BPHR’s Director Lisa Salcido, SPHR, SHRM-SCP provides answers to your pressing HR questions.
Question: I have an employee resigning in two weeks. How do I conduct an exit interview?
Answer: Conducting an effective exit interview can provide insight into where your company needs improvement to reduce turnover. This is a rare opportunity to hear honest feedback. Even if you think you know why your employee is leaving, you’d be surprised what an exit interview can uncover.
Schedule an in-person meeting with the departing employee at the end of their notice period, such as the morning of their last day. An experienced interviewer like HR, or a Manager that did not directly supervise the employee, should conduct the exit interview. Meet in a confidential space and encourage an open, productive conversation where the employee can be candid. Advise the employee that you wish to gather information about their experience working for the company and why they have chosen to leave.
Your discussion should cover several areas of the employment experience: orientation/onboarding process, training, management and other working relationships, compensation and benefits, working conditions and culture. You may be able to immediately apply some feedback to increase productivity in the departing employee’s position. Of course, if the employee mentions hostility or harassment issues you will need to address it as any other complaint and fully investigate.
Take notes during each exit interview so you can look for patterns. What you do with the information discovered during an exit interview is vital to making your organization stronger. Commit to using the constructive feedback to improve your workplace and increase job satisfaction. End the exit interview meeting on a positive note by thanking your employee for their participation and honesty. Share the employee’s good and bad experiences with your management team and discuss actions that can improve retention.
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It’s easy to get caught up in day-to-day tasks and overlook opportunities that may ultimately improve your organization. With BPHR, you have an HR Generalist on your side to help and guide you so you can take a more proactive and strategic approach to growing your business.
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Have a question for Lisa? Email her directly.