Top 10 Virtual Onboarding Tips from Jeffrey Moran

Anthony Hickey

Again recapping our Trust Insight Webinar Series, we were privileged to be joined by the knowledgeable and personable Jeffrey Moran. Drawing from his vast experience as a sales trainer, learning consultant, and communications coach with IBM, Jeff offered his insights on how to successfully onboard new hires in a remote setting.

Having successfully led IBM's transformation from a face-to-face new hire induction training programme, to a complete 100% virtual onboarding experience, Jeff offered the following tips to those facing the relatively new challenges presented in remote onboarding.


Top 10 Virtual Onboarding Tips

  1. Organisations should not seek to replicate comprehensive face to face onboarding practices. Screen fatigue can be a real factor where information sessions are lengthy and information heavy.

  2. As opposed to replicating a traditional induction, organisations should focus on providing a sense of connection and belonging to new hires, befitting the complex nature of starting a new role remotely.

  3. To counteract information overload, it is beneficial to break up information sessions into smaller chunks of time over shorter days, with regularly scheduled breaks.

  4. A variety of educational formats are beneficial in ensuring participants remain engaged. Breakout team activities followed by group discussions are suitable methods for providing a multifaceted, engaging induction.

  5. Speakers must be mindful of the volume of technical information they wish to share. It is beneficial to consider key points as opposed to running through a lengthy slide deck, offering personal and relatable stories on relevant experiences.

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  6. A variety of functions and areas can be represented by relevant staff members, who can speak to their individual roles. This too should be done in a relatable way, avoiding information heavy slideshows.

  7. Video resources are best digested as sperate from the group element of inductions. An appropriate strategy here is to ask participants to watch the videos and return for group discussions.

  8. 20 is the ideal maximum number of new hires that should participate in any one induction group. Where numbers exceed this, split groups are preferable.

  9. Those delivering need to be comfortable with silence, allowing participants time to digest the information and respond. This will differ somewhat from face to face format due to the digital nature.

  10. Crucially, organisations should gather feedback from new hires on how to improve the process, with these suggestions being used to enhance the programme continuously.


Most apparent in Jeff’s account, is the flexible approach take to remote onboarding. Realising early that information and process heavy information sessions did not translate to a virtual medium, a different approach was needed. That approach was developed with the complexity brought about by a pandemic in mind, building connection with staff to ensure their initial experience was a positive one.

Above is a brief summary of Jeff’s main talking points, but he shared so much valuable information that we would strongly recommend you watch the whole recording of the webinar

Website slideshow (11)


More resources on onboarding here:

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