Whether the employee is leaving voluntarily or not, offboarding can be a delicate process for HR. Notifying the team, recovering assets, following legal guidelines – there’s a lot to remember and do (often with very little notice).
Here are the 4 biggest issues every HR team needs to address when offboarding an employee:
1. Legally managing the employee’s departure from the business
Without a clear audit trail of key events, businesses risk finding themselves unable to dispute unfair dismissal claims. A structured process is vital to ensure the offboarding process is legally compliant for every exiting employee.
The key here is to try and automate as much of the process as possible to reduce the chance for human error. At the very least, make sure your offboarding process is comprehensive, up to date and actually used by HR.
2. Recovering company assets
Mobile phones, laptops, uniforms, security passes – all of these assets need to be recovered from the exiting employee. In many organisations, this process can be very prolonged or even forgotten, which can result in lost assets.
Again, this issue can be overcome with good HR processes. Make sure you have a record of the assets each company has so when the time comes, you know what you’ll need to recover.
3. Revoking systems access
Disgruntled former employees are suspected to be the biggest source of data security breaches – all be- cause they never had their system access revoked. As more and more business systems move into the cloud, it’s vital IT is included in the offboarding process from the beginning.
It can be as simple as sending notifications to IT of who is leaving and what they had access to.
4. Engaging the employee in an alumni group
Former employee referrals are a valuable source of quality talent. Many employees even ‘Boomerang’ back into the organisation later in their career – bringing added experience and knowledge with them.
A positive offboarding experience leaves the door open to these referrals and re-hires further down the track. Keeping a strong network of former employees provides HR with a powerful recruitment channel. With tools like LinkedIn, it’s easier than ever to build a strong alumni network, and never too late to start.
Of course, this is only the tip of the iceberg for many organisations – especially if you’ve got high staff turnover.
What other challenges do you come across in your offboarding process?