Induction and Onboarding

On my way to a meeting this morning I listened to a radio show where they were discussing “Induction and Onboarding”. These two terms are to do with Human Resource Management and how they integrate a new employee into the company.

Now I must be honest, although I did a one year Business Management Diploma … and one of the modules was Human Resource Management … I had never heard of “onboarding”. Without hearing what this was on the radio show I would have thought it referred to being on a skateboard or a surfboard.

Induction normally happens on the first day of employment when the new employee is introduced to the business, its culture, its vision and mission statement (these four aspects are briefly mentioned), where HR is to be found, where to park, where the toilets are, getting a company email address, where one would work … office, open plan office, store, workshop, front desk and go through the contract to be signed and job description. Normally HR does induction (or orientation) in a day or part of a day. Onboarding has a broader scope. From the start of employment, the business, its culture, its vision and mission statement are worked through and held up regularly to make certain the new employee understands and becomes part of these four vital aspects. Meetings will be conducted on a weekly or bi-monthly basis to mentor and monitor the new employee. The designated supervisor will mentor and monitor the new employee daily and as the new employee gets a handle on the business and its culture, the supervisor will back off, give more rope encouraging the new employee to take ownership of his or her portfolio. Onboarding could last for one month, three months, six months or even a year. When the supervisor is happy with the new employee’s progress, the new employee becomes credited with full freedom to perform and often becomes used as an overseer when new employees are appointed. Do not confuse onboarding with say, a three month probationary period.

In Christianity we do the same, but use different terms. Please read:

Mt 28:16 ‘Then the eleven disciples went to Galilee, to the mountain where Jesus had told them to go. 17 When they saw him, they worshiped him; but some doubted. 18 Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”’

As you know, this passage is known as The Great Commission because of the content … this is Jesus’ marching orders to His disciples … and to us if we are His disciples. In obedience the disciples went to the mountain Jesus told them to go. Remember that before this He had revealed Himself to them so that as soon as they saw Him they worshipped Him as Lord … yet some doubted. I wonder who these were. Some of the eleven or some other disciples? Verse 11 reveals His supreme, unquestionable authority. There is no authority in Heaven itself or on the earth that does not fall into His reign and control. He is Lord! As the Victor over death, sin and the devil … He is truly King of the Kingdom and therefore has the right to instruct or command His followers to be about Kingdom Business. (1) Mobilize themselves through going to all nations; (2) Make disciples of (from) all nations; (3) Induct … introduce … initiate them into the Kingdom through baptism; (4) Teach the new converts they are discipling the whole counsel of God. What follows is Jesus’ promise to be with his obedient and faithful followers always … to the end of the age … meaning … all the way to Glory.

1) Induction … the going and making is an evangelistic reference. You cannot make a disciple unless you share the Gospel properly and see the planted seed all the way through to conversion.

The person who hears the Gospel needs to understand the gospel … which is far more than “Jesus died to save you from sin”. The gospel starts in Genesis 3 with sin and its impact on the race and that by nature you cannot do anything to save yourself from sin and its consequences (Hell & Punishment). Although the animal sacrificial system and the Levitical Priesthood pointed the individual to his / her sin … it could not save. Another sacrifice was needed. A pure, sinless sacrifice that was fulfilled in Jesus who is God the Son who was incarnate of the virgin Mary and took on our flesh … yet was without sin. He lived a sinless life and could offer Himself as our substitute at Calvary being punished for our sin and dying our death. On the third day He rose from the dead as promised. He took back His life gaining a great victory for all believers and guaranteeing pardon, redemption and salvation. Once a person gets to this pointe and is assured they are Born Again, they are ready to be received (inducted, initiated, baptized … confirming their faith) into the visible Body of Christ and taken into membership.

2) Onboarding … is the ongoing mentorship and discipleship … “teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you”. As I have said before, most churches fail here. Do you know that in South Africa, only 15% of businesses do “onboarding”? I think the church statistics are far less! Christian “onboarding” is taking the new convert through the Scriptures, helping them understand Christian doctrine relating to everything … such as God, Trinity, the Work of Jesus, the Work of the Spirit, the Canon of Scripture (authority, inspiration, and inerrancy), the Church, Holiness, Spiritual Gifting, Service, Evangelism, Money & Possessions, Singleness, Courting, Engagement & Marriage and many other aspects and doctrines. Spiritual Onboarding never ends. You might become mature enough to disciple others but Kingdom learning never ends!

Lord, continue to mature me for active Kingdom service, for Jesus’ sake. Amen.

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