How to Manage the Employee Offboarding Process

The Employee Offboarding Experience is a Natural Part of Business

When an employee departs your company they have more influence than you might think. From sharing their experience on Glassdoor and LinkedIn to coming back as a contractor or even a client, it’s important that this influence is taken seriously by ensuring a productive and positive goodbye.

A formal and carefully managed offboarding process will ensure that employees depart with dignity and good grace and have only good things to say about you. Of course, employees may depart under a range of different circumstances, but this article will look at the offboarding process for an employee who has simply decided to move on to pastures new.

Dealing With the Formalities

When an employee departs they will usually hand in a letter of resignation. On receipt of their resignation you will need to notify HR and inform them of the employee’s proposed last day. HR may correct this date if necessary.

For example, some more senior employees may need to work a notice period of up to six months. The employee will usually need to meet with HR to discuss contractual obligations and elements such as retirement plans, benefits, final pay and any relevant departure policies such as an NDA. Putting it in writing can help protect your organization from unemployment claims or other discrepancies moving forward.

Handling Departure Logistics

Once a departure date has been set it’s time to set the logistical wheels in motion. This will involve a number of departments collaborating, including payroll, IT and building security managers. IT and security are important, especially in light of recent research that revealed that 89 percent of departed employees were still able to access company software systems.

Creating a Smooth Transition Plan

In addition to creating a smooth transition for the employee, it’s also essential that appropriate stakeholders are notified of the employee’s departure. This might involve ensuring any unfinished work is distributed to colleagues or completed before departure. The employee will also need to make the manager aware of any emails, files, or records that need actioning or archiving before they depart.

A Fond Farewell

Goodbyes are always sad, and that is often the case when an employee leaves, especially if they have been working for the company for a long time. Schedule a final exit meeting to cover any last formalities or feedback, and then arrange a team lunch or similar social gathering to say goodbye with a smile.

After all, you never know if or when your paths may cross again.


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