REINVENT YOUR FUTURE

Checklists for onboarding members and leaders

By Jim LaDoux
Thriving congregations recognize the importance of positioning people for maximum impact. Your onboarding process helps people start strong and engage in ministry more quickly and effectively.

Listed below are sample orientation checklists. Use the information below as a guide for customizing the onboarding process for your members and leaders. You may wish to ask current staff and leaders the following questions to learn more about what to add to your checklists:
  • What kind of information was most important for you to know when you were first hired or joined our church?
  • What information did you NOT receive when but wish you were given at that time?
  • If you were onboarding new members/leaders/staff, what would you share with them?

Onboarding New Members/Ministry Partners

Items to highlight
  • The church's mission, vision, and values.
  • The church's annual goals, intentions, and themes for the current year.
  • Church staff (1-minute video introductions of each staff member or team).
  • Church structure, elected leaders, and how decisions are made.
  • Roster of elected leaders, staff members, and ministry team leaders.
  • Communication channels and platforms, and how to gain access.
  • Short videos about key ministries and their impact on members/community.
  • Ways to grow spiritually, ways to give financially, and ways to serve others.
  • Suggestions for what to "try on" or learn more about in the next 90 days.

Provide an in person or online tour of your facilities, including:
  • Worship settings and music rehearsal spaces.
  • Faith formation/education rooms and resources.
  • Kitchen and dining areas.
  • Parking, church entrances, and bathrooms.
  • Large and small group meeting spaces.
  • Spaces frequently used for social and servant events.
  • Office space and where to find coffee or a refrigerator.

Onboarding Church Leaders/Servants

Items to highlight
  • The church's mission, vision, and values.
  • The church's annual goals, intentions, and themes for the current year.
  • Church staff (1-minute video introductions of each staff member or team).
  • Church structure, elected leaders, and how decisions are made.
  • Roster of elected leaders, staff members, and ministry team leaders.
  • Communication channels and platforms, and how to gain access.
  • Job descriptions for the roles people will be serving in.
  • Ongoing meeting dates, times, and locations.
  • Resources to support their leadership/servanthood efforts.
  • Suggested next steps for the next 30-90 days.

Provide an in person or online tour of your facilities, including:
  • Spaces highlighted in the new member tour.
  • Locations of light switches & alarm systems.
  • Describe which keys open what doors.
  • Where to find office supplies; who orders supplies
  • Where to pick up mail; staff mail boxes.
  • How to operate office machines (copy machine, telephone system)
  • How to login to computers and wireless systems.
  • Provide a list of pertinent passwords.

Onboarding Church Staff

Items to Review with Paid Staff
  • Church staff (1-minute video introductions of each staff member or team).
  • Church structure, elected leaders, and how decisions are made.
  • Roster of elected leaders, staff members, and ministry team leaders.
  • Communication channels and platforms, and how to gain access.
  • Ongoing meeting dates, times, and locations.
  • Employee policies.
  • Office hours.
  • Employee benefits.
  • Payday schedule; direct deposit information.
  • Vacation request process.
  • Who to call when sick.
  • Employment forms; submit completed/signed W-9 form.
  • Submit bio to be posted on website.
  • Take or submit staff photo.
  • How to set up your work email, access work platforms (MS Teams/Slack, Google).
  • Review policies for using church credit card.
  • Review procedures to submit mileage and hours.
  • Discuss annual performance review process.
  • How to reserve rooms/meeting spaces.

Provide an in person or online tour of your facilities, including:
  • Spaces highlighted in the new member tour.
  • Locations of light switches & alarm systems.
  • Describe which keys open what doors.
  • Where to find office supplies; who orders supplies
  • Where to pick up mail; staff mail boxes.
  • How to operate office machines (copy machine, telephone system)
  • How to login to computers and wireless systems.
  • Provide a list of pertinent passwords.
  • Office space passcodes; how to activate and deactivate alarms, etc.
  • Suggestions for starting strong for the next 30-90 days.

QUESTIONS  |  REFLECTIONS

  1. Do you currently have a process for ongoing members, leaders, and staff?
  2. Which parts of your onboarding processes are working?  Not working?
  3. Which ideas from the information in this blog might you embed into your onboarding process?
  4. Do you have someone in charge of onboarding?
  5. Do you need someone to oversee this ministry and continually improve it?
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