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Although it can seem overwhelming — especially for those of us at small companies where identity and access management is just one of the many hats we wear — employee onboarding in Google Workspace can be a breeze, even if you’re not a tech guru. The key is knowing where to start.

In this guide, we’ll walk you through the step-by-step process of setting up new employee accounts, configuring email, and granting access to essential apps within Google Workspace. We’ll also cover common challenges and provide tips for simplifying the process, including how to leverage tools like YeshID to make things even smoother.

Step 1: Set Up a New Employee Account

The first step in onboarding a new employee is to set up a new employee account in Google Workspace. It’s worth noting here that we are assuming you have Google Super Admin access, which is a prerequisite for completing the tasks below.

It’s a good idea to do this a couple of days before the employee’s start date to ensure that other applications can be provisioned smoothly. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Email address: By creating a Google Workspace account, you’re giving the employee an identity within your company, which is centered around their email address.
  • Password management: You’ll need to create a password for them, which you should send them and save so they can access their account on the first day.
  • Security: To enhance security, force the new employee to change their password upon the first login and strongly consider enabling two-factor authentication (2FA). This will grant them access to Google systems like Calendar, Mail, and more.

Step 2: Grant Access to Google Groups and Organizations

Next, ensure that the new employee has access to the right email groups and is placed in the appropriate organizational units, or orgs, within Google Workspace. While this process may be manual, you can often use the profile of another user with a similar role as a reference to determine which groups and orgs to assign.

Step 3: Provide Access to Birthright Apps

Birthright apps are the applications that every employee should have access to, such as Slack, documentation systems (e.g., Notion or Confluence), and HR applications. To grant access to these apps:

  • Go into each application and provide access to the new email address you created for the employee.
  • Sometimes, you may need to coordinate with other departments to ensure access is granted appropriately.

Step 4: Track Access and Compliance

Whether you handle app provisioning yourself or someone else does it, it’s crucial to keep track of the apps you’ve granted access to for three key reasons:

  • Offboarding: When an employee leaves the company, you can easily revoke their access to applications. 
  • Cost control: Tracking app access helps you manage licenses efficiently, saving your company money.
  • Compliance: Compliance requirements often demand proof of access, so having a record is essential.

Many companies without a full HR or IT department might track this information in a spreadsheet or company wiki that needs to be manually updated and kept private. It’s a lot to manage, but by implementing these best practices today, you set yourself up for success tomorrow. 

Simplify Onboarding with YeshID

There are options that don’t involve doing all of this manually: GAM, Bettercloud, Okta, and Ping are a few. The problem though is that for most small businesses, these products are overkill. They are expensive and time-consuming to implement — especially when what you really need is just to get people to work using solid best practices, not advanced technology. 

YeshID Onboard provides an option for smaller companies that have embarked on their identity and access management journeys but aren’t in a place yet where they need a very technical (or expensive) solution. We provide a quick and easy way to streamline onboarding today while setting up the foundational best practices we outlined in this guide. Benefits include:

  • Schedule onboarding: YeshID allows you to schedule onboarding tasks. An email is automatically sent to the user on their start date, and their account is provisioned immediately to kickstart the application license process.
  • Create templates for departments: Create templates for different departments to automate the assignment of groups and orgs, reducing manual work.
  • Implement passwordless security: Enhance security by utilizing YeshID’s passwordless authentication method.
  • Manage application provisioning: Manage the application provisioning process through YeshID’s task management system. Assign administrators for each application, and they’ll receive notifications for when to provision access.
  • Compliance management: YeshID serves as a central source of truth for access management, making it easy to demonstrate compliance when needed.

Streamlining employee onboarding in Google Workspace doesn’t have to be a daunting task. With the right approach and tools like YeshID Onboard, you can efficiently manage the process and ensure that new employees have the access they need from day one.

Try Onboard. The first 100 people to join will get access to better onboarding and offboarding for free today and early access to future product updates.