Leaving a company or letting go of an employee can be difficult, especially when the departure is not well prepared! Although less well known than onboarding, offboarding is a key stage in an employee's career with the company. It refers to the way in which companies prepare for the departure of their employees. Sometimes neglected or less well prepared than onboarding, it is nevertheless essential to ensure that the end of the contract between the employee and the company takes place in a serene and constructive manner. To help you adopt the right practices, we spoke to Emma Freychet, Human Resources Director at Easy Skill. She explains the essential steps for successful offboarding. Whatever the size of your company, incorporating these steps into your offboarding process will enable you to maintain good relations with your former employees, ensuring a transfer of know-how while enhancing your employer brand.
1. Communicating the employee's departure
Communication is an essential part of offboarding. For a successful departure, it is crucial to inform employees about the company's offboarding process, so that they know what to expect and what is expected of them. But it's just as important to communicate with employees who remain with the company, in order to preserve the climate of trust and prepare for the transfer of know-how... To prevent rumors and speculation, and depending on the context, it may be beneficial to share the reasons for the employee's departure... As a way of thanking the departing employee, think about highlighting his or her work in your internal newsletter, for example!
2. Skills transfer
A successful departure cannot be achieved without an effective skills transfer. It is essential to capitalize on the know-how and expertise of the departing employee. Make sure that processes are passed on to the person taking over the position, and recorded in knowledge management software. Organize knowledge transfer sessions to enable the person taking over to familiarize themselves with the job's responsibilities and processes. Documenting key information in knowledge management software will ease the transition and avoid any loss of critical know-how. It is therefore essential to implement such knowledge management software.
3. Administrative formalities
It's essential to anticipate all the administrative formalities involved in the employee's departure, such as the termination of the employment contract in accordance with current legislation, and the cancellation of social security contracts. Prepare a detailed list of the administrative tasks involved, to make sure you don't forget anything. Administrative formalities can vary in complexity from country to country. To lighten your mental load and ensure that each task is completed by the parties concerned, use an HRIS with automated reminders. At Easy Skill, we rely on BambooHR to automate onboarding and offboarding tasks and free us from administrative stress, but there are many HRIS on the market with different functionalities depending on the need.
4. IT Security
Data security is of paramount importance when an employee leaves the company. Ensure that all access to systems and applications is revoked promptly, and that sensitive information is protected. Collect the equipment provided to the employee, such as laptops, telephones and access badges, to avoid any risk of data leakage. Make sure you inform the IT team and follow the appropriate security protocols. Don't forget to transfer all the employee's contacts to the person who will be taking over the job.
5. Get constructive feedback
Don't miss the opportunity to gain valuable information by conducting an effective exit interview with your departing employee. This key moment allows you to capitalize on the company's successes and identify areas for improvement. It also offers the employee the opportunity to take stock and share any points that have not been satisfactory. For this interview to be effective, make sure you put the person at ease. When the departure does not go smoothly, it's best to wait until the employee has left the premises before sharing feedback with management. This ensures that the feedback is sincere and constructive.
6. Nurturing your network
Don't underestimate the importance of cultivating good relationships even after an employee has left. This person can become a valuable ally by recommending future employees or bringing in future business opportunities. These employees may join other missions in the future, so it's crucial to maintain good relations with them.
In conclusion, an employee's departure deserves as much attention as his or her arrival. It helps to maintain good relations with the employee and also to reinforce the employer brand over time.
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