The exit interview is a process that is encouraged by most companies so that they can have a better understanding of the reason for which an employee is leaving the firm.
In today’s scenario, individuals are voluntarily quitting their jobs, and this trend has encouraged firms to find ways and means of improving the programs related to employee engagement and retention.
For this purpose, the management needs to gather viable information and work on insights from both the current employees as well as the employees who are leaving the company.
The size of a company does not matter because the exit interviews are about finding the reason for any discontent or disorganization in the organization.
You will be surprised to know that as per the released data, more than 90% of the companies that belong in the list of Fortune 500 companies conduct exit interviews.
Asking important questions, along with follow-up queries, is a way to gather information. The next step is also as important because the answers need to be analyzed and interpreted to improve the environment of the workplace.
Once an employee has handed the resignation letter and it is accepted, encourage him to take part in an exit interview voluntarily. As he is quitting the firm, the employee will also be open and honest about his feelings and thus will offer constructive criticism and invaluable information.
The exit interview is a challenge because it is time-consuming as well as expensive, but the rewards are far greater than the cons. The insight helps in implementing new policies that will lead to the growth and prosperity of the firm, along with its employees.
Who should conduct an exit interview?
An exit interview must be conducted by a person that was not directly involved with the employee. Sometimes an employee might be a bit afraid of the person as he was in a position of power and thus will feel threatened or awkward in the telling of truth.
An objective person is the best option as an interviewer because the employee can be honest in his answers without hurting the sentiments of others.
It is generally someone from the Human Resource department that conducts an exit interview in business settings. Sometimes a senior manager or consultant from the management can also interview to understand the mindset of a particular employee.
Several firms do not have experienced people to conduct such interviews, and hence they outsource and hire third-parties for it. Besides business exit interviews are also popular in the education sector where they are generally conducted by students who have already passed out.
Importance of exit interview
Exit interviews are significant as they provide an inside look at the management solutions, day-to-day processes, work culture, and ethics and employee morale of a firm.
It is important to take a standard and consistent approach so that the exit interviews can help you find patterns that will ultimately felicitate welcoming environment and positive relationships.
The importance of exit interviews are described below-
1. Pinpointing opportunities for employee development
The importance of an exit interview is that it will help the interviewer to pinpoint the opportunities for employee development. Asking questions and later analyzing them to find the trends will help in creating changes that will stop the employees from jumping overboard.
2. Identifying trends
Conducting exit interviews regularly will help a company to keep track of their outcomes. Once you start analyzing and evaluating the proceedings, a pattern will emerge that will indicate a clear trend towards certain possibilities.
The importance of exit interviews is that it helps to identify trends so that a company can take measures accordingly.
3. Helps to improve employee retention
Hiring and training a new workforce is a time-consuming as well as an expensive process. Most organizations are trying to find suitable ways and means to increase employee retention to minimize these unnecessary costs.
The exit interview is a platform where an interviewer can ask related questions and determine the reason for quitting the job.
Why are you leaving, were you unhappy, what is the new job offering that we were not and will you change your mind about the current company are some important questions that need to be addressed.
Answers will give the management a fair idea about its own organizational culture so that they can make appropriate changes to improve employee retention.
4. Offer the truth about the job roles
What you expect and what you get are two completely different things. The expectations of an employee can be different from the actual realities of his job profile.
The importance of an exit interview is that the management will be able to know the difference between the expectations and realities from the point of an employee.
The next time the company advertises for the job, it will be more specific so that the new employee has a true concept about his role and responsibility in the firm.
5. Perception about the management
It is hard to spot problems and issues between management and employees, but when a steady stream of employees are leaving the job, there has to be a reason. The exit interview is a chance for the company to know about its management.
The interviewer must ask questions related to this issue so that the employee can provide his thoughts and perception about the management team and his direct manager.
6. Uncovering conflicts if any
It is very hard to know about any conflicts in the organization. An exit interview is a suitable place to uncover information about conflicts and dissent in any team or workplace.
Direct questions like are there any unresolved issues that you would like to mention or do you want to share any untoward experience can open doors for uncovering conflict and dissent related information.
7. Accelerates understanding
The exit interview is seen as a positive step undertaken by the company because it exposes itself to criticism. The feedback uncovers several issues that the firm originally was unaware of.
Hearing and handling the feedback gives a boost in the development process of the firm.
8. Is a chance to retain a valuable employee
The importance of an exit interview is that it gives the company a chance to change the mindset of an employee who is quitting the job. Some of them are more valuable than others, and the company does not want to let them go.
The exit interview acts as a platform where grievances can be aired and sorted so that you can find the middle ground for further negotiations.
9. Enhance work culture
An exit interview is a chance to gather information about the company.
The interviewer can ask open-ended questions like what did you like about the job, what steps can the firm take for further improvement, did the company deliver as per your expectations and describe the organizational culture of the firm.
The trends will help in creating organizational strategies that will further enhance the work culture.
10. Compensations and benefits
One of the most common reasons for employees quitting their jobs is that they are dissatisfied with the compensation and benefits program of the firm.
The exit interview can be an eye-opener in this case if related questions are asked, for instance, is the other job offering more benefits than the present one.
This will help in making the necessary changes in your policies to improve employee retention.
11. Sort out issues
Sometimes an employee has some serious issues at his workplace, and this ultimately results in quitting the current job and finding a new one. The exit interview gives both the management and the employee a chance to sort out the unresolved issues so that the employee can leave on better terms.