New hire checklist: A step-by-step guide to onboarding employees in Brazil


Jun 12, 2023

Congratulations on making your first hire in Brazil! But the work isn't over yet—the next step is their onboarding process, which will help set the stage for their time at your company.

Onboarding is a crucial time for new hires. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) estimates that as many as 50% of employees leave a job within their first 18 months, and their onboarding experience may be to blame—Gallup reports that just 12% of employees think their company does a great job with onboarding.

In other words, by nailing it, you set your new employees up to thrive! But onboarding missteps could have major consequences, from employee turnover to more serious issues, like non-compliance with Brazil's labor laws.

A good onboarding process involves a lot of moving pieces. From paperwork and compliance to device administration, training, benefits enrollment, and a 90-day plan for success, the checklist below will help you get your Brazilian employees up to speed—and ensure their success beyond onboarding.

Before their first day

  • Complete an employment background check. In Brazil, it's customary for an employment background check to be done as part of the hiring process before onboarding begins. While it's legal (and common) to look into things like a potential new hire's education and employment history, many background checks that are common in other countries are considered discriminatory in Brazil, so be careful about what information you collect. Read our full guide to employment background checks in Brazil to learn more.
  • Send an offer letter. When you're ready to make a job offer, send your Brazilian employee an offer letter (or employment contract). To comply with Brazilian labor laws, it needs to include certain elements, like their job description, probationary period, compensation, benefits, collective bargaining agreements (CBAs), notice period, and other termination terms. It should also be written in Portuguese. Read our full guide on creating offer letters for employees in Brazil.
  • Do the necessary paperwork. After the employment agreement, there's more paperwork to do: income tax documents, legal agreements, payroll records, registration for social security contributions and FGTS, non-disclosure agreements (NDAs), and more. Your onboarding software might make this process difficult, requiring multiple email chains with stakeholders and signatories across your organization—but there's a better way.
  • Enroll them in benefits. Mandatory benefits in Brazil include minimum wage, severance funds, 13th-month salary, maternity leave and paternity leave, sick leave, time off, a vacation bonus, and more—and even though all Brazilians receive national healthcare, it's common for employers to offer supplementary health insurance. Find the breakdown in our guide to employee benefits in Brazil.
  • Add them to payroll. Brazil requires payroll transactions to be in Brazilian Real. To stay compliant with local laws, you also need to keep detailed payroll records for all employees. Check out our full guide to running payroll for employees in Brazil
  • Order and configure their devices. Your entire global talent pool—in Brazil, Latin America, and all over the world—needs the right tools to succeed. Before their first day, order and configure any devices you new hire will need so they can hit the ground running.
  • Set up their app accounts. When they arrive for their first day, your new hire will need access to all the apps that help them do their job: Slack, Zoom, Google Drive, email, and more. You can set up their app accounts ahead of time so they don't waste any of their first workday (or workweek) trying to get access they need.
  • Prepare any resources they'll need. These can include:
    • A copy of their onboarding checklist
    • An employee handbook
    • A brief about your company's culture and values
    • A team directory
    • An agency for their first day
    • Their job description
    • A list of their top priorities
    • Any other role-specific resources they may need
  • Schedule their orientation (and a get-to-know-you event with the team!). Before their first day, make sure stakeholders like your new hire's manager, team, and close peers have time blocked for 1:1s and getting-to-know-you events.
  • Assign them an onboarding mentor. Everyone needs someone to show them the ropes. Assign your new hire a mentor to guide them through their onboarding process—and make sure that person has time to prepare!
  • Set up their workspace. If your new hire is working on-site, set up their desk or office before their first day. Make sure their devices and resources are there and ready—and consider adding a welcoming touch like some fun decor or a small welcome gift like flowers or an edible treat.
  • Send a welcome email. Just before your new hire's first day, create a welcome email that helps them know what to expect. Include things like a first-day agenda, who to check in with when they arrive at work, and anything else they need to know to feel comfortable arriving for their first day.

On Day 1

  • Give them an agenda or plan for their first day. If this wasn't included in the welcome email, provide it to your new hire when they arrive—it will help them know where to start.
  • Give them an office tour. If your new employee is working on-site, one of the first to-do's on their first day is an office tour. Make sure not to miss important safety info like bathrooms, emergency exits, and fire extinguishers.
  • Schedule a 1:1 with their manager. On their first day, your new hire needs to get to know their manager or supervisor, who can welcome them to the team, answer any questions they have, and help them get started.
  • Schedule a 1:1 with their onboarding mentor. After meeting their supervisor, your new hire should meet with their onboarding mentor so they can get acquainted, too.
  • Have a get-to-know-you event with their team or closest peers. Their first day is likely to be pretty busy, but try to have a getting-to-know-you event with their team. Lunch is a great time for this—it's when many Brazilian employees gather and socialize while they take a break from the workday.
  • Provide them with a list of contacts. Your new hire is sure to have questions throughout their first day (and beyond!). Make sure to give them a list of contacts with brief guidance about who to reach out to for different types of questions and needs.

During their first 90 days

  • Schedule organizational and role-specific training. Your new hire will likely encounter a learning curve in their new role, so give them time to settle in and learn about the company first. Also keep in mind that workers in Brazil tend to build close relationships with your colleagues—and give your new hire plenty of time to get to know their team. Then, start pivoting to role-specific training and goals to help them ease into their new job.
  • Assign work and help them set goals. As your new hire settles in, you can start adding tasks and priorities to their plate. Start small, and be sure to make their goals clear and achievable. One great way to do this is by using a framework like SMART goals—setting goals that are Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Realistic, and Time-bound. This will help avoid that new job panic of not knowing what to do at work.
  • Schedule regular check-ins and mentorship to help them stay on track. These can be scheduled 1:1 meetings, or even just catch-up lunches. You'll want to discuss progress with your new hire and answer their questions as they arise. Start with check-ins scheduled at 30, 60, and 90 days, but be flexible in case your new hire wants to meet more or less frequently than that.
  • Offer regular feedback as they get settled in. Your new hire will learn the ropes faster with regular, clear feedback. Let them know when they're on the right track—and help them redirect if they stray away from meeting their goals.
  • Seek their feedback on how you can improve the onboarding experience. Keep in mind that no one knows your onboarding process better than an employee who's going through it. Keep the door open for your new employee to tell you what's working and what could be improved for future hires.

Onboarding new employees in Brazil is easy—and fast—with Rippling

If you're going to hire employees, independent contractors, or remote workers in Brazil, you need more than just a new hire checklist: you need Rippling. 

Rippling makes it easy to onboard and manage employees and contractors around the world—in one system that helps keep you compliant with local employment laws and regulations.

And with Rippling, onboarding new employees is a breeze. Complete and verify background checks, write and send offer letters, send, sign, and store digital documents, and localize onboarding materials to your new hire's home country—all from one centralized location.

Rippling and its affiliates do not provide tax, accounting or legal advice. This material has been prepared for informational purposes only, and is not intended to provide, and should not be relied on for, tax, legal or accounting advice. You should consult your own tax, legal and accounting advisors before engaging in any related activities or transactions.

last edited: July 13, 2023

The Author

Christina Marfice

Christina is a writer, editor, and content strategist based in Chicago. Having lived and worked in Argentina, Colombia, Mexico, and Peru, she’s bringing her expertise on hiring in Latin America to Rippling.