HR Tools & Software to Make Your Onboarding Program Engaging

Explore top HR onboarding tools and how they enhance engagement, simplify workflows, and transform the onboarding experience.

August 2, 2023
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Think your onboarding process is comprehensive? You might be surprised. The right HR onboarding tools can be more than just administrative aids—they can be the game changers that boost employee engagement from day one. 

In this guide, we explore the potential of these tools, discuss their types, and examine their crucial role in streamlining the onboarding process.

What Are Onboarding Tools?

An employee onboarding tool, also known as a digital onboarding system, streamlines the process of integrating new hires into an organization. 

Now, you might wonder, "What is a digital onboarding system anyway?" It is a technology-enabled solution that assists in managing the transition of new hires into a company efficiently and effectively. 

These tools serve multiple purposes:

  • Simplifying administrative tasks related to onboarding, such as document management and task assignment.
  • Building an engaging and welcoming environment for new hires by providing structured workflows and clear guidelines.
  • Helping HR teams to keep track of the onboarding progress and tailor the process to individual needs, which helps make new employees feel seen and valued.

The value of such systems in onboarding is underscored by a survey which found that new hires who had a positive onboarding experience were 3x more likely to feel a strong commitment to their employer.

Regardless of the name they go by, their primary goal is the same: to ensure a smooth and engaging onboarding experience for new hires.

What Are Different Types of Onboarding Tools and Software for Engagement?

The onboarding process, while necessary, can be complex and time-consuming. However, there are various remote onboarding tools to help streamline this process, boost employee engagement, and set your new hires up for success. But what are these tools called, and what do they do?

What Are Onboarding Software Called?

Onboarding software goes by many names. Some common terms include HR onboarding software, onboarding HR software, employee onboarding software, and online onboarding software. 

These tools can automate tasks, send welcome emails, provide video training, manage onboarding tasks, facilitate communication, provide HR management, handle electronic signatures, and more. 

Now let's examine specific types of onboarding software solutions that can help make your onboarding program engaging.

1. Automated Onboarding Tools

Designed to streamline administrative tasks, automated onboarding tools handle various tasks such as form completion, document distribution, and task assignment. In turn, this helps HR teams spend more time and energy crafting engaging onboarding experiences instead of wasting time with manual systems — like 47% of other companies.

Engagement with automated onboarding tools comes from:

  • Regular updates and reminders, keeping new hires informed.
  • The ability for HR teams to craft unique onboarding experiences for each new hire.
  • Interactive orientations and training modules that transform the routine onboarding process into a fun journey.

Notable onboarding tools include:

  • SAP SuccessFactors: This tool provides personalized welcome portals, helps new hires connect with colleagues, and offers goal-setting features for a unique onboarding journey.
  • BambooHR: Known for its versatility, BambooHR offers customizable workflows, e-signature capabilities, and online training modules that ensure a unique onboarding process for each new hire.

Automated onboarding tools free up HR teams from administrative tasks, providing them with more opportunity to create rich, engaging experiences for new hires.

2. Email Onboarding Tools

Email onboarding tools facilitate communication with new hires during the onboarding process. They are crucial for delivering targeted messages, important documentation, and introductions to the company culture.

By customizing email content, HR teams can make the onboarding process more engaging. They can send personalized welcome messages, share success stories, and provide resources that allow new hires to understand their roles better.

Notable email onboarding tools include:

  • MailChimp: This tool offers a variety of email templates, automation features, and analytics to keep new hires engaged through personalized emails.
  • Brevo: An all-in-one email platform that enables HR teams to send tailored onboarding emails, track their success, and automate email sequences, ensuring a smooth onboarding journey.

3. Video Onboarding Tools

Video onboarding tools are digital platforms designed to introduce new hires to the team in a lively and engaging way. These tools help with virtual meetings, training sessions, and team introductions. Through a more visual and interactive experience, new hires can quickly understand their roles and the company culture.

Notable video onboarding tools include:

  • Zoom: Known for its easy-to-use video meetings. It supports interactive team introductions and training sessions.
  • Microsoft Teams: Alongside video meetings, Teams also offers features for team collaboration and sharing documents. This leads to a more well-rounded onboarding experience.

With video onboarding tools, companies can communicate the company's values and expectations to new hires, regardless of their location.

4. Task Management Tools

Task management tools play an essential role in an organized and efficient onboarding process. These tools allow HR teams and managers to assign tasks to new hires and track their progress. They create a structured way for new hires to know what to do and when, making the onboarding process more straightforward and less overwhelming.

Notable task management tools include:

  • Trello: This tool uses a board-and-card system to organize tasks. It's visual and intuitive, making it easy for new hires to see what tasks they need to do next.
  • Asana: Asana allows more detailed task tracking with due dates, subtasks, and assignment features. It ensures nothing gets missed during the onboarding process.

With task management tools, companies can streamline the onboarding process, making it less overwhelming and more enjoyable for new hires.

5. Communication Tools

Communication tools are vital in creating an engaging and interactive onboarding process. They encourage open conversation between new hires, their colleagues, and superiors, which helps new hires feel welcomed and part of the team right from the start.

Notable communication tools include:

  • Slack: A tool that facilitates instant messaging in various 'channels' based on teams, projects, or topics. It's great for quick questions, discussions, and socializing.
  • Microsoft Teams: Teams offers not only instant messaging but also file sharing and video conferencing, making it a versatile communication tool for onboarding.

Communication tools are essential for building an early sense of connection for new hires, contributing to an engaging onboarding process. 

6. Holistic HR Management Tools

Holistic HR management tools combine many different HR tasks into one easy-to-use platform. They handle a broad range of tasks such as new employee onboarding, payroll management, tracking employee performance, and administering benefits. 

A study indicates that most new hires expect to complete more than 50 tasks during their onboarding process. A lot of these tasks are focused on new hire paperwork and administrative hurdles. Holistic HR management tools significantly reduce this burden by automating many of these tasks, making the onboarding experience more engaging and less of a bureaucratic process.

Notable holistic HR management tools include:

  • Workday: It offers cloud-based software for planning, human capital management, and financial management. This tool is known for its user-friendly interface and robust reporting capabilities. 
  • Zenefits: This tool streamlines various HR processes, including onboarding, benefits, payroll, and time tracking, to name a few. Zenefits is loved for its intuitive design and extensive integrations.

These tools improve the onboarding process by simplifying HR tasks and making information readily accessible, leading to an engaging and efficient experience for new hires.

7. Electronic Signature Tools

Electronic signature tools are software platforms that enable a secure, digital way to sign important documents. These tools not only make it possible to sign documents from anywhere and at any time, but they also ensure that the process is legally recognized and secure. 

By removing the need for physical paperwork, they significantly streamline the onboarding process. This means less time is spent on administrative tasks and more time can be devoted to integrating the new hire into the team.

Notable electronic signature tools include:

  • DocuSign: A well-known tool that allows users to sign, send, and manage documents electronically.
  • Adobe Sign: Another popular tool, Adobe Sign, enables swift and secure electronic signatures on any device.

These tools are a critical part of an engaging onboarding process, as they eliminate the cumbersome task of manual document signing, providing new hires with a smooth and efficient onboarding experience.

8. Assembly

The complexity of onboarding can often result in an unsatisfactory experience for new hires. In fact, a Gallup survey shows that only 12% of U.S. employees believe their company does a good job of onboarding. But what if there was a way to streamline the entire process, making it engaging and effective? 

This is where Assembly comes into play.

Assembly is an all-encompassing onboarding tool that wraps up the functions of various onboarding software into one seamless package. It offers an army of features that encourage engagement, simplifying the process for HR and creating a warm welcome for new hires.

Notable features of Assembly include:

  • Automation Capabilities: Assembly automates repetitive tasks in the onboarding process, freeing up HR teams to focus on creating a more engaging experience.
  • Email Integration: Assembly integrates with major email providers, making communication during onboarding smooth and efficient.
  • Video Integration: This feature makes remote onboarding sessions easy, mimicking a real-life experience.
  • Task Management Features: With Assembly, tasks can be tracked, managed, and assigned easily, ensuring that nothing slips through the cracks.
  • In-built Communication Tools: In-platform communication tools foster a sense of belonging among new hires, making them feel part of the team from the onset.
  • Comprehensive HR Management: Assembly simplifies HR management by centralizing all employee information, resources, and onboarding processes.
  • Centralized Information Hub: All employee information and onboarding resources are in one place, making it easy for new hires to find what they need.
  • Employee Surveys and Feedback: Assembly allows HR to conduct surveys (like the New Hire Survey) and collect feedback from new hires, ensuring a positive onboarding experience.
  • Analytics and Reporting: Assembly provides insights into the onboarding process, helping HR identify trends, monitor progress, and make informed decisions.
  • Secure Data Storage: All sensitive employee information is stored securely, providing peace of mind for the HR team and new hires.

Interestingly, employees are more likely to stay with a company that offers continuous training. With its customizable and interactive learning modules, Assembly not only helps companies onboard new employees but also serves as a powerful tool for ongoing training and a successful employer-employee relationship.

Need more proof? Check out Upkeep’s testimonial.

Why Automate the Onboarding Process?

Automating the onboarding process is a strategic move that brings many benefits, particularly in amplifying employee engagement. But, why automate onboarding, and how does it lead to better engagement?

The benefits of automation are multifaceted. Let's check some out:

  1. Efficiency: Automated onboarding systems streamline the tedious administrative tasks associated with welcoming new hires. For instance, an HR team member no longer needs to manually send welcome emails or share orientation schedules. The software does this, saving significant time and resources.
  2. Consistency: Automation ensures every new hire gets the same high-quality onboarding experience. This consistency can boost engagement, as all new hires feel equally welcomed and prepared, reducing feelings of confusion or neglect.
  3. Personalization: An automated system can easily adjust to each new hire's unique needs, creating a personalized onboarding experience. For example, if a new hire prefers video content over written documents, the system can share relevant training videos, fostering a sense of value and respect, which, in turn, heightens engagement.
  4. Feedback Loop: Automation allows for constant feedback, an essential element for increasing engagement. Automated surveys or feedback tools can monitor new hire sentiment throughout the process, providing real-time insights for immediate adjustments if needed.
  5. Time for Human Interaction: With automation taking care of administrative tasks, HR teams can dedicate more time to human interaction. This means more time for personal check-ins, mentorship, and building relationships, all of which are crucial to engagement.
  6. Saves Time: Automation accelerates numerous onboarding tasks, reducing the overall time HR teams spend on them. By automating repetitive tasks, HR staff can focus on more strategic activities, improving productivity.
  7. Organizes Workflow: Automated tools ensure a structured and consistent onboarding process. They help in organizing tasks, setting reminders, and providing a clear sequence of activities, which makes it easier for new hires to navigate their first few weeks.
  8. Manages Important Documents: Automated new employee onboarding tools simplify the management of crucial paperwork. New hires can fill out, sign, and submit documents electronically, and HR can easily track and store these documents in one place. This not only streamlines the process but also reduces the risk of misplaced or lost documents.
  9. Improves Employee Engagement: Automation tools can provide a more interactive and engaging onboarding experience. They offer platforms for video introductions, virtual tours, and interactive training modules, creating an engaging and memorable first impression.
  10. Monitors Onboarding Progress: With automation, HR teams can easily track the progress of a new hire's onboarding process. This allows for timely intervention if any issues arise and helps ensure that new employees are integrating well into their roles.

Automating the onboarding process with the help of tools and software can significantly enhance engagement, making the process more efficient, consistent, personalized, and responsive.

Tips for Selecting the Right HR Tools for Your Engaging Onboarding Program

Selecting the perfect HR tools for your engaging onboarding program can feel challenging. You may ask, 'How do I onboard a new software?' but with some key considerations, it becomes easier. Here are essential tips to help you find the right fit:

1. Identify Your Needs

Begin by identifying your company's unique needs and objectives for the onboarding program. Are you focusing on increasing engagement, expediting administrative tasks, personalizing the onboarding process for each hire, or perhaps a mix of these elements? A clear understanding of your goals will guide you towards the right set of tools.

2. Ease of Use

The tool you select should not only be powerful but also user-friendly. No one likes a steep learning curve.

An intuitive interface, easy navigation, and straightforward functionalities can encourage usage among both HR professionals and new hires. Complicated systems can introduce unnecessary friction, which might hamper the onboarding process.

3. Integration Capability

Your HR tool should be able to seamlessly blend into your existing IT and HR infrastructure. This integration ensures that data transfers smoothly, duplication of tasks is minimized, and precious time is saved. Furthermore, integration reduces the learning curve for employees as they may be familiar with elements of the existing systems.

4. Scalability

Your chosen tool should be future-proof. As your company grows and evolves, the tool should be able to accommodate more users, handle more complex tasks, and still perform optimally. Tools that offer scalability are essentially long-term investments that grow with your company.

5. Customer Support

A tool can be highly efficient and intuitive, but there might be times when you encounter technical difficulties or need assistance. Reliable and responsive customer support can help resolve such issues quickly and ensure your onboarding process doesn't grind to a halt.

6. Data Security

Since HR tools handle sensitive employee information, robust security measures are essential. Ensure that the tool you choose complies with relevant data protection regulations and has measures to prevent data breaches.

7. Consider Feedback

Gather feedback from other businesses or read online reviews. The experiences of other users can provide valuable insights into the tool's functionality, reliability, and effectiveness in a real-world scenario.

The right HR tool for your engaging onboarding program should ideally be a combination of all these factors. It's not always about choosing the most expensive or the most popular option, but rather about finding a tool that fulfills your requirements and guarantees a seamless, engaging onboarding experience.

Revitalizing Your Onboarding with HR Tools

Throughout this article, we've examined how the right onboarding tools and software can breathe new life into your onboarding program, making it engaging and productive. From automation to task management, and from email tools to holistic HR management, every tool brings unique benefits. 

These tools help new hires settle in smoothly, understand their roles better, and feel a part of the company from day one. It's crucial to remember that onboarding is a journey that goes beyond the first day, week, or month. With the right HR tools, you can ensure this journey is seamless and engaging, setting the stage for the new hires' success in your organization.

Ready to transform your onboarding experience? Explore Assembly's comprehensive HR solutions today!

Browse our Free Employee Recognition Guide

Get the foundational knowledge on creating an employee recognition program that boosts employee engagement and helps them feel valued.

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Frequently Asked Questions

Is Assembly SOC 2 compliant?

Yes, at Assembly, security is a top priority. Each quarter, we have ongoing security work that is everyone’s responsibility. While we maintain a strong security posture, it was important for us to prove to our customers that we do everything we claim to do. This led us to pursue a SOC 2 Type II report that would provide evidence of our compliance with industry gold-standard security practice.

What's the ROI for employee recognition?

There is study after study showing that employee recognition leads to increased engagement. This in return creates an environment where employees are happier and more motivated which increase productivity and reduces voluntary turnover significantly. In order to filled critical roles, companies tend to spend nearly twice the value of an annual salary. Assembly is an investment in your employees that supports your bottom line.

Does Assembly offer longer-term contracts?

Yes, we will offer contracts for companies with longer-term agreements to help larger customers have more certainty around future costs.

The minimum agreement term is a 12-month subscription.

Does Assembly offer onboarding support?

We do and for FREE! Any new customer needing further support to get started with Assembly to ensure you're set up for success can request custom onboarding support. Improving your employee experience is about much more than just using our amazing software; it’s about transforming your business to create a workplace that people love. That’s much easier to do with the personal support and advice from our passionate people experts.

Is there a free version of Assembly?

Yes. We offer a completely free plan for up to 50 team members. This plan is intended for teams or organizations that are looking to get started with an employee engagement tool. Keep in mind, this plan is limited in features.

All customers can open an Assembly account for free and get started without a credit card. Then you can change plans as necessary.

How much do rewards cost?

At the time of redemption (when your employees exchange their points for a paid reward) you'll pay face value. If a reward is a $10 Amazon gift card, your cost will be $10. All paid rewards are billed for on a monthly basis.

The good news is that you don't have to pay for rewards upfront because we only charge you when points are redeemed, not when they're earned.

Does Assembly offer discounts?

We offer discounts or educational or charitable organizations. In order to secure a discount, you'll first need to book a demo with a customer support specialist.

For all other organizations, we are willing to consider longer-term agreements in exchange for discounts. To set up annual plans or longer, you will need to book a demo with a customer support specialist.

How do I cancel my plan if needed?

If you're on a month to month plan, you can go here and cancel anytime. If you're having concerns or need help setting up your account for success, you can always book a demo with a customer support specialist.

If you're on a longer-term custom plan, you'll need to reach out to your customer support specialist to cancel your account or email us at

What customizations are available?

Great question! You can customize your core values to match your organization's to boost and track alignment. You can change your currency from the 🏆 emoji (our default) to any emoji of your choice. You can swap our logo for your own. You can also set up company culture rewards such as, "Lunch with the CEO," "Buy a book on us," and so much more!

Who can give or receive recognition?

While we recommend a peer to peer set up where anyone in your organization can give or receive recognition, you can set up Assembly however you want. If you need to limit the people who can give or receive recognition, that's perfectly fine and can be done from your Admin, here.

What integrations are available?

Assembly connects to the tools your employees use every day to offer an easy, seamless experience with minimal change management.  

Assembly has integrations with HCM/HRIS systems like ADP, Google, Office 365, and Slack. We also integrate with communication tools like Slack and Teams so you and your employees can access Assembly wherever they work now.

What's your average adoption rate?

That depends on the company's permissions set up. That said, over 90% of the employees on Assembly's platform are recognized on a monthly basis. That means nearly every employee across all of our customers are receiving regular recognition from their peers, managers, or leadership. We're extremely proud of this.

Must rewards be set up to use Assembly?

They are not required. You can use Assembly without having rewards set up. However, we don't recommend it if you intend to have a high adoption and usage rate. You can always keep the costs down by offering internal culture rewards that are fulfilled by you internally.

Are points required to use Assembly?

No, you can remove allowances from anyone or everyone. It's up to you but we do recommend using points whether they're worth a real dollar value or not. Companies that use points have a much higher engagement rate even if those points don't exchange for real dollars.

Could find the answer you are looking for?

Please schedule time with an expert and we will help you to get all your questions answered