Top 15 Employee Exit Interview Questions

exit interview

If Employees leave your organization and you don’t know why, you may be losing a valuable chance to improve it. In fact, their silence may cause more employees to leave your workplace in the near future. Why? Since you didn’t hear about the problem that caused your employee’s exit – there is a good chance it might still be out there. The answer could be an exit interview.

While some organizations spend thousands of dollars on external business consultants to target problems, you can use the employee exit interview to learn how you can do better. Who else has a wealth of insider information on what’s really going on in your business? And as an added bonus, they’ll do it for free. That’s why an exit interview is gold. Here we list the benefits of exit interviews, tricks on how to get more thorough and honest responses, and what questions to ask.

Benefits of exit interviews may include the following:

  • Highlight the need to change work culture, fix, or change policies and/or change personnel
  • Underline the need to change pay grades
  • Prevent other good workers from seeking employment somewhere else
  • Help to make sure that the replacement employee is better prepared for the challenges/demands of the job

Benefits of an exit interview from fired employees:

  • Allows the employee to blow off steam and calm down after they say negative things about a boss or coworkers
  • You may learn that your company had unreasonable expectations
  • It may lower the tension so an employee doesn’t take legal action
  • If you offer understanding and you accept their feedback it may help to ensure that friends, who are still employed by the company, don’t turn against the business

Tricks on when and how to give exit interviews

If an employee is leaving a workplace because of a bad experience, they might run for the exit when the last day is done.

According to The Employers Association’s Coffee with Kenny video, there are three useful tricks employers can use to get an exit interview that is not only thorough and honest, but also adds value to the future success of your organization.

  1. If you ask the employee to fill out an exit form before they leave the organization, make sure to share the completed form with someone in authority, such as a manager or senior leader. Many organizations store those forms in the employee’s file folder, never to be seen again. That information has a lot of value and it can help to target workplace patterns and make future decisions in the organization.
  2. Call the employee for an exit interview about one week after they have left the company. That way there is a better chance you will get a more thoughtful, rational, and calm response to your questions.
  3. Have a third party do the exit interview. The exiting employee may be much more honest and comfortable when speaking to a third party than speaking to their former co-worker or boss.

Here are some sample questions for your next exit interview:

  1. What is your main reason for leaving?
  2. Are there other reasons you are leaving?
  3. What has been the best part for you in your time with our organization?
  4. How about your least favourite part during your time with our organization?
  5. What made you start looking for another job in the first place? Was it a specific event or a gradual change?
  6. Is there a message you would like give to management upon your departure?
  7. If a friend asked you, would you recommend that they take a job here?
  8. If you could change anything about how the company operates, what would it be?
  9. What did you think of your compensation here? Did you find we were out of line of what you were able to get in the market? By how much?
  10. Did you ever bring up your grievances with management prior to looking for a new job? What happened?
  11. What did you think of our benefits package here? Was this a major factor in your decision to leave? What should our benefits package be?
  12. What did you think of our performance review process? Was this a motivating factor for you to leave (either because of a lack thereof or not done correctly)?
  13. Did your manager directly contribute to your leaving? If so, can you share any feedback for your manager with us?
  14. Did a conflict on your team or your teammates contribute to your leaving? If so, can you share any feedback with us for how to improve the team dynamics?
  15. What do you think is the state of employee morale in general here?

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