Hiring new employees in Texas is a fairly straightforward process when you’re the employee. New hires are used to being confronted with a stack of first-day paperwork to read and sign. But what they don’t see is the multiple layers of Texas hiring compliance, data input, reporting, and double-checking that HR departments do to make the hire official.
Download The Ultimate New Hire Paperwork Checklist
It takes a lot of precious time and effort to ensure you have all the right forms ready for your new employee and are prepared for their first day of work. To help you get clear and organized with your Texas employee onboarding, we’ve combined essential hiring and onboarding resources in this guide and made them specific to the Lone Star State.
Get ready to hire with confidence with these Texas onboarding tips, forms, and compliance requirements. Read our HR Compliance Guide to learn more.
Texas New Hire Paperwork
Texas new hire paperwork is similar to that of other states. Here’s a list of forms you will need to share with your new employee:
I-9 Employment Eligibility Form (to be signed and returned)
W-4 Federal Tax Withholding Form (to be signed and returned)
Notice of Worker’s Compensation Coverage (for reference only)
Worker’s Compensation Claim Form DWC Form 1-S (for reference only)
Voluntary Self-Identification of Disability Form CC-305 (if company does business with the government)
In addition, many companies may provide optional company-specific documentation. Examples include:
Employee handbook acknowledgment
Consent for a background check
Consent for a drug/alcohol test
Video surveillance policy
Each of these forms should be completed by the employee’s start date.
HR Priorities Before Day 1
Once a candidate accepts your offer, HR isn’t just playing the waiting game. There are several steps you need to take to prepare for your new employee’s arrival. In addition to gathering copies of the above Texas new hire paperwork, do the following to create a smoother, streamlined first-day experience.
1. Set up payroll.
If you offer direct deposit, you will need to provide a direct deposit authorization form to your new employee. You may be able to input your employee in your payroll system before Day 1 as far as assigning payroll IDs, but you will need their Texas new hire paperwork to complete the process.
2. Prepare a benefits package.
If you offer insurance or other company benefits, pull all this information together into a first-day packet. Make sure you have documents that spell out what benefits the employee is eligible for, when they’re eligible for them, and how they can take advantage of them.
3. Collect access cards, codes, and related items.
Showing your new hires that you’ve been actively preparing for and anticipating them is a sincere form of flattery. One easy way to do this is to start collecting all the things they will need to seamlessly begin working. Things like access cards, codes, keys, uniforms, and equipment should be available to hand over to them during onboarding. It proves you already consider them a valuable part of the team instead of treating them like an afterthought.
Complying with Texas State Employment Standards
The state of Texas requires employees to post several labor-related posters and notices within their facilities (in addition to federal labor posters). These should be placed in areas where they can be easily viewed by employees, such as break rooms or common areas. Required posters in Texas include:
Texas Payday Law Poster (Spanish optional)
Unemployment & Payday Law Poster (Spanish optional)
Worker’s Comp posters
Employer’s Notice of Ombudsman Program
Earned Income Tax Credit materials
Public employers (such as Workforce Solutions Offices) may be required to post additional posters, including:
You Have the Right to Not Remain Silent
Worker Right to Know Notice
Job Service Complaint System
In addition, employers may choose to post the following optional posters:
The Law in Texas (information on Equal Employment Opportunity law)
Child Labor Law in Texas Poster
Are You Owed Wages? Poster (information on filing a wage claim)
Find a complete list of posters here.
Texas Payroll & Tax Reporting Requirements
To maintain hiring compliance, HR must report all news within 20 days of their start day. Texas uses an online reporting portal, which you can access here. Alternatively, you can mail your new hire report submission to:
ENHR Operations Center
P.O. Box 149224
Austin, TX 78714-9224
The new hire report must include the employee’s legal first and last name, employee home address, employee date of birth, social security number, salary frequency, and the official start date. You can use this form to complete the process.
When reporting and paying payroll taxes for new hires, you can follow the federal schedule for employment taxes.
Additional Texas Onboarding Tips
A first day of work filled with nothing but paperwork and procedures doesn’t do much to build excitement for the employee. In between legalities and compliance, take the opportunity to give your new hires a great experience and get them excited for what’s to come.
Create a first-day onboarding kit.
You can help your employees get engaged when you have less “grunt work” and details to worry about. Make things easier on everyone (including yourself) by creating a first-day onboarding kit. This should be a collection of all the required paperwork and policies, company tools and equipment, a letter from the CEO, a first-day gift, and anything else you might otherwise spend time trying to chase down once your employee arrives.
Then, try to systematize your first-day preparations to streamline this process even more. Make checklists of all the things you need to do to get ready to welcome new employees. Using automation tools like HR software can help by saving reusable templates and storing important documents in a single place.
Give a heads-up to the new hire’s team.
Your new hire’s team and manager will also want to get involved in shaping their first-day experience. Let everyone know you’ve filled the position so they can start preparing workspaces and planning to integrate them into projects. Share some information about the candidate’s interests and experiences. They may even arrange to make an introduction before the first day to take off some of the pressure.
Assign a mentor.
Mentors are an integral part of every professional’s success. Pick someone in your company who can be a resource to your new hire. This should be a person who is well informed of the company’s culture and policies, excels at their job, and can offer guidance and insight to make your new hire feel at home and confident.
Send out a company-wide introduction.
Every successful new hire is something to celebrate! Share the moment with the rest of the company so they can all take part in making your new employees feel welcome.
Take an office tour.
Office tours aren’t just formalities. They let new hires see departments and people they might not otherwise see and help them get a feel for the company culture by getting the full picture.
Treat your new hires to a first-day lunch.
Hosting a lunch for your new employees on Day 1 is a great way to pause the paperwork and gauge how they’re feeling about their experience so far. You can also invite managers, leaders, and their team members to help your new hires network and start feeling like part of the team.
How GoCo Supports Texas Employee Onboarding
Hiring in the state of Texas shares a lot of similarities with other states, but there are differences, too. Keeping track of all the reporting requirements, forms, and resources is easier when you have purpose-built HR software at your fingertips.
At GoCo, we developed our all-in-one HR software to streamline the complexities of hiring compliance, payroll and reporting, and paperwork. We’ve infused state-specific resources into the process to remove the guesswork when it comes to employment forms, payroll taxes, benefits, and eligibility. For instance, GoCo tracks all forms and documentation for workers in Texas so that no form falls through the cracks.
HRs can also leverage turnkey automation workflows to present employees with Texas new hire paperwork in a streamlined manner. Employees can complete all the paperwork online while you track their progress and collect and store their digital forms when they’re done. Plus, tax withholdings calculations are also automated so you can stay compliant with local, state, and federal laws.
What’s more, GoCo stays up-to-date on evolving state and federal regulations that may impact your hiring and onboarding processes. We are continually updating our software as new forms and requirements become available.
Dig yourself out of the paperwork pit and have more time to invest in creating a powerful first-day experience. Contact us today to see how GoCo can become a valuable hiring and onboarding partner.