Naturally when you find that an employee is about to walk out of the door, you tend to concentrate more on replacing them rather than finding out why they are leaving.
However, study after study has shown that conducting exit interviews is not only important in getting crucial insights to building better teams in future but can play a role in building a more conducive work environment.
But as HR managers, we are wired to focus more on attracting the right kind of talent that learning from the people who leave.
Granted, employing a new candidate may seem like a faster way of ensuring minimal interruption to the business occasioned by the vacancy or effecting change within the organization but in reality you are just postponing dealing with the real issues.
Exit interviews can help you pin point underlying problems that are causing you not to retain talent.
In this article, I highlight four of the most important reasons why you should always conduct exit interviews.
1. You are able to pinpoint opportunities for staff development
Past research has it that employees are about three times more likely to leave for a new employer than to stay and move into a new role at their existing company.
Simply put, job stagnation affects employee retention more so for millennials.
Exit interviews therefore will give you valuable information that will be useful in preventing more of your employees from jumping ship.
2. Give you insights about issues in management
There is a common saying that employees don’t quit jobs they quit managers.
Sometimes problems with management can be difficult to spot since relationships between the managers and their direct staff is somewhat individualized and doesn’t always play out in the open.
But if there is a stream of employees exiting from a particular group, it may be a sign that there is a problem with management.
And given that employees at one point in their careers will leave their jobs to get away from their managers, it’s evident that some of these issues will come up in an exit interview.
3. You are able to stay up to date with compensation and benefits
One of the main reasons why employees leave a company is because of compensation.
Exit interviews will help you determine if that is the reason your employees are leaving to decide whether it’s enough justification to review your compensation structure.
4. Helps you strengthen your employer brand
The simple act of asking exiting employees for their feedback goes a long way in showing that you value their input for the time they have been with you and are keen on improving.
It enables you have a clear picture about branding efforts that may have fallen short and strengthen your communication with future candidates as well as existing employees.
In the end
With so much demand and competition for good talent and shortage of quality, retaining employees is important now more than ever before. And by getting constructive feedback from those who are leaving, you can improve career development practices, strengthen company culture and uncover issues that may be affecting your ability to retain employees most of which may not come up during a normal performance review.