Exit Interview Tactics in the Education Industry

Trouble retaining promising educational professionals can be detrimental to your entire organization. Here are some strategies for solving your employee retention problems.

Having a learning environment that is founded on teacher stability is critical when forming lasting relationships between staff and students. In a 2014 Gallup Poll teachers were ranked last out of a group of 12 occupations in believing that their opinion was valued in the workplace. If your school or university’s employee retention rate isn’t where you would like it to be, make sure your employees’ voices are heard. Here are a few tactics to implement in your exit interviewing process that will result in effective exit interviews and outcomes.

Focus on aspects of school or university culture. A school’s culture is imperative to the happiness and effectiveness of its employees and students. Every school or university has its own personality. What is your educational establishment known for? Aiming your exit interview questions around topics such as perception of fairness, benefits, pay structure, leadership training and job security allows for a strong set of base questions that will help you get to the bottom of why your employee retention rate isn’t where you would like it to be.

See the bigger picture. Instead of focusing on an employee issue, search deeper for an issue within your institution. Identifying problems within your organization will help you thoroughly resolve a difficulty that perhaps multiple employees are struggling with. In your exit interviews, make sure there isn’t too much attention being paid to personal issues, such as job satisfaction, and that there is emphasis placed on organizational issues, such as freedom, management style and the opportunity for promotion.

Fact versus fiction. On paper the benefits of being a teacher sound great: Summers off, workdays end at 3:00 p.m., long holiday breaks and casual business attire. In reality, standards must be met, teachers work hours after the final bell rings, salaries are low and students must receive individualized attention. This transition can be challenging for new teachers. When giving your exit interviews make sure to measure the level of respect that teachers feel, determine whether or not they have been given the proper training, make sure faculty feels supported and track the progress of these key factors. ExitRight® software can help you identify, analyze and observe common trends regarding exit survey results. ExitRight will send user-friendly reports as frequently as you would like them to track the progress of issues.

Mentors and money. Research shows that 97 percent of teachers who grossed more than $40,000 in their first year of teaching and 92 percent of teachers who were assigned a mentor during their first year of teaching return the next year. Ask employee exit interview questions that inquire about these elements and document whether there is an effective mentorship program and salary system in place.

As teacher retention and morale are boosted, students’ success rates are too. Are you ready to retain promising staff and faculty and help students receive the education they deserve? ExitRight provides your school or university with a clear picture of your organization’s wants and needs. Call (800) 295-1863, or contact HSD Metrics online, to learn how you can get started today.

About Deb Dwyer

Deborah Dwyer is the founder and president of HSD Metrics. With over 30 years of combined experience in human resource management and survey research, Deborah’s extensive knowledge reaches beyond organizational research to include significant expertise in work climate improvement, retention, hiring and selection, employee orientation, performance management systems, recognition programs, and career development systems.

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