3 Valuable Tips to Get More from Your Exit Interviews

If you’re in HR, there’s no doubt you’re well versed in the importance of the interview in the hiring process. But there’s also a chance that you might be overlooking one of the most effective and underutilized tools for improving your company and its culture: the exit interview. An exit interview, which is given as an employee chooses to leave your company, can help you glean insight into why a team member decided to go, as well as what they experienced – good and bad – during their time on staff.

3 Helpful Exit Interview Tips

If you want to conduct an exit interview that is helpful for both you and the employee leaving, check out the advice below. These exit interview tips can help ensure you take advantage of the valuable opportunity to better understand what goes on at your business – and learn how you can improve it.

  1. Do not have direct supervisors conduct exit interviews.

Many higher-ups believe that people choose to leave their company over money, but a survey by Price WaterhouseCoopers revealed that compensation wasn’t the first — or even the second – reason that most people choose to quit their jobs. Instead, the lack of opportunity for promotion and bad relationships with supervisors topped the list. 

Because supervisors often have a skewed perception of their employee’s feelings about them, ensure that someone completely different than a direct supervisor conducts the exit interview (like an HR manager) — even if the employee-supervisor relationship was good. With their supervisor in the room, employees may feel awkward or reticent about openly discussing work relationships – and this can ultimately cause you to lose out on a valuable opportunity to glean insight into company inner-workings.

  1. Reassure the candidate about confidentiality.

Employees who choose to leave a company may feel hesitant to share the honest reasons for their departure – especially if they feel that it could damage a relationship, or result in them losing out on opportunity for a reference recommendation. Reassure employees that all responses will remain confidential (in terms of their source), and encourage them to be as honest as they can. Once you’ve completed the interview, be sure that you ultimately do uphold that commitment to confidentiality.

  1. Use information gathered for employee feedback.

If you have an employee review process in place, use the information you gather from answers to exit interview questions to give helpful and actionable feedback about employee performance. Never attribute comments to the interviewees – simply analyze the feedback you’ve gotten, then come up with ways you see that the employee can improve.

If you’ve recently had some star employees leave, and you’re looking for temporary help at your office, reach out to Vesper. Our team of experienced office managers can step in to make sure your company functions without a hiccup.


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