Building a Strong Foundation at OSU

What are the new tools and resources for hiring managers and new employees? People in meeting

  • The revised NEO program will promote personal connections between new employees and specific Business Center contacts, their supervisors, and others who can become a network of resources for new hires.
  • A streamlined, step-by-step Essential Notice and Welcome Letter will guide new employees through necessary preparations to begin work.
  • A consistent approach to onboarding will be enabled by newly developed checklists for each role in the process (Department/Supervisor, Business Center Human Resources, Business Center Finance and Accounting, the Office of Human Resources, and Environmental Health & Safety).
  • New sessions, including Safety, Ombuds, Mandatory Reporting and Anti-harassment, will be added to the monthly New Employee Orientation and Training for staff and faculty.
  • Updates to the Inside OSU website will ensure a consistent, clear, and thorough message to new employees.
  • A new relocation and moving webpage consolidates necessary information and forms for supervisors and new employees.
  • A "Welcome to OSU" video highlights the university’s mission and shares reasons employees choose to work at OSU.
  • A personal welcome letter from President Ray will include information about OSU’s Strategic Plan 3.0 and the Provost’s Council Ethos.
  • A complimentary week-long parking pass (valid in all lots) for new employees will ease the transition to campus.
  • A new evaluation survey will collect feedback from new hires and allow us to develop metrics to track our progress.

 What is the NEO Lean Project?

  • The New Employee Onboarding (NEO) program is one of our first Lean Process Improvement Projects. This project is important because the improved New Employee Onboarding program will ensure that new employees feel connected with the University more quickly. Ultimately, it will help us retain great and engaged people at OSU.
  • A key part of this and all Lean projects is building bonds between people. Strong relationships with our colleagues make all the difference when it comes to collaborating on projects that advance the goals and strategies of the university. For new employees, individual relationships with key contacts across the University will give them the support they need to be successful team members.

 Why did we need to improve the existing New Employee Onboarding process?

  • We wanted to address the lack of consistency and segmentation of new hire orientation approaches that varied across the University, and instead develop a comprehensive program that delivers onboarding with a University-wide perspective.
  • Historically, the onboarding process had been reactive. We determined that a proactive approach would be more beneficial to all parties involved.
  • Recently hired employees said they were provided limited direction on how to get started, weren’t sure of the tools needed to do their jobs, and were unaware of everything the OSU community has to offer.

 What is the process for making improvements to New Employee Onboarding?

  • A NEO Lean Team, comprised of representatives from Business Centers, the Office of Human Resources, OSU Shared Services, and Environmental Health & Safety, was formed to guide the project.
  • The NEO Lean Team mapped the original onboarding process. It revealed a lack of role clarity, duplication of effort, bottlenecks, lack of training in key areas, inconsistent processes, limited tools, areas of non-compliance, and a lack of a comprehensive roadmap.
  • The team received input and assistance from Academic Affairs, Office of Equity & Inclusion, General Counsel, the Research Office, Environmental Health & Safety, the Office of Human Resources, the Ombuds Office, University Relations & Marketing, and many others across campus.
  • An optimal “lean” process was developed that defines the desired workflow and clearly delineates responsibilities.

 How does this change benefit the OSU community?

  • It ensures new employees will receive comprehensive orientations and mandatory trainings.
  • New employees will feel welcomed and a part of the OSU community. They will become engaged and fully productive more quickly.
  • New resources and tools reduce duplication of effort, save time, and ensure a consistent approach.
  • Ongoing monitoring of newly developed metrics ensures a program that will continue to be flexible and responsive to the needs of OSU. 


NEO Resources