Why Exit Interviews Can Help With Your Recruitment Strategy

This is a guest post from Peninsula UK, a leading professional services provider to small businesses across the UK.

Inevitably, employees will leave your business from time to time. Whilst this can be disappointing for you, there’s still a chance to learn something from the experience.

Exit interviews are a fantastic opportunity to ask the leaving employee a set of questions before they depart, so that they can provide your business with valuable feedback to act upon.

Ultimately, they’re an important tool that if undertaken correctly, can improve your business.

By utilising exit interviews, you can gain essential feedback on why the employee in question is leaving your business. In the long-term, this can help you make improvements, which could reduce the likelihood of other employees leaving. It is also a good learning opportunity to identify how you can improve the employee experience and better attract top talent.

How the right questions can help

Think of an exit interview as a chance to gain a better understanding of why an employee might want to leave your business.

It can be difficult to hear their feedback if it’s negative, but it does provide you with an opportunity to better the organisation and prevent your best employees from leaving.

It may identify a few things that can quite easily be improved, which can be implemented, and in turn, increase the businesses retention rates.

However, to do this, you’ll have to dig deep and ask some insightful questions in order to determine the real reason why an employee is leaving. This will enable you to unearth information such as:

  • The reasons why someone is leaving—it may not always be for negative purposes, but either way, you can act on any feedback you receive
  • Any perceived benefits or compensation gaps
  • How management performed
  • Feedback on company culture
  • Areas they feel your business can improve

How to approach your exit interviews

Exit interviews can be quite nerve-racking for employees, they are often worried about burning bridges or getting people in trouble. Therefore, the interviews need to be approached in a way that ensures the employee feels safe and open to speak freely. On the other hand, employees are more likely to provide honest feedback, than they would have when they were an employee. Given that they know they can’t be punished or disadvantaged by speaking ill of the company, they are likely to be more truthful and provide genuine feedback.

With that in mind, this means that you need to be asking the right sort of questions to obtain the information you need.

An example of some questions you could ask are:

  • What prompted you to begin looking for another position?
  • Did you feel as though you were well equipped to be successful in your role?
  • How would you describe the company culture here?
  • What could have changed in order for you to stay?
  • If you could pick one important thing to change, what would it be?
  • What was the biggest attraction to your new position?

How it helps with your recruitment strategy

With the details you receive from departing employees, you can tailor your business to be more appealing to current and future employees.

As part of your retention efforts, you find out information:

  • About your employer brand
  • Weaknesses in your business procedures

For example, an employee may leave if they don’t believe there’s a clear salary review structure. If a competitor then offers a better wage and clearer progression, they’re likely to leave and take advantage of that.

So, this could be something you can improve upon, to ensure that staff members all receive fair and accurate reviews. This will mean staff loyalty and hard work are rewarded.

In short, the exit interview can inspire your business towards positive change.

And change will make you more appealing to talented candidates, as well as ensure you’re keeping your current staff happy and in turn reducing turnover.

Ultimately exit interviews are a vital aspect of the offboarding process. However, an exit interview is only valuable when the feedback that you’re given is investigated and acted upon. Not only will it prove that you take employee feedback seriously, but also your chances of keeping more of your employees in the future rises exponentially.



7 Must Ask Exit Interview Questions

Exit Interviews A Chance To Improve Your Business

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Are you a candidate looking for your next role? Let us help you.

Alternatively, are you an organisation with a HR or Reward vacancy? Get in touch 


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