On- and offboarding team members#

Having clear onboarding processes ensure that group members are off to a good start in the lab. Offboarding processes ensure that everything is taken care off when lab members leave for a future step. The on- and offboarding checklists below provide some pointers on how to set up the on/off boarding checklists of your group, that can be a part of your Team Manual.

Onboarding Checklist#

  • Review relevant documents provided in a main resource such the Team Manual. Information may include:

    • List of team members, their roles and projects

    • Institutional policies as well as participation guidelines of the research group, institute, funder or country.

    • Code of Conduct and reporting mechanism.

    • Point of contacts for IT, HR, data protection, legal, communications or other teams who you might need to connect for different purposes.

    • Authorship and contributorship guidelines.

  • Check whether the team has a Data Management Plan or whether you need to set this up yourself

    • Review your storage options and access to software and tools such as Electronic Lab Notebooks.

    • Especially when working with sensitive data it is important to familiarise new team members with the recommended practices.

    • Consider options for long term storage and data sharing

  • Set up documentation for your workflows (lab notes, project repository, README files) based on the recommendations provided by your team (ideally outlined in the Team Manual or Data management Plan).

    • Check whether there are existing templates that can be reused.

  • Ensure access to all needed facilities (lab pass, keys, folders, storage locations).

  • If any of this information is not clear, provide feedback on the onboarding process to improve it for future lab members!

Offboarding Checklist#

  • Research objects are publicly shared via an appropriate data repository

  • Research objects that are not publicly shared are stored internally and responsibilities have been transferred, including access to documentation (READme files or labnotes) and ethical approvals.

  • Research objects that are dispensable are cleaned up to avoid unnecessary storage clutter and confusion.

  • The content of the Data Management Plan has been transferred, so that data can be found and reused within the research team.

  • It is clear which physical reagents are relevant and where they are stored - irrelevant reagents have been cleaned up.

  • Contact details for the future are provided - other personal data is removed

  • Have an exit meeting with supervisor/department head or HR.

  • Return any borrowed property (keys, passes, equipment).

  • The leaving lab member can be provided with a statement that describes their contributions during their employment, instead of having to rely on future reference letters.


More information#