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How to Automate New Employee Onboarding: Part 1

According to at least one study, employee retention is the number one issue on the minds of CEOs today — not just in the U.S., but around the world. And yet, companies often spend very little time onboarding new hires. With up to 20% of staff turnover occurring within the early days of employment, a standardized onboarding process is essential.

This article in Forbes states that it’s all too common that companies have just one or two day onboarding programs that primarily focus on educating new staff members about legal and policy-related rules. The result of these insufficient acclimation efforts are that new employees are left ill-prepared for their first 90 days. They are often left alone to understand their jobs in-depth, uncover vital team relationships, and integrate themselves into their new company’s culture. As a result, firms are losing talent—HR industry studies show that a great amount of staff turnover (possibly as high as 20 percent) can happen within the first 45 days of employment.

How can Insight and Jira improve the onboarding process?

Atlassian's Jira is known for its powerful and flexible workflow engine that allows you to customize workflows to your needs. A good place to start is with templates for Human Resource Management covering talent acquisition and employee onboarding, which are included in Jira.

But to make Jira even more powerful, we would like to take it a step further and include asset management too.

When we talk about managing assets, we mean storing information about all kinds of assets or “objects” related to HR processes, such as information about the employee, computers, phones and other related items.

Insight is an asset management solution that can be added to Jira. It allows companies to manage any kind of assets within Jira, not just HR-related ones, and link them to issues. For example, adding a specific computer to the issue to “assign a computer to new employee”.

Onboarding processes can be quite complicated, but for the purposes of this blog, we are going to address the top-level actions throughout the entire onboarding process, which in this case, spans over approximately 45 days.

Now let’s look at the onboarding process

When a contract has been signed with the employee, the manager creates an onboarding request in Jira with information about the employee such as full name, manager, role, location, and more. The information entered at the beginning is used throughout the process and is important for all automation.

Below you see a request form for Onboard Employee.


In the HR portal, this is the form you get when you click on Onboard Employee request type.


A few of the fields that are filled in when creating the onboarding request are a direct link to Insight objects. Those fields are Manager, Role, Location, Computer, and Phone.

Upon creation of the request, the first automation (Insight post-functions) in the process kicks in and creates an object in Insight for the employee and sets the status of the employee to “Preboarding”. This is the first step in storing employee information in Insight.


The object in Insight that represents the new employee with all the details entered when the Onboard Employee request was created.

After creating the onboarding request, the request follows a workflow throughout the onboarding process, where automation is triggered by each transition.


The workflow for the Onboard Employee request.


So, let’s run through the automation in each step of the process. We’ve already learned that in the first transition (create), the employee object is created in Insight, but there's more.

Create: As mentioned above, the employee object is created in Insight when the onboarding request is created and the status attribute for the object is set to preboarding. In addition, the department attribute for the employee and the department custom field in the issue are both filled in based on the selected role. The issue is assigned to the HR assistant at the given location and finally, three linked issues are created: an access request, hardware request, and a manager task. All linked issues have pre-defined information based on information from the initial onboarding request.

Ready for Day 1: In this transition, more linked issues get created: an orientation task for first day orientations, a task for signing an NDA, and a “meet and greet” task for the employee’s mentor. The status of the employee object in Insight is also updated to "Onboarding".

Day 1 Done: After the first day of work a few more linked issues are created: a manager follow-up task to make sure the manager follows up with the employee in 1 week’s time, an employee task to help the employee get started on some basics, and a separate task for mandatory training.

Week 1 Done: A follow-up task is created for the employee’s manager to make sure they follow up with the employee in one month's time.

Onboarded: At this time the employee is considered to be onboarded and the status attribute for the employee is updated to "Onboarded" and the Onboard Employee request is resolved.


The Onboard Employee request as the agent in JSD sees it.


Each issue created during the process has its own automation which varies based on the issue types. The types and number of issues created throughout the process, and exactly how the process is built, can be adjusted according to each company’s needs.


The example above shows how the employee onboarding process can be partially automated to ensure successful onboarding and follow-up of new employees.

Several issues are created throughout the process to ensure that every little detail is taken care of before the arrival of the new employee and throughout their first month on the job. Every issue has its own process and automation.

Having an active, standardized, and automated onboarding process like the one described above has a several crucial benefits:

  • You make sure that nothing is forgotten in the preparation of your employees’ arrival.
  • You increase employee satisfaction by having everything ready on the first day of work and by following up with them over the first month.
  • You will save time by not having to run around for last-minute fixes and searching for people to help out.
  • You will save money, with a clear and pre-defined procurement process and by not wasting time or potentially having to re-do the recruitment process.

Because of Insight’s best-in-class feature suite and endlessly flexible interface, it’s the top solution choice for Jira users around the world. 

It’s changed the lives of organizations in more than 90 countries, and the time to give the software suite a try has never been better. Click below to get started today!


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To continue to explore how Insight can add value to the onboarding of new employees, read our follow up blog How to Automate New Employee Onboarding: Part 2.


Mindville works with partners worldwide who can help customers adjust Insight and Jira to their needs. Find a partner near you.

Originally published Jun 9, 2020 9:00:00 AM