February 27, 2023

What is the difference between preboarding, onboarding, offboarding, crossboarding and reboarding?

If you are in the human resources world, you definitely are familiar with onboarding. This is an essential part in the employee lifecycle. However, many people are not aware there are some other similar concepts just as important for a good employee management. We are talking about terms such as offboarding, reboarding or preboarding. Perhaps you have heard people talk about some of these, but you are not completely sure about their meaning and their difference. 

Don’t worry, we can help you! At T2W we have an extensive experience in human resources consulting and talent management, so we are familiar with these concepts. In this article, we’ll take a look at the differences between preboarding, onboarding, offboarding, crossboarding and reboarding.  

What is preboarding? 

While many people think that the employee lifecycle begins with the onboarding, actually there is one previous step: preboarding. The preboarding process is a short one and it comprises all the interactions between the new employee and the company since the moment of the hiring up until the first day of work.  

For that reason, many think of preboarding as the initial stage of the onboarding process. Through preboarding, the organization has the first contact with the new employees. Is at this point that the newcomers start creating an opinion about the company. Therefore, it’s important to extend them a warm welcome before the first day of work comes.  

To achieve that, many employers send a welcome pack with company souvenirs. This is great to create a good employer branding. Likewise, some organizations add to the welcome email some internal information of the company and the schedule the newcomer will have on the first day. All these actions have a positive influence on employee experience. 

What is onboarding? 

What is onboarding? 

Onboarding is the process of receiving and preparing new employees for their position. Any new person that enter an organization needs some time to adapt. After all, everything they’ll learn will be new. The objective here is to accelerate and ease the transition so that the newcomer can get used to the culture, the workstyle, the responsibilities and the people in the company. 

What is crossboarding? 

Crossboarding happens when one of the current employees is transferred to a different area in the same company. This usually is part of an internal recruitment strategy. As you can imagine, this type of internal transfer requires a training process. Here, many organizations use upskilling and reskilling. 

While transferred employees are already part of the company, they will arrive to a new area that could be completely unknown to them. In this case, crossboarding will be a key process. It will help these employees to get to know the people in the team, get used to the workstyle, the processes they’ll be responsible of, etc. As a result, they integrate more easily to their new area. 

What is offboarding? 

Offboarding is related to an unavoidable process in the life of every employee: the end of the employment relation. Here, the company creates a goodbye message. Likewise, the soon-to-leave employee, must elaborate reports regarding the growth or problems while performing regular activities. Afterwards, the person receives feedback. Many companies also create exit surveys to improve different aspects of the area. 

Employees can leave voluntarily or by decision of the company. Ideally, this transition should be as friendly as possible so that the relation can end in good terms. Keep in mind that a good employee experience is built from the first day of work up to the very last. Since all this is about a person that is about to leave the company, many people wonder if offboarding is worth the effort. 

At first glance, it might seem secondary, but it’s actually more important than you think. An employee that leaves will definitely speak about the organization with other people. Wouldn’t it be great if that person speaks about you positively? That will help you attract more employees and create a good image around your brand in the market. You can achieve that with a good offboarding. 

What is reboarding? 

Reboarding is related to a very interesting situation: receiving a former employee back into the company. As you know, talent never stays still. People eventually leave the organization for another one where they will have more challenges and responsibilities. However, more often than, not employees go back to a company they previously worked on. 

In general, the person returns and assumes a new position and new responsibilities. In addition, by the time the former employee comes back, the company might have had many internal changes in its internal functioning as well as in personnel. This makes reboarding a pivotal process. It is very similar to a regular onboarding, but is less lengthy since the person has certain knowledge about the organization. 

Now you know what is preboarding, onboarding, crossboarding, offboarding and reboarding. Each of these processes serves a specific purpose for creating a good relationship between the employee and the company.  

At Talent2Win, we strive to align your company’s business objectives with the best Talent Acquisition strategies available. If you want to learn more about the services we offer, do not hesitate to contact us.      

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