Another sure-fire way to quash Day 1 excitement: have your new developer lose the entire day (or longer!) to setting up accounts and figuring out what software they need to install.
Yes to the fourth of our 11 Questions to a Better Developer Onboarding Program:
Do you set up a new hire’s system and accounts before they start?
Provision all of their accounts ahead of time (email, chat, NetSuite, etc). Their accounts should be ready and waiting on Day 1. Many infrastructure systems like GSuite and others offer automated cloud application account provisioning.
If you purchase a laptop for your new hire, pre-load the laptop with the applications they’ll require for their development environment. If you don’t purchase for them, make sure to send them the list of applications ahead of time so they can download and install early.
While there are many IT automation tools to help streamline this process – Virtual Machine tools like Vagrant, Containerization tools like Docker or Ansible – these tools do require significant research, management, and maintenance all their own.
Either way, document the list of applications – both the cloud applications they’ll be using and the installed applications.
Even if you’re extremely flexible about what tools developers use, you should at least have a document describing your "recommended" setup. Share that document early with new hires so they can prepare accordingly.