What Is Orientation? Difference Between Orientation & Onboarding 

by Job & Career 23 August 2023


Orientation is necessary for professional settings to familiarize new employees with the workplace. This takes the new employee through the company policies and an introduction to their coworkers.

The orientation program also takes employees through their roles and responsibilities in the new workplace.

If you are wondering what orientation is and how it takes place, then go through this article. 

Here, you will have a detailed understanding of orientation and onboarding. So, keep reading.

What Is Orientation?

What Is Orientation

Orientation is very important in a professional setting. An orientation program means familiarizing the new recruits in a company with the company policies, the coworkers, and their roles and responsibilities in the company. 

When a company hires a new employee, they have an onboarding process to familiarize a new worker with the platform and their coworkers. This helps them easily settle in and have a better working experience from day one. An orientation program allows the new employees to understand their roles, the hierarchy, and the company’s objectives and motto.

Why Is Orientation Important?

Why Is Orientation Important

Orientation programs are for making the first impression count. Smart companies with thoughtful employers prioritize the importance of orientation. It is the first official interaction of an employee with their new coworkers and the company where they are starting to work.

When a company introduces its new employees to the existing workforce, it shows the work culture they have built. The process of a warm welcome adds to the building blocks of an organization. 

An orientation allows the new employee to understand their role in the workforce. This easily allows them to pick up the pace and improve their efficiency quickly. Below are some of the necessary reasons why a company needs to prioritize orientation–

  • Orientation helps new employee understand their roles in the company. 
  • A good orientation allows new employees to get familiarized with their new workplace and their work culture.
  • It provides the employee with first-hand experience about how their life is going to be while working in this new organization. 
  • Orientation helps employees adapt to the new environment much faster.
  • The employers and the employee have a better communication window thanks to the orientation program. They can carry out communication with the other people in the team or in other teams. 
  • A first impression helps increase trust, loyalty, and familiarity between new joiners and the existing workforce. 

What Is The Difference Between Orientation And Onboarding?

What Is The Difference Between Orientation And Onboarding

Orientation and onboarding are almost similar but different. Orientation is a part of onboarding. Some basic differences make them unique and necessary for a good work culture. 

Go through the table below to better understand the orientation program. 

Orientation is for the overall role of an employee in the company. Onboarding is about the specific role they have been hired in the workforce. The onboarding process will familiarize the employee with their day-to-day work. 
The orientation process is common across all departments. Employees working in different workforces within an organization have almost the same orientation program. The onboarding process depends on the employee’s job profile and is different across different departments. It varies according to the employee’s designation and department. 
Orientation involves a formal interaction among most of the workforce within the organization. It is basically a basic office introduction. Onboarding is a little informal. Some employers have informal arrangements like a lunch with the team heads of the new joiners. 
Orientation is a one-time event. It only happens once during the start of an employee’s career. The onboarding process is an ongoing process that takes place over a period. It takes the new employee through a journey until the new employee has until they are settled in. Also, the onboarding process might last for a few more months. 

What Are The Best Practices For Orientation?

What Are The Best Practices For Orientation

Orientation is very important for both new employees and employers. However, due to a lack of knowledge, many employers make the process boring. Some employers just dump work-related information on the new employees and expect they will understand. 

However, this needs to be very engaging. A new employee needs to feel the lasting impression of the orientation program instead of forcing it on them. Here are some of the best practices for orientation –

A Good First Impression

The employees need to have a good first impression of their workplace through their orientation program. The organization can make the first day of employment memorable for the new employee.

Some of these processes can be preparing their work desk before they arrive. Giving a proper office tour is also a part of orientation, and it allows the employees to be familiar with everyone. All of these processes come under creating a good first impression about the workplace.

Do Not Delay

The best way to make the orientation a good experience is by not delaying it too much. Sometimes employees have to wait too long after signing their offer letter on the first day. The manager needs to inform the new employee of everything in advance and tell them what they can expect. 

Make The Session Interactive

Orientation does not mean dumping all the information at once. The employer needs to have interactive sessions with them to make the process interesting for the new employees. It will help the employer/manager understand the new employee better and provide the work-related information little by little. 

One ON One Meeting

During the orientation, the manager should have a one-on-one conversation with the new employees. This makes them feel valued at the workplace. Also, a manager needs to keep interacting with the new employee so that they are not facing any issues. 

Final Words

Orientation is a necessary practice for helping employees settle in and become familiar with their workplace. When you are getting hired for a job at a workplace, you can expect your manager or hiring manager to take you through an orientation program. 

I hope that this article was helpful. However, if you want to ask us any similar questions, you can take that to the comment section below.

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Shahnawaz is a passionate and professional Content writer. He loves to read, write, draw and share his knowledge in different niches like Technology, Cryptocurrency, Travel,Social Media, Social Media Marketing, and Healthcare.

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