When I worked at a larger company, a small part of my VP role was welcoming new employees during their onboarding sessions. Every other week on Tuesdays at 10:35 a.m., I had a dedicated slot to introduce myself and talk about the product strategy team to a roomful of new hires from any of approximately a dozen offices across North America.

I was only one small part of a well-oiled machine that handled all aspects of the new employee experience — from the “first friend” program, to enrollment in health benefits, to handling options grants, to fulfilling I9 verifications, to accessing the company’s internal systems, to security, to the first purchase at the company store. My part took less than 10 minutes in what was a week-long process.

Contrast this to onboarding program at Gain Compliance.

Today’s group is twice as big as normal — that’s right, we actually have two developers who are starting on the same day. And getting them integrated into the company’s systems and practices falls not to the Human Resources department — which is good, since we don’t have one. Rather, these responsibilities comprise just a portion of one person’s role (mine, incidentally).

A company of our size and structure simply does not require the time, nor does it justify full-time headcount to handle health insurance, payroll, or expense reimbursement. This is one of the advantages of running a single location, early-stage startup with a focus on capital efficiency.

So, rather than a week-long program where dozens of new hires are converging from remote offices, I met one-on-one meeting with each person. It took less than an hour for both meetings, and any subsequent follow-up questions are easily handled since we all sit in the same office.

This left the the rest of the day to focus on the job-specific parts of onboarding — how to contribute to actual product development.

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