather than mandatory) options or are not expected to take any significant amount of time, then the employer should not run afoul of any legal concerns. However, if these tasks take more than a few minutes and the employee is required to complete them ahead of their official start date, then the employer should consider factoring this time worked into a new hire’s first paycheck.
  • What are the benefits of Pre-Boarding employees? Pre-Boarding communication such as offering a new hire your congratulations, encouraging other team members to share their excitement, and giving a new hire detailed info on what to expect on their first day can go a long way towards making your newest employee feel welcome, comfortable.Additionally, Pre-Boarding can make the Onboarding process move more quickly and more efficiently – having a new hire complete employment verification forms, pick their health plan, and even start orientation modules can make the first day move that much more smoothly, with the new hire being able to more effectively jump straight into their work team rather than having to spend all day on paperwork and administrative tasks.
  • What makes for effective Pre-Boarding? Pre-Boarding is one of the most effective tools you can add into your hiring process, as it has many benefits for relatively little cost – so truthfully, any Pre-Boarding elements you can add in will help your hiring process become even stronger. Even something as simple as a congratulations email or phone call after a job candidate has accepted an offer can go a huge distance in making them feel excited, welcome, and ready to get to work at the cost of nothing more than a few minutes of work on your end. And the more you can expand your Pre-Boarding to include team introductions, admin tasks, and more, the more likely your new hires will be to hit the ground running on day 1.


The workplace is evolving faster than ever before thanks to new HR solutions, rapidly developing technology, ever-present digital security threats, and more, and you need a partner that will help your organization stay agile and on top of the moment.

From strategic talent management to the best onboarding technology, Rival offers secure platforms that enable people to thrive in a changing workplace. Contact Rival today to talk to an expert to see how we can help you attract the best talent and keep them on board and performing up to your expectations.


Rival goes beyond traditional talent management to help our clients attract, retain, and align people to their business.