17 Synonyms for “Onboarding”

The term “onboarding” is a common business phrase that refers to the process of familiarizing new recruits with their work environment.

It’s certainly the most popular phrase to describe this process, but that may render it a bit overused by now.

Fear not – we’ve compiled a list of synonyms for this phrase to broaden your vocabulary and keep things interesting!

Onboarding Synonyms

  • Organizational socialization
  • Show the ropes
  • Induction
  • In-house training
  • Enrollment
  • Orientation
  • Integrating
  • Incorporating
  • Enlistment
  • Recruitment
  • Admission
  • Employment
  • Engagement
  • Training
  • Assimilating
  • Acclimating
  • Familiarizing


  • “Onboarding” is the correct phrase to use to refer to the process of training and orienting new staff at the workplace.
  • Another way to say “onboarding” in formal circumstances is “organizational socialization.”
  • In informal settings, you can refer to the process of onboarding as to “show the ropes.”

Stay right there! In the next section, we’ll discuss our choice of formal and informal synonyms for “onboarding.” Moreover, we’ll provide some examples.

After that, we’ll discuss the correctness of this term.

Organizational Socialization (Formal)

If you’re looking for a professional way to say “onboarding,” let us introduce you to a phrase that we totally knew about before today – “organizational socialization.”

Essentially, this phrase refers to the process by which new employees develop the skills and knowledge necessary for their new role. Therefore, it’s really just an extra fancy way to talk about “onboarding.”

Additionally, “onboarding” is an equally effective term to talk about this process, but if you’re looking to sound extra snazzy and businesslike, you can employ this alternative.

Finally, let’s see how this phrase would look in an email example:

Dear Ralph,

I wanted to report on the outcome of our organizational socialization project here in the office.

The new staff members appear to have completely integrated, so the project appears to be a success.

Analise Redding

Show the Ropes (Informal)

“Show the ropes” is a great informal synonym for “onboarding,” as it describes the process whereby an employee is trained or familiarized with their new workplace.

Firstly, as this phrase is rather idiomatic, we wouldn’t recommend using it when speaking to superiors or a client. However, it is suitable to use in the workplace when the culture of the workplace allows for it or when you have a close relationship with your coworkers.

Secondly, “onboarding,” while jargon, is not an especially formal phrase, so it can be used in more casual correspondence as well. Nonetheless, it never hurts to switch up your phrasing from time to time!

Lastly, let’s see how this phrase might be used in a couple of examples:

Feel free to email me if you have any questions, but Caitlin is our top vendor and will show you the ropes for your first day.

I’m going to show our new trainees the ropes at the Louisiana office today.

Is It Correct to Say “Onboarding”?

The term “onboarding” is the correct terminology, and it is frequently used in the workplace to refer to the process of acclimating an employee or new staff to their workspace.

It is also possible to onboard a client or a vendor for a certain project.

Therefore, while our list of synonyms may help you if you are ever looking for another word for “onboarding,” the original term is perfectly effective in its own right.

The final question you may be asking is whether “onboarding” should be hyphenated and written as “on-boarding.”

In short, this version of the term is incorrect. “Onboarding” is just one word, and the hyphen should be dropped in practice. Therefore, although you may see this version of the phrase used from time to time, it should be avoided.

We hope you’ve taken all this information on board! If you find our list of synonyms helpful, go ahead and bookmark this page to keep them at your disposal.