Get paid up to $18,750 for your referral to ExtensisHR!   Start Referral Close

Why Employee Offboarding Is as Important as Onboarding

Quick look: With voluntary resignations and quiet quitting still on the rise, retaining valuable employees has become as important as recruiting them. However, when the time comes to inevitably part ways, it’s best to prioritize offboarding to protect how your company fares in the future.

Creating an optimal employee experience shouldn’t end after a hire has been made. Companies regularly invest thousands of dollars on recruiting efforts in order to put their best foot forward. Yet, the opposite is often true once an employee decides to leave.

When this happens, it can feel disappointing and frustrating, especially if the departure is unexpected. Managing production for scalability as a small- and medium-sized business (SMB) is always a delicate balance, one that’s easily disrupted when even a single person resigns.

However, a company’s last impression should be as favorable as its first, which is why enlisting a PEO partner to help with offboarding is important. If your company does not currently have a solid process in place, here are reasons why it deserves a second look.

Leave the door open for boomerang employees

People switch jobs more frequently now than in generations past. In fact, 61% of employees are considering voluntarily resigning their roles in 2023, which means companies need to properly prepare for these exits. Although, not all departing employees realize the dream job they envisioned. Therefore, it’s not uncommon for people to re-engage with their former employers.

In fact, research shows 43% of people who quit their jobs during the pandemic miss their old positions, and one in five have boomeranged back to the company they left. Parting on good terms is beneficial for SMB leaders as there are advantages to re-hiring former employers. They likely need less time to fully integrate into the company and the current flow of work. It can also provide a retention boost to see a familiar face returning to the company.

Maintain a positive online reputation

In addition to anticipating boomerang employees, SMBs should also consider their company’s reputation. Social media isn’t limited to the mindless scroll of the latest TikTok or Instagram craze. It’s also a hotbed of information for job seekers.

LinkedIn and review sites like Glassdoor are typically the first places potential applicants visit to learn about a company. A poor offboarding experience can lead to negative reviews and overall perception which can have a residual impact on a company’s reputation.  86% say they research company reviews when deciding where to apply for a job, and well over half of both men (67%) and women (86%) say they wouldn’t join a company with a bad reputation.

Therefore, it can be detrimental to burn bridges by not taking the time to give respected employees the send-off they deserve. Furthermore, former employees can be assets when recommending the company to new hires or clients. Many who leave a company may have simply found growth opportunities elsewhere but otherwise enjoyed their experience. It would be unfortunate to ruin it for them right at the end.

Uphold company core values

When employees leave a company, their co-workers are on alert. The way business leaders react to resignations will reflect what comes next. It’s best to honor core values to preserve company culture and prevent an onslaught of resignations and/or employee disengagement to follow. 

Part of creating an offboarding process is to minimize disruption for the employees who remain. They are the ones dealing with the loss of a team member, while also juggling an additional workload until a new hire is made. Being amicable throughout the exit process can help keep the transition as smooth as possible for all those involved.

Handling employee offboarding effectively

Not every employee exit is ideal, but working with a PEO partner to put an offboarding plan in place can help make the transition more seamless. Here are a few action items to help preserve institutional knowledge, identify areas for improvement, and maintain healthy professional relationships.

Create a transition template

One of the biggest challenges when an employee leaves is transferring information to other team members. Create a transition template for exiting employees to share their projects, client contacts, and other pertinent details relating to their work processes. Also, make sure you have full access to all files and passwords before the employee turns over any company equipment.

Conduct an exit interview

Employees who leave on good terms are usually more comfortable with sharing constructive feedback and setting their colleagues up for success. An exit interview can give employers a better idea of where to improve and what they’re doing well. It can also shed light on areas in need of resources or additional training to empower the next person who takes on the role.

Make it a fond farewell

Maintaining professional relationships is important because there may be an opportunity to cross paths again. In many ways, former employees can be your biggest advocates, so share appreciation for their contributions and wish them well on their next venture. Keep them part of your broad network because their offboarding may only signify a temporary end.

End on a good note with the support of a PEO

Saying goodbye to an employee can be a challenging time. Unfortunately, operations can’t be placed on hold because someone leaves. Having the support of a PEO partner helps to alleviate offboarding pressure and responsibilities. To ensure the transition is as seamless as possible, ExtensisHR can:

  • Conduct exit interviews and gather insights to inform future processes
  • Maintain compliance throughout the termination (even if an employee is leaving voluntarily)
  • Implement HR tools to preserve employee records for potential rehires
  • Revise retention strategies to improve the employee experience

These are part of a comprehensive suite of PEO services which can be tailored to fit your company’s specific needs. In addition to recruiting and retention, ExtensisHR focuses on benefits administration, risk and compliance services, and the implementation of digital technology to streamline all HR processes.

Employee resignations are inevitable but working with an experienced PEO partner can help you feel better prepared. Want to optimize your offboarding process? Our team of HR experts is here to help. Contact ExtensisHR today.

Back to Top

Our expert advice, direct to your inbox.