HR 101

But We Can Still Be Friends: Effective Offboarding

March 28, 2019

When a valued employee leaves your company, it can affect multiple people and areas within the organization. There are many moving pieces that follow an employee departure, which can cause additional stress for the manager and other employees. Using a formal offboarding process helps not only the departing employee, but their manager, their team, and the overall company culture.

Just as your onboarding program addresses all aspects of an employee joining your organization, an offboarding program addresses everything to do with employee departures—whether due to termination, resignation, layoff, or otherwise. An effective offboarding program should be a positive experience for everyone it affects, and like an onboarding program, should be formal, consistent, and supported with adequate resources.

Offboarding means effectively closing out the employment relationship with a departing employee. Without a structured process, you’re more likely to forget crucial items and tasks, such as advising IT to cancel the employee’s access to accounts, servers, and other secured parts of the workplace. Offboarding also helps you address the impact a departing employee can have on their colleagues. Depending on the situation, co-workers could feel hurt, or morale can be damaged, if the exit is not properly communicated.

Implementing a formal offboarding process can ensure that administrative tasks, knowledge transfer, appropriate communication, and a positive lasting impression are achieved. When these items are not handled properly, departing employees might reveal their negative experiences on social media, among other negative repercussions. These aspects can be costly to future recruitment, retention efforts, or even growth of the business.

You seldom want to see employees go, but it’s unfortunately going to happen. Handling it appropriately will benefit your team and help keep your company culture intact. Download our FREE Effective Offboarding Guide, which discusses how a well-thought-out offboarding process can have a positive effect on the whole organization.

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