11 January 2022

Why it’s Time to Prioritise Your Employee Exit Experience

Senior Strategist, Bethany Mullett, shares why crafting an exit strategy is an important part of the employee experience.

As we exit one year and start another year, it got us thinking about an often-forgotten area of the employee experience – offboarding or alumni!  

In a nutshell, offboarding is the area of experience that focuses on employees leaving a business. It can be tricky for HR teams to prioritise as there will always be other areas demanding attention that touch existing employees – attraction and retention will forever be of vital importance.  

However, generational trends and predictions tell us that shorter tenures and increased mobility are rising. Millennials have earned a job-hopping reputation, being 3x more likely to move year on year than non-millennial counterparts (that’s a nice way of saying ‘older’), and Gen-Z are following in their footsteps.  

LinkedIn CEO, Ryan Roslansky, has also been keeping an eye on this, he told Time Magazine 

“The global workforce is changing. I talked about how we see a 54% increase year over year in job transitions across the platform. When you look at Gen Z specifically, that number’s up 80% year over year, when you look at millennials that number is up 50% year over year, when you look at Gen X, that number’s up 31% year over year. When you look at boomers that number’s only up 5% year over year.” 

Beyond generations, with the great resignation and remote working, it’s now easier than ever for employees to move their talent elsewhere.   

So, with shorter tenures on the rise, we feel it’s time for all businesses to dust the cobwebs off their offboarding experience and consider an exit strategy fit for purpose. How can employers craft that exit experience, and ensure the door remains open for top talent to boomerang back into our worlds?  

3 Tips to crafting an exit experience  

As new generations enter the workplace and the upward trend of shorter tenures set to continue, the challenge of retaining and engaging top talent becomes ever more urgent, we must also accept that some talent loss is inevitable. In these circumstances, we can work towards creating space, opportunity, and motive for top talent to come back into our organisations – with even more knowledge, skills, and experience to offer.  

TOP TIP #1 – Define and refine  

What does it look like now and what should it be? Does it align with your values?  

  • This is an employee’s final part of their journey with you (for now) and all the best bits of your culture should shine bright throughout the formal and informal processes of employee exit (regretted and non-regretted!) 
  • From employee listening and the handover, to the hr notification and final payslip, every touchpoint across your exit experience is an employer brand opportunity 
  • A positive and memorable experience will help ensure your exiting colleague is a potential boomerang and brand ambassador  

TOP TIP #2 – Celebrate and appreciate 

When your exit and recognition strategies overlap! How are you celebrating your exiting employees’ achievements?  

  • Shouting about the contributions they have made throughout their tenure, colleagues contribution stories and bringing together their accomplishments is a magic moment in an employee exit. Ensure that the door you leave open is one coloured with thank yous!  
  • This can work both ways too, with your employee sharing their highlights and growth journey
  • Recognition doesn’t have to end on the final day of employment either, if your organisation/team achieves something that the leaver was part of a note of acknowledgement, credit in an award announcement or public shout out will go a long way  

TOP TIP #3 – Stay connected and open doors 

  • Creating an alumni network doesn’t have to be resource-intensive. Just putting some effort into a space where alumni employees can stay in touch, hear news, contribute ideas and access benefits will pay dividends. For example, you could invite them to an internal training course that doesn’t have capacity limitations.
  • This is where you have the opportunity to keep your organisation within your leavers’ line of sight, highlight return opportunities and keep in touch with their journeys post-departure.
  • Interact with your employee’s successes online, keep supporting them even if they don’t work within your organisation at the moment. 

How can you make it happen? 

You can deploy the experts to help you along the way. We can help you navigate the world of employee exits. 

Our team of employee engagement strategists and behavioural scientists have got plentiful experience, rich ideas and a passion to create impactful exit experiences, whatever stage you’re at. So, get in touch to speak to one of our team today to find out more.  

Remember, good exit experiences don’t happen by accident. Intentional and purposeful effort goes into creating and maintaining them. Start to see each exit as an opportunity to show care, celebrate and reinforce company culture and who knows, maybe you’ll be welcoming that employee back again before you know it!  

Bethany headshot

Bethany Mullett
Senior Strategist
Connect with me on LinkedIn


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