Onboarding from Home – Tips & Advice to Make the Most of Starting a Job Fully Remote

ORIGINALLY PUBLISHED ON 8/5/20, THIS POST WAS EDITED ON 5/17/21 TO INCLUDE A NEW ARTICLE. (See “For additional reading.”)

More companies are opting for positions to be fully remote. As a new hire, the onboarding process allows for an insider look into your role, the culture, your peers and how to succeed in your new role. However, onboarding and learning the ins-and-outs of your organization will look a little different when you are doing this from the comfort of your home.

Here are some suggestions adapted from Vault’s 6 Tips for Starting and Succeeding at a Fully Remote Job, to allow you to learn and thrive as a new employee working from home.

Read your contract, new employee handbook and/or company website

  • One of the first things when beginning a new job is to closely read your contract and/or handbook to become fully aware of your new company’s policies, requirements, and expectations. Being fully remote, it is important to grasp as much information as you can about your role and performance to set you up for future success.

Create a well-functioning workspace

  • A successful remote career necessitates having a space where you can concentrate, research, write, and maintain contact with coworkers, colleagues, and clients. Websites like Family HandymanPinterest, and Happy Housie offer ideas to transform a space, table, or closet into an office. For productivity, it is best to designate a space for only yourself to avoid distractions.

Schedule “Coffee Chats” with your coworkers

  • In the virtual space, it can be hard to connect with your coworkers. Setting up a time to get to know your coworkers allows them to learn about you and ways you can collaborate. Being able to learn whom you can ask questions, gain insight or seek advice from allows for partnerships to be made.

Learn your colleagues’ communication preferences

  • Does your organization use multiple communication channels or software systems? In the virtual space, it is normal to use many types of software to connect, host meetings and communicate. It is important to ask your colleagues the preferred way of chatting to make sure you are maintaining clear communication to get your work done.

Be curious and ask questions

  • We all may be in our own homes, but it is still okay to ask questions! Now more than ever, it is easy to email, message or call your supervisor or colleagues to inquire about information. There will be a learning curve to get acclimated with the organization so keep those questions coming. Be sure to use proper grammar, spelling, and tone when conveying your questions.

For additional reading, check out 5 Books College Graduates Entering the Hybrid Workplace Need to Read and 3 Tips for Starting a Job Remotely.

A final thought to keep in mind when beginning a work from home position – you might owe income tax to two states.