We’re here to help you “Eat That Frog” and get through the barriers that prevent your business from thriving. That’s why we’ve created our “Fool-proof Recruitment” Process.
Ensuring you have fool-proof recruitment is vital to the success of your organisation – if you’re not convinced, then humour us and give this a read anyway… we’ll be blogging regular TFIF articles to help you strengthen your HR.
You need: the right people, at the right time, with the right skills and abilities – but so does every other company, which is why recruiting and retaining the best people is becoming more competitive. You might be recruiting due to increased demand, company growth, skills gaps or leavers, but in today’s guide we’ll be focusing on reactive recruitment and looking at leavers within an organisation.
Step 1 – The Exit Interview
We’ve all been there – it’s Friday afternoon and you’re about to congratulate yourself for making it through another week when your best employee (let’s call her Jane) walks into your office, white envelope in hand and a look on her face as if someone has replaced her rocket salad with stinging nettles. She’s been offered another role and has decided to accept, giving you one month’s notice…
Don’t panic!!! Don’t rush around the desk to hold on to her ankle and beg her not to leave and please, for the love of frog, don’t make a counter-offer you just can’t afford.
This is actually the first step in your new fool-proof recruitment process, because Jane provides the opportunity for you to find out why a valued member of staff wants to leave and what you can do to prevent it happening again…
Take a deep breath and think about the following…
There are many reasons why employees move on, including salary, benefits, career development and working conditions. They may be unhappy with their working relationships with managers or the values and culture of your organisation, but whatever it is, you need to find out! Most organisations make the mistake of conducting exit interviews in the final days, if at all. Schedule that exit interview sooner rather than later.
If Jane does leave, what skills, experience (and possibly office supplies) will she take with her?
Get Jane to review her job description to give you a clear indication of whether the document is accurate – if she’s taken on extra work that isn’t reflected in the job description, those responsibilities will get neglected when she’s gone. Ask Jane to tell you what she perceives her skills to be – when recruiting her replacement, you’ll then have a better chance of getting the right skills and attributes from your next hire.
What’s the cost of replacing her, besides your sanity?
Costs per hire vary dependent on industry, role and location, but you need to consider the hidden costs, for example, lost productivity while Jane works her notice and the time it will take to get a new recruit working productively for you. Think how much it will cost to advertise her role, about the time taken by the hiring manager/s in interviews and the selection process, onboarding and training costs (many of which may be absorbed by your partnered Recruitment Agency). If Jane’s main reason to leave was financial, you might find you are better off asking Jane to put a business case forward for a pay increase!
So what should you gain from Jane’s exit interview?
- Why is she leaving, and what triggered her to start looking for a new position? Getting an honest, accurate answer will be difficult as most leavers give a polite reason for leaving. To encourage honesty, it’s important that the manager undertaking the exit interview is impartial and won’t be involved in future reference writing. Confidentiality should be assured and the purpose of the interview explained. Using an external provider such as Eat That Frog to conduct exit interviews will help you capture more accurate data about why people are leaving, as individuals are more willing to be truthful when there is reassurance of anonymity.
- Can you make a counter offer to encourage her to stay? Most counter offers are short-lived and can be revisited after 3 to 6 months – though don’t forget, they will only be successful if the reasons for someone leaving can be rectified! If Jane’s leaving because she wants opportunities for promotion, but you can’t promote her, look for sideways moves that give her more experience and skills and make her work more interesting. All organisations encounter this problem, but, ironically, there will be managers within your business who feel overworked and stretched, some to the point of leaving too! Doesn’t it therefore make good sense to solve both situations and provide a win for all – facilitating greater delegation of responsibility to those who want it?
- What are the Strengths and Weaknesses of your organisation? Jane will have an opinion on your company’s working environment, culture, processes and systems, management and development – in fact anything that determines the quality of the organisation, and its relationship with staff, customers, suppliers, third-parties and the general public. Exit interviews are an excellent way to identify specific mistakes and improvement opportunities in this vital area.
- How to ensure a successful transfer of knowledge, contacts, insights, tips and experience? It’s important not to overlook the value of Jane – you’ve invested time and training into her development, which now has to be shared internally and not wasted. This skills review will also support when analysing her current role and the skills and attributes you’ll need in her replacement.
By conducting an effective exit interview you are protecting your employer brand – it’s important that Jane feels she has a voice and feels her time spent with the company has been valuable. Leave on a positive note, with good relations and mutual respect… and Thank Frog It’s Friday!
If you’d like to know more about the ways we can help your business thrive, click here or call us on 01803-551551.