The Real Hidden Costs of Your Exit Interviews
Costs of Exit Interviews

What do exit interviews, and turnover in general, cost your organization?

How do the hidden costs of an exit interview affect your turnover bottom line? Turnover itself is an enormous expense – one of the biggest in dozens upon dozens of industries, and often far more than necessary. But even independent of the big-picture issues that affect your retention rates, the way you conduct exit interviews themselves can play a huge part in the way your turnover – and business – functions over time.

Here are a few big reasons that come to mind, and some ideas of how you can work against these inherent obstacles:

Time: Time really is money, and the time of your organization’s HR team is as valuable as anyone’s. The more HR professionals in your organization function as culture strategists and leaders, the more their time is wasted by process inefficiencies and obsolete or useless question sequences. If your organization trusts its HR talent, you’ll want to do everything you can to empower those individuals to effect change at a 30,000-foot view – not in the trenches with employees who already have a foot out the door.

To get ahead of the time curve, you can simplify your exit process (potentially at the cost of the insights you can obtain) and focus more time on outgoing values employees, as opposed to “favorable exits.” Outsourcing exit interviews to a specialized, third-party provider can give your HR team a wealth of time back, not to mention provide them with the critical metrics to make informed high-level decisions.

Attrition: Especially in smaller businesses where non-HR personnel are involved in the exit interview process, exit interviews can take a toll on morale when they begin to pile up. It doesn’t take a Ph.D. in statistics to notice turnover trends, and those issues become amplified the more the exit interview process is physically a part of the workplace. The intuitive remedy to this issue is to take the interview out of the workplace.

Blind spots: The underlying problems at the heart of your turnover situation give you all the reason you need to persist with exit interviews. But sometimes the underlying problems are sensitive or aren’t details employees want to address while still waiting on a final paycheck. Some programs, such as our ExitRight® software, give HR teams the special capability of administering exit interviews independently and after an employee’s last day, thereby giving them the confidence that their answers are confidential and safe from repercussions.

We’re here to help you sort out the best way to the most efficient and productive way to conduct exits at your organization. For more help paring down your exit interview process without losing the valuable insights, you need to increase retention in the long-run, contact the turnover experts at HSD Metrics.