How much an exit interview can impact your recruiting and hiring process

Categories: Advice for HR Professionals, Advice for Start-ups and Entrepreneurs

While job interviews are used to assess whether a candidate is suitable for the particular job, exit interviews don’t have any influence on the resigning process. Instead, their main goal is to establish the reasons why the employees leave the job, so that company can make some improvement in the future and avoid great staff turnover. The information collected during this interview can shed more light on employees’ perception of the company and it can help HR experts pinpoint a problem.

Furthermore, while candidates are often reluctant to be completely honest at the job interview, very few of them feel the same when it comes to the exit interview. They are usually happy to share their thoughts about their experience and even make suggestions for improvement. All this can be invaluable for many aspects of business operations, including the recruitment process.

Problems get uncovered

There are many cases where employees really have no objections to their salary or the way they were treated but have been given an opportunity to earn more or possibly relocate to a more attractive location. Such reasons are logical and legitimate and the information you collect may not be so useful. However, many people choose to leave their company primarily because of how they are treated or if they realize there is no chance of getting a better position within the company in a foreseeable future. That kind of information suggests that there is an important issue that has to be dealt with promptly. If people start leaving your company for such reasons, the word will spread soon and you’ll be unlikely to attract good candidates in the future, which can prove detrimental to the company’s development.

Find out what employees want

It’s often that managers lose touch with what their employees want from the job. The former believe they know what the latter want, but the reality can be very different. The exit interview gives you a chance to have a reality check and see if you truly understand what the employees want. The feedback you get will prove invaluable when hiring people later since you’ll be in a position to tailor your offer to their needs and help positive employer branding. Your reputation as an employer will increase significantly due to the comments from former employees and you can see it as an amazing parting gift.

Getting specific answers

In order to deal with any problem, you need to know exactly what caused it. That’s why you shouldn’t settle for answers that blame “interpersonal relations”. Instead, try to obtain answers that are very specific, supported with examples and rectify the problem immediately. You might have one employee who is creating an unhealthy and unproductive atmosphere, but that employee is not resigning. It’s those around them who suffer and who can’t take it any longer. Keeping such a person on board will likely affect the way any newcomers feel at their new workplace and they might even quit very soon. Bearing in mind the cost of hiring and the amount of resources that are spent on searching for the right candidate, recruitment and training, you’ll realize you’ve lost a lot of both time and money.

Money matters

If you notice that people are leaving your company to do a similar or even the same job elsewhere, but for more money and better benefits, you need to realize you’ll have a hard time attracting new employees, to begin with. That’s why you should learn about salaries at competing companies, along with the benefits they offer and the exit interview is a great opportunity to do that. You might realize that you need to increase salaries and thus attract better candidates for the job. It’s a challenging task, but there is no other way if your competitors are beating you with their offer.

Detect your company’s system mistakes

It’s not uncommon for employees to leave the company because there is a flaw in the system. Such glitches can’t be compensated by any salary or great atmosphere at the workplace. They actually influence your employees’ behavior whether they like working with you or not. Employees have every right to expect the management to improve the system and if there are no upgrades, they’ll be disappointed and disillusioned, which might easily make them leave the company. Unless the system is improved, every new employee is bound to encounter the same situation and the same feelings. That’s why you should use the exit interview to identify such flaws in the system, as seen by your employees.

Gain experience

In order to be able to hire the right person, you need to know what kind of person you’re after. The exit interview can help you with that, too. To be able to establish every candidate’s attitude before you actually hire them, you should compare them to the people who have left your company and try to figure out whether your new candidates will also leave your company for the same reasons. Needless to say, there are no guarantees you’ll be right, but you’ll at least be able to make a more informed decision.

As you can see, there are many benefits you can reap from the exit interview. However, you need to be aware that the employee resigning is not under any obligation to have that interview with you, i.e. you can’t force them to do it. On the other hand, those who agree to it will most likely give you some valuable answers that you can use to improve your recruitment, among other aspects.