Onboarding checklist for UW managers hiring an employee approved for telework
Onboarding a new employee working remotely includes many of the same practices as welcoming an employee to campus, but with greater intentionality on helping make connections and understand culture.
Prepare for the employee’s first day of telework or remote work
☐ Review new employee onboarding resources for required tasks to be completed by new employees and to learn useful practices for onboarding. If the employee lives locally, consider scheduling in-person onboarding meetings and activities. For employees unable to meet in-person, refer to the Additional considerations section for more information and options.
☐ Review the appropriate Telework Agreement to familiarize yourself with its components, outline your expectations and begin to draft telework and on-site requirements, as applicable to the telework arrangement.
☐ Ensure equipment is available or ordered and shipped for the employee’s first day.
☐ Identify equipment, tools, and systems needed to ensure team members working onsite can seamlessly interact with the teleworking employee (e.g., video cameras in conference rooms, familiarity with Zoom scheduling and screen sharing.
☐ Review departmental and University policies regarding equipment purchase and use.
Build collegiality by involving your team
☐ Discuss your team’s concerns and requests, and answer questions they may have about the new employee’s telework or remote arrangement.
☐ Identify and document team norms to ensure that telework is as seamless as possible with coworkers who are onsite such as meeting scheduling expectations and norms, tools and technology for collaborative use, etc.
☐ Ask for volunteers to participate in onboarding and training tasks
☐ Identify a peer mentor or other mentoring opportunities for your new employee
Build trust and manage results by communicating with the new teleworker
Send a welcome email to the new employee which may include the following:
☐ The Telework Agreement with a request they review prior to their first day, and think about (and/or fill out) sections on expectations.
☐ Your expectation for in-person attendance on their first day and at a required orientation, if applicable, or discussion of options if the employee is not attending in person.
☐ A brief description of your management style and the steps you will take as a manager of a teleworker.
☐ Workplace information from Environmental Health & Safety, if applicable.
Develop plans and schedules for the employee’s first day and weeks
☐ Discuss and approve your employee’s Telework Arrangement, being very specific about work schedule, and expectations for communications (responding to emails, answering calls, attending meetings by Zoom or phone). If applicable, also discuss the types of activities that may require in-person attendance.
☐ Discuss equipment needs and document provided or purchased equipment, per University and departmental policy. Retain records of equipment provided or purchased.
☐ Introduce your new employee to your team, including other employees who are teleworking or with other work arrangements.
☐ Provide opportunities to help teleworking employees feel the organizational culture through team meeting connections, group emails, and informal online gatherings.
☐ Jointly schedule, with your new employee, future check-in meetings including any occurring on an employee’s planned telework day.
☐ Provide training to help your employee set up their email and voicemail and how to access University systems and telework tools (e.g., Zoom, VPN, remote desktop) remotely.
☐ Ensure employees are added to the applicable listservs, Teams channels, and other collaborative tools.
☐ Designate a frequent check-in to discuss the telework arrangement.
☐ Provide your employee with a written plan or checklist for onboarding, including providing names, emails, and phone numbers of colleagues who will provide training or mentorship. This can serve as a performance review plan and include objectives to meet, tasks to accomplish, and products to develop along with timeframes for work products.
Measure outcomes at least monthly
☐ Focusing on measuring outcomes (the position, not the person), discuss with individual team members, including the teleworker, how the arrangement is working or not working for them and/or their clients/stakeholders.
☐ Evaluate work products for quality, quantity, and timeliness and evaluate whether the teleworker met expectations regarding availability and communications when teleworking.
Evaluate and update plans and expectations frequently and annually
☐ Frequently evaluate the success of telework plans and identify opportunities for course corrections that can be made at any time.
☐ Telework arrangements should be renewed annually. Plan ahead for a discussion around renewal, including by asking your employer to review their performance and the details of their telework plan and to offer suggestions for changes, if needed.
During normal operations, many onboarding tasks such as verifying worker eligibility for employment (completing Form I-9), picking up a Husky Card, and meeting co-workers are easily completed in-person. However, it is not always required they be completed in person. For assistance with onboarding an employee remotely, contact your department administrator or payroll coordinator.