There are a number of reasons employees will leave your company – they might be changing industry, retiring, looking for a more senior role or simply outgrown their current position. Either way, whether you’re parting ways through a mutual decision or they’ve left you high and dry for an exciting record deal, the exit interview is an invaluable experience for hiring managers. Here are the important questions you need to ask employees before they move on.
Why did you decide to leave your position here?
Obvious as it may be, it’s crucial that you give employees the opportunity to explain why they’re resigning. Was there a specific incident or element of the job that prompted them to leave? Encourage them to be forthcoming here, if there is an unsavoury reason behind their departure, you want to know!
Did the job match your expectations?
A key reason why employees become disillusioned at work is because they feel like the role hasn’t lived up to it’s advertisement. If you’ve been selling the dream at the interview stage but coming up short in reality, you’re going to have serious trouble retaining talent. And if that happens, you can kiss your employer brand goodbye!
Was there adequate supports in place for you to succeed in your role?
You hired this person because you saw their potential to do the job well. If this hasn’t happened you need to look at how they were supported in their role. Did they get enough guidance from management? Was there sufficient budget allocated to the tools or tech? Were the training methods up to scratch?
What was the biggest challenge in the role?
A straightforward question but a good way to gently tease out any potentially negative information. The whole point of the exit interview is to get some constructive feedback so that if something’s awry, you can fix it. With this in mind, it’s a good idea to urge the interviewee once more to be honest about their experiences.
What was the best part of your role?
You’ve heard the bad, now it’s time to soften the blow with some optimism. The purpose here isn’t to boost your ego but to inform you of the more positive aspects of the job that you can play up to potential hires.
What does the next you look like?
Depending on how cordial your split is, this can be an extremely valuable question. You want to know what skills and attributes the employee’s replacement should have to do the job as well if not better than them. Nobody has a better idea of what’s needed to fill the role, than the person currently in it.
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