Onboarding / 

3 Misconceptions About Emailing New Hires Before Day 1, Debunked!

After an intense negotiation period, you have finally found the candidate you were looking for. The paperwork is in place and Day 1 booked in the calendar. Now, most new recruits are scheduled to start working 2-3 months after signing the contract. During this period questions, concerns, and new ideas can arise. You've most likely got preparatory information that you would want to share with your new colleague before their first day at the office. However, many employers hesitate or even refuse to contact their new hires via email before they have officially joined the company. Here are 3 common excuses, debunked!

1. ”Well, HR is unable to communicate with new recruits because they have no official work email activated yet, and it’s inappropriate to email their private email accounts.”

We have all heard this excuse before. Many employers worry about being perceived as unprofessional if they contact their new recruit via a personal email. In most cases, the employees do not gain access to their work email before day 1. Therefore, between contract signing and the first day at work, sadly many new hires experience nothing but silence and no communication. This is a missed opportunity. You might be of the opinion that sending emails before day 1 is being perceived unprofessional or intrusive by new employees. On the contrary, it is very appreciated by the new hire as it opens up a new channel of communication that both parties benefit from. Not only is this prime Employer Branding as it shows that you are available to your colleagues early on it also sets a relaxed and communicative tone for your future relationship.


2. “Honestly, I wouldn’t want to bother our new employee, they haven’t even started working yet.”

There is this misconception that new recruits find it annoying and inconsiderate to be contacted by their colleagues before they have started their new jobs. Employers are afraid of coming off as difficult and overbearing, when in reality it is appreciated by many hires as it eases them into the job. Imagine arriving at your new office and being met by not only your workload, but also several new faces in a new office with a bunch of unwritten rules that you have not been made aware of. By opening up a channel of communication with your new colleague before day 1 you can start your pre-boarding process by giving them valuable information, teaching them the new tools they need, and introducing them to some of their colleagues. Remember, the new hire probably has questions and ideas of their own, and reaching out to them might be the green light that they have been waiting for to contact you as well.


3. “Emailing with them before day 1 might give them access to sensitive information about our business.”

The truth is you as an employer are in total control of the information you want to share. You have the option of sharing sensitive information about your different processes, targets and vision statements, as a way to prepare them for the organization and how you work. Or, you can be selective and only share information about general things such as company values and office etiquette rules. Furthermore, don’t forget that emailing is also a 2-way channel of communication and can, therefore, be used for many different things by both parties. 

So having debunked the most frequent reasons to refrain from emailing new hires before day 1, there is actually much to gain by reaching out by email and start preboarding. Having said that, keep in mind that emailing is just a communications channel. The actual preboarding and onboarding content - whether it be video, documents, quiz, etc. - should happen on a sharable platform where they easily can get access and you as an employer can track and follow up.

Want to know more about how to create a great Employee Preboarding and Onboarding program?

3 Steps to Making your Digital Onboarding Successful

The Preboarding Checklist: How to excite, engage, and prepare your new hire before day 1

Onboarding mistakes to avoid - and what you can do instead



Rebecca Cannerfelt
Rebecca Cannerfelt