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onboarding experiences

creating memorable

Sample Timeline

Three Steps to a Memorable 

Onboarding Experience

Creative Ideas for Making the
First Serve Day Memorable

Onboarding at Inspire

4 easy steps for onboarding that start with the letter “C”

Clear the Confusion


The Wednesday before their first serve date the Captain will call the person onboarding. Captains introduce themselves and include:

  1. Confirming their first serve date

  2. Location & arrival time to meet the captain

  3. First-day expectations

  4. Sending email instructions on how to use the Planning Center app (see 'Understanding Planning Center'

  5. Answering any questions

  6. Praying with them


Continue the Conversation

After they have served twice, Team Leads will do a quick temperature check to get some feedback and see how they are doing (see 'Temp checks').

How you on board your new team member will determine the difference between their success or disappointment. It will clear away confusion and insecurity, and assimilate them onto the team in a healthy, effective and memorable way that will produce lasting results.

  • 48 hours after choosing an area to serve, they should receive a call from the Team Lead, introducing themselves and expressing excitement that they have chosen to serve, and be a part of something bigger than themselves.

  • In this call, they should also be told what color they will be serving on, including their first serve Sunday date.

  • End the call by informing them that their captain will be contacting them the Wednesday before their first serve.


Cultivate the Excitement

Create the Moment

“We don’t remember days, we remember moments” – Cesare Pavese


Captains, the best volunteer onboarding is memorable. It is both personalized and practiced-based.  Memories are made of moments. So you want their first serve day to be a powerful moment in their life. Below are easy yet impactful ways of doing this:

  1. Be at the meeting location before they arrive, and greet them before they greet you.

  2.  Introduce them to the team in a celebratory way. Here are a few ideas:

    • have their name on a sign

    • a basket with their favorite snacks

    • a quick get to know you game

    • a team photo with them, to be framed and mailed

    • social media shout outs

    • anything else that would make the moment turn into a great memory.

  3. Hands-on Training. The last thing any volunteer wants is to feel useless.

The success & failure of an onboarding experience starts with an efficient timeline. From the moment a prospective team member turns in their covenant to serve, to their first day of training, timely communication is vital.  

Below is the standard timeline for all Inspire Teams to follow ensuring that our first impression is a good one!

Day 1: Sunday

  • Executive Admin. receives signed covenant 

  • Inputs member into database + Alerts corresponding Team Lead 

Day 3: Tuesday (48 hours)

  • After covenant is received, corresponding Team Lead makes contact

  • Introductory phone call + Onboarding email + Schedule training day + Team Lead contacts corresponding captain

Day 11: Wednesday (4 days before training)

  • Before training, corresponding captain confirms

  • Captain phone call + Confirms training date + Answers any questions regarding onboarding email 

Day 15: Sunday (Training day begins)

  • Captain greets new teammate at the door 

  • Introduces teammate + Trains teammate + Makes it memorable/special

Lead Introductory Phone Call
(insert script + onboarding email)

 Captain Confirmation Phone Call
(insert script)

First Sunday Training Day
(greet at the door, introduce, memorable/special, shadow)  

  • Batch of their favorite cookies

  • A welcome breakfast

  • Have the team go to lunch after service with the new members

  • Create a small welcome basket filled with their favorite things 

  • Create a welcome video with everyone on the team introducing themselves and expressing their excitement to send the the night before 

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