Five ways to make employee exits memorable – for the right reasons

Reputation is what people say about you when you’re not in the room. When employees leave they can be free to say whatever they want about your organisation, from chatting in the pub or to their professional network, to more formal ways to give an opinion such as Glassdoor and Indeed.

If we accept that the end of a working relationship is just as important as the start, how can you leave a lasting impression on people who are leaving your organisation? Here are five practical steps you can take.

Step 1: Carry out exit questionnaires

Finding out what people really think about working for your organisation – the positives and the negatives – is incredibly valuable.

Questionnaires can provide a unique chance to gauge the opinions of departing employees and often include more constructive and objective criticism than existing staff are prepared to give in employee engagement surveys.

An experienced HR person is best placed to take the employee through the questionnaire, as the leaver needs to feel comfortable giving feedback about their manager and team. The important thing is to ensure that the results are analysed and used, as failure to listen and act can be a huge mistake.

Step 2: Follow up with exit interview

 Exit interviews go one step further than the questionnaires, giving the leaver the opportunity to highlight concerns and give feedback in person, giving examples to back up their views. This helps the company look at specific issues and it is important to reassure the individual this is the reason for the interview.

The key to getting value from exit interviews is making sure you listen not challenge, judge or defend. The interviewer must remain impartial and ask open questions to get the leaver to fully explain their opinions and while avoiding any confrontation.

These interviews can be time-consuming so often they get forgotten or dropped in the list of priorities but with the growing popularity of sites like and reviews now available on Indeed and Google, the impact of not taking the time could be a negative review which puts off potential employees.

 Step 3: Give them a good send off

Encourage managers to give their leavers a good send off.  People spend a long time at work developing relationships you want them to leave on a positive note with good memories of their time with your business.

Leaving is a great opportunity to say thank you to someone for the work they have done and how they have contributed to the business.  So often, managers get this wrong and the last day can feel awkward and uncomfortable. It’s the best time to do something personal with a card/gift you know they will like so find the right person to buy their gift.

 Step 4: Allow them to say goodbye to colleagues

 Whether people are leaving to go pastures new, as a result of a restructure or even a performance issue they usually want to be able to say goodbye to their colleagues. Allowing them to do this professionally will support their positive memories despite any difficulties or frustrations they have around the decision.  Allow them the time to go around and see colleagues to say goodbye and let them know that this is okay.

 Step 5: Support those who need it with their next steps

For those who don’t have a new role to go to, offer support to help them navigate their next steps.  Provide them with personalised options of support to help think through their career planning or retirement planning through outplacement support.  This can be your final handshake as you part company and doesn’t have to cost the earth.


Interested in finding out more about making your employee more memorable?  Talk to Jem Associates to find out about our exceptional outplacement support services at


Why a good end to an employment relationship is just as important as a good beginning

In any business, building good employee relationships is vital to success. But just like a book which starts brilliantly, you don’t want to be disappointed by a poor ending to the story – the same is true about relationships with employees.

With the workforce becoming increasingly choosey about which organisations they want to work for, ending a working relationship with respect and care is a great way to maintain the good reputation you have worked so hard to build, as well as to provide your employees with skills and options for their next step.

What is outplacement?

Outplacement is a sensitive and professional way to end your business’s relationship with employees. It doesn’t matter whether you have to make people redundant due to business change, are supporting employees with long service about to retire, or whether you have someone who just no longer fits into a role in your organisation and you are parting ways, outplacement ensures you end the relationship as well as you started.

Outplacement can set you apart, marking out your organisation as one which continually invests in its people and is not only interested in what it can get out of them while at work. Investing in outplacement support balances the needs of both business and individual, and can help to ensure a good quality ending for both parties.

Business benefits of outplacement

For the business, providing this crucial support can help protect your reputation and brand.  It reduces the risk that leavers will leave with feelings of resentment resulting in negative word of mouth.

It also minimises the chance of negative comments about the organisation on social media and on sites like Glassdoor and Jobcrowd, along with potentially severe damage to the company’s employer brand and reputation.

Providing outplacement support also sends a positive message to those who remain in employment about the way people are treated during change.

Outplacement benefits for your employees

Outplacement is a critical support service for many people leaving organisations. It provides information and support to help them think about their next career steps.

The best outplacement includes personalised coaching sessions to give the individual have the time and space to work out their next steps, along with helping them navigate the emotions they experience during change.

The competitive edge of a good ending

Interestingly not many organisations have recognised how important this part of the relationship with an employee is – many invest heavily in recruitment and induction training at the outset of the relationship but are yet to see the benefits focusing on a good ending to the relationship can have as well.

Business change is inevitable but what sets some organisations apart is the investment in giving employees a good ending to their employment experience with them. These organisations act with integrity and do the right thing to help their people transition through the change, support them to move onto the next chapter of their life and enable them to leave with a positive memory of their experience at their organisation.

This means that, given the opportunity, people may choose to rejoin the organisation should a suitable role become available. It also sends the right signals to other potential applicants about a company which values its people as an asset not just while they are being productive, but at the end of a working relationship too.

Interested in making sure your employees have a positive experience at the end of their time with your business?  Talk Jem Associates to find out about our outplacement support services at

Improve Team Performance Through MBTI

MBTI is the Myers Briggs Type Indicator, a personality questionnaire that helps people to understand how they work and gives them insight into how others work.

It’s an effective team building tool, introducing a number of preferred ways of working.  There is no ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ and no style is better than another – all have their strengths and their potential blind spots.

The approach allows teams to focus on how they can work well together.

Thinking of using MBTI to understand more about how you and your team work together?
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What’s MBTI? – Find out more here