3 Reasons Why It Is Worthwhile Investing in Outplacement Services
Employers of Choice provide outplacement services to their departing employees, but other ‘less sophisticated’ employers often either do not provide it, or they consider outplacement as a grudge purchase.
First off: what do outplacement services do?
Outplacement is an employer-provided benefit provided to help departing employees make a smooth and timely career transition. Outplacement support is offered by employers interested in giving their exiting employees the care, counselling, tools, discipline and motivation to find new careers.
Employees most often receiving outplacement services are exiting their employers, as a result of being laid off.
Here are 3 reasons why employers should invest in outplacement services for departing employees, rather than exiting them without any career transitioning support help.
Reason 1 - Why employers should invest in outplacement services
Your Current Employees and your former employees are your best advocates
Even though employees may sign their severance agreements, they usually don't feel happy to be let go, regardless of circumstances. They might feel any or all of mad, sad, embarrassed, and/or ‘shell shocked’.
Those feelings decline in their intensity and a whole lot sooner for departing employees who have been provided outplacement support and find that next chapter in their career more quickly. This helps to reduce mental health problems for the individual, their families and society generally.
The benefit of providing outplacement services can be long-lasting.
One of our clients in the media and content area, who repeatedly asked us to support their departing employees with outplacement services said to me: “Greg, we are laying off many of our people. However, they didn’t ask for this to happen to them. And they are people we cared to hire and continue to employ, up until now. I want everyone to feel that if we ever reach out to them because we need to re-hire them in whatever capacity, that we can. This is an increasingly small world.”
Reason 2 why employers should invest in outplacement support
Your Ex-Employees Talk To Others
Former colleagues continue to keep in touch with each other, regardless.
What’s more common nowadays is that they may be tempted to post off employer rating sites like Glassdoor or Seek. Millennials are the most informed generation ever. With 75 per cent of the workforce projected to comprise of Millennials by 2025, expect them to make snappy decisions about their prospective employers from what they read online, good or bad.
One HR Director who hired us to help with outplacement told me, “Regardless of them leaving our company, they still have colleagues here. They will rely on them as references. I know those who signed our severance agreed not to damage our reputation or take legal action against us. But they still talk to others. I want everyone to speak positively about the way we treated them. It will come back to us one “way or the other. We have the power to make it a positive boomerang not one that damages us!”
Reason 3 why employers should invest in outplacement support services
Investing In Departing Employees Means Showing a Duty of Care
While investing in outplacement support services shows you care about them, it also sends a message to those remaining in the business too. “It says that the company cares about you throughout your entire employee life cycle.
It reinforces group cohesion with your current staff and shows them how their employer responds to difficult circumstances in a decent way and positive manner.
Social responsibility counts, and it counts even more with Millennials who are proven to be more invested in organisations that value social impact.
But providing outplacement services also means a lot to people who are at the tail end of their career, who are more likely find it harder to get a new job. Despite all the legislation that is designed to reduce age bias, there is subtle ageism out there. By providing older exiting employees with outplacement support services, they are given the support and connection with a caring career coach whom they can turn to for advice, a shoulder to lean on and insight, they otherwise would not have.
Laid-off employees need more than just the proverbial ‘pink slip with severance pay’ attached to it. They need real support to help them determine their next chapter in their career and new employment opportunities.
Outplacement solutions are a great way to transition employees to a new future, show that you care about your staff while maintaining your reputation, image, demonstrating your values all the way through the employee life cycle.
Greg Weiss has authored 2 books about career transitioning and is soon to release a third. He has deep expertise in outplacement and employee onboarding. He is the Founder of Career365 (formerly CareerSupport365) is a leading Australian employee transitioning firm, specialising in outplacement and employee onboarding.