Field Guide to the Perfect Custom Onboarding Gifts

Something that we are asked about on a daily basis, from every industry and every region is: “what are the new best onboarding gifts?”

The purpose of a custom branded onboarding gift is to get someone started in an organization, on a team with a feeling of excitement, team loyalty and engagement and appreciation. These feelings are extremely important. A new employee with these feelings works harder, stays longer, takes fewer days off, loves their job and doesn’t create water-cooler drama.

Richard Branson said, “Train people well enough so they can leave, treat them well enough, so they don’t want to.” This also applies to how you treat your employees from the beginning. Many clients struggle with spending money on gifts for employees they don’t know will stick around. Hiring itself is hard. But, treating people like they will stay from their first interview will help ensure they do stay.

So, getting the right onboarding gift is a lot of pressure on the buyer. If it’s your job to pick out these gifts, we’re here to help.

Product 1: The OGIO Apex Slim MessengerScreen Shot 2019-02-28 at 2.38.35 PM

This bag is at a great price point. Starting at $40 including embroidery and shipping, these are affordable for nearly all onboarding programs. They are slim and easily stored.

The minimum order quantity is only 25, you won’t have a ton to store.

One of my favorite ways to use this bag in a program is to stuff it with all the necessary paperwork, manuals, and office supplies (lanyards, pens, journals) so that when someone does get hired, the bag can just be pulled out of a closet and given to the new employee.

Product 2: The Wireless Charging Desk Organizer

Getting a desk organizer as an onboarding gift may seem like giving your wife a vacuum for her birthday. But, experience has shown that a new employee is really excited to do their new job and do it well.

Screen Shot 2019-02-27 at 9.09.32 AM

It’s more akin to back to school shopping. Remember that feeling? The new pencils and pens and notebooks. The new backpack and shoes. It was a feeling of pure excitement and confidence. That’s the feeling we want to encourage in our new employees.

Wireless charging is still relatively new. So, this may be the first wireless charger your employee receives. And, it’s even cooler because it’s representative of their successes, their ambitions, their new start at your company, on your team…and it is branded with your logo.

The minimum order quantity for the branded wireless charging desk organizer is 25 at $22 each. It’s one of the least expensive wireless chargers that I’ve tried. And, it’s a multitasker!

Product 3: The FujiFlilm Instax Mini 9 Instant Camera

This camera comes in lots of colors, we can decorate, but it’s just as meaningful without a logo. Screen Shot 2019-02-28 at 3.06.39 PM

Something fun goes a long way with new employees (and those of us who have some dust on our shoulders). The nostalgia of an instant camera and the ability to hold a physical product (the photo) is extremely satisfying. It’s probably been 10 years since I’ve last held a photo. But, my sister got one of these for my mom and it’s my family’s new obsession. When my daughter visits her, she uses all the film on pictures of the cat.

From us, these items are $100 undecorated, shipping is always free, with a minimum order quantity of 25. It has a fairly high price point, but it can replace the branded headphones that you used to buy. This camera is fresher and more modern, more special than headphones. When you’re competing to win and keep employees, you need an edge. A retro edge.

Product 4: The Smart Plug with 2 USP Ports

Modern gifts are also really popular right now. I have an Echo in two rooms in my house, smart lightbulbs in nearly every light socket and smart plugs connected to space heaters and coffee makers and curling irons. This smart plug is more unique and more functional with USB ports.

Screen Shot 2019-02-28 at 3.36.05 PMImagine if your employees can safely heat their homes with space heaters, turning them off and on per their fluctuating schedule…without wasting power or fear of a fire. And, with very little evening prep, they can have the Folgers commercial experience, waking up to the smell of brewing coffee. With a smart plug, they can.

A smart home has so many benefits. I love being able to turn on lights when I’m traveling, keeping my home safer. I love making sure my curling iron is turned off when I’m 5 miles from my house, just with an app on my phone.

The Smart Plug with 2 USP Ports has a much larger branding opportunity that the standard, one-plug options. With a full color imprint, these run $31 a piece at 12 pieces…less with a larger order.

Product 5: Strideline Premium Socks (Business)

I love socks. I love coziness. And, I love something sassy. Socks, like these, have HUGE branding opportunity. The area is big, the multitude of colors and customization is really unmatched in the promotional merchandise world for something so functional. Socks are the new water bottle. Since we all gave out over a dozen styles of custom water bottles over the last two years, this year we are giving away socks. They come in so many styles and lengths that they’re right for everyone.

My favorite are the business socks, but the low and crew styles are extremely popular. The price point on these range from $9-$13 a pair at the lowest quantities (50 pairs). For more custom socks, reach out to us on our chat and we can help. There are so many options for socks, that putting them all on the coolperx would be nearly overwhelming. So, we have put up our top sellers.

Socks are easily packed, easily stored, can have the team colors, the company colors, different logos…what’s not to love about these? These definitely scream “WELCOME TO OUR TEAM!”

For any other branded onboarding gift ideas, search coolperx or email us at We love brainstorming this stuff!

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