The exit interview is an integral component of your employer brand and talent acquisition process. It’s your opportunity to obtain information about what your organization is doing well and what your organization needs to do to improve.
Exit interviews are commonly performed in person with the departing employee. Sometimes, the manager conducts the exit interview, but most often, a Human Resources staff person holds the exit interview. Used in conjunction with video technology, exit interviews can provide a rich source of information for talent management and organizational improvement.
The key to conducting an effective exit interview is to create an environment in which the exiting employee is comfortable providing honest feedback. Your organization needs to assure the employee that no negative consequences will result from honest discussion during the exit interview. Video can help tremendously with this because it eliminates the pressure of voicing their opinions face to face.
Feedback, though illuminating, is not useful from just one exit interview. Only speaking with all departing employees will allow you to identify trends that point to chronic or systemic weaknesses in the company’s retention management. For this reason, it is important to design effective exit-interview protocols and administer them consistently.
Once the interview has been designed, it is important to not keep changing the questions. This will help assure that the data received is reliable. Using video interviews instead of a face-to-face interview ensures that the exact same questions will be asked in the exact same way every time. Standardized questions allow companies to make fair comparisons and detect patterns.
Unfortunately, if you are learning improvement ideas or employee concerns at the exit interview, it is often too late to take action to improve or help the exiting employee. The best time for an employee to discuss concerns, dissatisfactions and suggestions with his employer is while s/he is a committed employee and not on the way out the door.
Your organization should conduct interviews with current employees to obtain an understanding of the positive aspects of employment with your organization. You will want to use the information that you receive in the periodic interviews to retain critical employees and improve your workplace. Make sure your organization provides multiple opportunities to gather and learn from honest employee feedback, including surveys, department meetings, comment or suggestion forms, and more.
You will empower your employees and boost your retention rates by soliciting feedback and using that data to inform organizational change.