For the large majority of organizations, employee turnover is inevitable. Workers get promoted, want to do something different or their personal circumstances change. But how often do you commit to running an exit interview when an employee leaves to understand why

There’s a lot to learn when you take the time to install an exit interview process, especially if you employ hourly workers. Here’s why an exit interview is one of the most important processes you can implement in your business to increase retention and improve your company culture.

What is an Exit Interview?

Manager conducting exit interview in a coffee shop

Exit interviews are constructive conversations with a departing employee who has terminated their contract and plans to leave. Ideally, these interviews should be conducted by human resource staff or an independent organization so you avoid any bias or fear of speaking out and you get honest answers. You can conduct the interview face to face or by phone.

Importance of Exit Interviews for Better Employee Retention

By asking open questions about an employee’s rationale for leaving a job and gaining constructive feedback, an employer won’t just uncover the reasons people quit, they’d also learn how to change the workplace to make it more attractive. 

Six Reasons to Implement Exit Interviews

Employee Turnover Is Expensive

If you have a continual turnover of staff, your expenses will rise. Even if your employees are hourly workers, they need to be trained and given an introduction to how the business operates. You’ll likely need to supply a uniform and then there’s the time to get them onto the payroll and create a staff record. 

So, when you lose them for some reason, initial expenses and time investments are wasted, creating even more stress around retention. In addition, there’s significant competition and staff shortages in retail and quick food service working environments creating a greater need for hiring and retention strategies.

Retention solutions like exit interviews from HourWork help you save $1,587 per retained employee. By retaining a single employee with HourWork, you already reach your return on investment. 

Skilled People Are in Demand

Losing specialists, skilled members, and managers significantly impact your business. Skilled workers are in high demand and finding suitable replacements can be expensive and time-consuming – especially in today’s ultra-competitive market. 

With exit interviews in place, you will a better chance at understanding why your most critical team members are leaving and gain the insight to address root causes. Combining retention and hiring strategies can help you better compete for high-demand workers. 

You May Have a Problem in Your Team

Conflict or disagreement concept.

Strategic exit interview questions will highlight what’s working and raise flags around the issues that influence decisions to leave. The tough reality is that internal processes, poor communication, management style, and employee expectations are the driving factors behind turnover. 

Having the ability to understand where your business can and should improve gives you the insight to alleviate those problems in the future.

Understand Employee Experience

The importance of exit interviews is that they frequently identify employees’ workplace challenges and experiences that you may be unaware of but have the power to do something about. 

For example, exposure to abusive customers in the restaurant industry with no backup support from management or other staff is stressful. By introducing a no-tolerance policy for abuse and giving staff training in customer care, you will not only improve the customer’s experience but also support staff. Interventions like these make your business a more positive place to work.

Promote the Positives

Close up man hand arranging wood block stacking as step stair symbolizing promotion

Exit interviews are not just there to discover negative reasons people are leaving. A primary reason for moving to another job is promotion. If hourly workers use your business to gain training and experience before moving to a promotion, that’s a good thing and reflects that you are doing something right. 

It is something you can use to encourage people to work for you. However, it can also act as a wake-up call to you to be alert to high-performing staff and those with potential. Think about how you can be proactive and encourage them to stay by having opportunities for growth or access to management development.

It Highlights What Current and Future Employees Want

Many industries, including the service sector, find recruitment difficult. Exit interviews give you insight into what could have made a worker stay as well as the opportunity to create an environment and role that is more attractive to potential hires. 

For example, childcare issues or caring for an elderly relative can make it challenging to work certain shifts. Maybe someone else was unable to get to work on public transportation. By understanding the variety of these issues, you can create strategies and plans to better accommodate in the future. 

When exited employees have the opportunity to reveal issues they encountered with their role in your business, you will see that it isn’t always about pay and extends into their personal lives as well as what they want to achieve in the role.

Implement Employee Hiring & Retention Strategies with HourWork

Exit interviews are precious and will give you insights into things you would not otherwise have been aware of. Serving over 5,000 stores and restaurants across the US, HourWork Solutions has systems and ways to support employee recruitment and retention, including seamless exit interviews that help you gain actionable data. Get in touch with us today to discuss your hiring and retention needs.