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The Leaver Experience: Why it Pays to Pay Attention

People will leave your business. While some might leave because they have just won the lottery or for an amazing opportunity, others will leave because you got it wrong. In any case, what you do next - the leaver experience - matters.

Last impressions matter

It is a universal truth that some people will leave your business.

Some people will leave because they have just won the lottery (yay for them!) because they have had an amazing opportunity, they just couldn’t say no to, and some people will leave simply because you got it wrong.

But whatever the reason for leaving it is important that you have designed the leaver experience to be a good one, or at least as good as it might be in the situation.

Why should you care about the leaver experience?

So, someone is leaving why should you invest in making their experience of leaving your business a great one? I mean, good riddance, right?

In his studies on experience, memory and decision-making psychologist Daniel Kahneman found that people remember experiences based primarily on 2 key areas:

  1. How the experience felt at the highest and lowest points
  2. How they felt when it ended

Therefore, even if someone has had a generally positive experience with your company, over a long period, it will be diminished by a poor leaver experience. And that will in turn influence whether they would go through it all again or - importantly - recommend you to others.

If you can design a great leaver experience for your people and work hard to ensure that when they decide to end their time with you, they are treated well, and recognised for their achievements and their place in the team, their memories of your business will more likely be a positive one.

Remember, your people are also your brand advocates and potentially they are your customers/consumers and you already know that it is not cool to get bad press or lose revenue!

What sort of leaver are you dealing with?

We think about people leaving in two camps.

  1. Enthusiastic leavers
  2. Reluctant leavers

Reluctant leavers are people leaving not because they want to leave, but because potentially their situation has left them with no option.

Relocating, caring responsibilities, cost of commute, working hours are all examples where the individual is making a reluctant choice to go.

Enthusiastic leavers cannot wait to go! Cultural gaps, bullying/harassment, the expectation of the role not meeting reality.

Understanding why your people are leaving gives helps you see if the experience you designed is delivering the results you expected.

It is expensive to lose employees

Research from Oxford Economics shows that the cost of employees leaving ranges from £20,000 to £39,000 per person!

So for a company of 1500 people with 5% turnover (75 people), this is a cost of £1.5 million at the lowest end of this range!

Measuring the leaver experience saves money

Capturing feedback from all leavers on their experience allows you to understand exactly if it is working for you or not: Have you designed the process for you or for the person that is leaving?

But also, this is your opportunity to understand the reasons for leaving, what was the trigger for making the decision to leave? Was it a positive decision (They have an amazing opportunity to work abroad) or a negative decision (They loved their job but felt that they could not do this to the best of their abilities)?

The People Experience Hub leaver module allows to you ask the important questions and view the data based on any of your demographics, this will help you see where you may have issues and recognise if they are company-wide or something more localised.

Combined with our Candidate Experience and Joiner Experience modules you can get a real view on the start and the end of the employee journey

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