CareerSupport365 | No Need to Slam the Door on the Way Out? A Better Way! | Unemployed speedometer

No Need to Slam the Door on the Way Out? A Better Way!

 

In this day and age it’s becoming more common for businesses to place an extreme emphasis upon the bottom line---at the expense of thousands of workers who, in many cases, still are capable of productive, meaningful contributions to their employer.

But why does this happen?

It’s the employer that will ultimately end up on the losing end

Why are so many individuals who have demonstrated tremendous loyalty and positive work habits suddenly and unceremoniously shown the door and are therefore forced to re-define their definition of what it means to work?CareerSupport365 | No Need to Slam The Door on the Way Out? A Better Way!

Several reasons abound for this disturbing but not uncommon trend. Age discrimination; racial and gender discrimination; poor culture fit; tardiness, and sexual/physical/legal misconduct are all factors---legitimate and otherwise---that impact not only the ex-employee, but also the business itself.

And it’s the employer that will ultimately end up on the losing end, according to some HR experts.

Patrick Higgins, senior HR consultant with National Inspection & Consultants in Fort Myers, Florida, asserts that, in many cases, terminating an employee for any of the above reasons indicates that the employer dropped the ball.

“Any time a termination occurs, it signals a problem within the organization,” he says.

Greg Smith, author of 'New Leader: How To Attract, Keep and Motivate Your Workforce'  supports this idea. He has suggested that underperforming employees, by and large, need not shoulder nearly as much blame as has often been the case in the past.

According to Smith, the symptoms of workplace terminations are treated far more than the root causes of what ails the organization. Instead of intervening to correct an overwhelmed or poorly-trained manager’s decisions, all too often employers take the easy way out by letting the employee go.

This, says Smith, is where employers really fail their employees. "Poor employees usually get blamed for whatever went wrong. They get fired, the organization hires new people, those employees leave, and it starts all over again. And nothing is done about the underlying problem," he asserts.

Even if the problem with an employee stemmed from personal troubles, says Bob Largent, SPHR, a consultant with HR Management Associates in Perry, Georgia, the company should have noticed and been there to intervene. If not, "that means no one along the way was paying attention."

"Once someone has been fired, you need to stop and look at the entire system to see what's broken," says Michael Holzschu of Holzschu, Jordan, Schiff & Associates, an HR consulting firm based in Farmington Hills, Michigan.

(Just Like) Starting Over

CareerSupport365 | No Need to Slam The Door on the Way Out? A Better Way!

The entire career transition process can be overwhelming.

Not only do the formerly employed have to cope with the sudden loss of income, they must also deal with overwhelming emotions that can make it very difficult to move forward without a solid support system.

Unfortunately, many employers worldwide offer traditional outplacement sources that often do not reflect, nor keep pace with, today’s ever-changing employment environment. Research has shown that the traditional approach to providing former employees outplacement services ---a fixed period of re-adjustment (usually 30-90 days); mandatory, often inflexible, attendance meetings that conflict with individual schedules; and a distressingly low completion rate of only about 35%---is simply not cost-effective, especially if applied to the vast majority of workers who make a low salary, or even an hourly wage.

Depending upon the outplacement’s cost and length of time involved, the executive and management sectors are often given preference over the ordinary worker, simply because most companies consider it too costly and thus a poor ROI.

When a company unceremoniously dismisses their employees, rhetorically speaking, what’s the greater impact on the company’s long-term ROI in this instance---investing in re-training or cross-training employees to increase their tangential and inherent workplace value, or simply shunting them off to the unemployment line?

Employer brands do matter

Successfully being able to reinvent one's self is a hallmark of persistence and drive.CareerSupport365 | No Need to Slam The Door on the Way Out? A Better Way!

But without a support system as mentioned above, such efforts may very well be for naught.

When companies invest in cutting-edge outplacement offerings such as CareerSupport365, not only are they getting a tremendous ROI, they are also preserving their own corporate integrity that could otherwise be affected by negative publicity from an understandably disgruntled ex-employee who might vent their anger and frustration on User-Generated Content (UGC) web sites such as glassdoor and Vault.

CareerSupport365 proactively helps the employer’s financial bottom line by providing significant cost savings while filling a much-needed niche---streamlining workers’ employment needs to accommodate their ever-increasing Internet savvy. We do this via affordable, pre-paid, practical, self-paced learning modules. Additionally, on-line, real-time video interviews and career counseling services and links to its sister site The First Few Seconds are offered at any time of the day or night, 365 days a year. It’s a win-win situation for all parties involved!

* * * * * * * *

Learn more about Greg Weiss here.

Reputation speedometer

Employer Attitudes to Outplacement

Between March 2012 and May 2013 I met with many Heads of HR and peer C-Suite executives across Sydney and Melbourne. For those that are unaware, these are the two main commercial cities of Australia.

During that time, I polled many of them on their attitudes to outplacement and career transition support.

The sample size was made up of 80 Heads of HR. All are from the private sector and employ at least 500 people.

Here are the top line statistics:

  • 95% of Heads of HR believed it was the right thing for employers to look after the employees they were letting go.
  • 75% of employers offered outplacement to departing senior level employees.
  • 10% offered outplacement to all levels of staff, regardless of level.
  • 80% of employers provided some form of outplacement, primarily doing so as it 'ticked the box'.
  • The 90% who did not offer outplacement or career transition support to all staff did not do so, because the cost of those programs was too high as a percentage of the departing employees’ employment cost.
  • 85% of outplacement offered for senior staff ranged between 1 – 3 months.
  • 80% of outplacement services for lower level staff lasted up to 1 month.

What does this mean?

CareerSupport365 | Employer Attitudes to OutplacementIt is probably no surprise that the provision of career transition support has traditionally remained the preserve of the upper middle and senior level departing employee. The majority of those who are offered outplacement are paid upwards of $90,000 per annum.

The vast majority of Heads of HR place a high value on the duty to care for employees they are letting go.

However the upfront costs of engaging outplacement are perceived as high. Regardless of the value of treating employees well, and doing the right thing, the business typically found it hard to justify the cost of engaging the services of an outplacement firm – and therefore did not do so.

Research shows that it has somewhat been the exception for employers to offer outplacement to all staff. (Note: The companies that did so were in the financial services, telecommunications, and high-end professional services sectors.)

It would appear that executives responsible for the financial results of the company drive the decision to offer career transition support over and above the human aspects - and make those decisions based mostly on the upfront cost-benefit of doing so.

Another way of looking at career transition support

CareerSupport365 | Employer Attitudes to OutplacementThe increasing prevalence of web sites, such as glassdoor.com and vault.com, mean that former employees have an opportunity to rank their former employer. Regardless of the role they held upon leaving, an Admin Clerk or a CMO carry the same weight on these web sites.

In a separate CareerSupport365 survey across 492 people who recently lost their jobs, we found that 89 percent of those laid off employees said they would have felt ‘much more positive’ towards their employer had their former employer provided them with outplacement or career transition support.

The online impact of ‘peeved’ former employees venting their feelings about their former employers and damaging an employer brand is greater today than ever before. And this risk will increase as these so called online complaints departments grow in numbers, penetration across the population and influence.

That a majority of employees would feel better towards their former employer with more than just receiving a pay out, and that glassdoor.com and other sites exist, strongly suggests there is a case for Heads of HR to push the point of offering outplacement to all employees being let go.

CareerSupport365 believes that this is the case and can also deliver outplacement to all employees at a cost in hundreds of dollars per person, which lasts for 365 days.

* * * * * * * *

Greg Weiss is the Founder of CareerSupport365. Learn more about Greg Weiss here.

Email Greg Weiss via gregw@careersupport365.com

User Generated Content Sites

User Generated Content sites. Your Employer Brand Is at Risk.

User Generated Content (UGC) is not a new phenomenon.  Many of us are familiar with sites that rely on UGC. Here are some examples.

  • If you are looking for a restaurant in your local area, then you can rely on Urbanspoon or Yelp for ratings and reviews from users.
  • If you are interested in choosing which movie you'd like to watch with a good degree of confidence, then you might draw on the UGC rankings and reviews on IMDB or Rottentomatoes
  • Are you interested in buying an app from iTunes or Google Play? You to do so or stop doing so because the UGC rankings on that App were mixed or poor.

New Frontier in UGC

One of the newest frontiers of UGC is the anonymous ranking of companies. It’s not just restaurants, movies or apps that are being ranked. It’s now employers whose brands are being praised and buoyed or trashed and exposed online.

Glassdoor and other employer sites

CareerSupport365 | User Generated Content Sites: Glassdoor

Take Glassdoor as an example. Their website says:

“Glassdoor is a free jobs and career community that offers the world an inside look at jobs and companies. What sets us apart is our "employee generated content" – anonymous salaries, company reviews, interview questions, and more – all posted by employees, job seekers, and sometimes the companies themselves. Now with nearly 3 million salaries and reviews, you have all the information you might need to make your next career decision."

It’s free to join Glassdoor.

Based on your preferences, you can review companies that you might be interested. The site also encourages users to anonymously add to the site’s UGC content, helping to continue to refresh and keep current the content appearing on the Glassdoor site.

I encourage you to also visit Glassdoor. It might be an eye opener to what is being said about your own employer. If nothing is being said now, then it is only a matter of time. The real question is what will be said?

Regardless of whether the content is accurate or not, Glassdoor and other UGC sites play on the adage: ‘perception is reality.’ What visitors read is the perception that they form of a company’s employer brand.

As Groupon was amongst the first in the group coupon business, Glassdoor is the current leader of many other web sites, like Yelp and Vault that are now moving in to this space. Online reputation will become central to the ongoing sustainability of companies in the future.

Although many companies have policies that prohibit or restrict what current employees say about their current company online, this is hard to enforce - especially when Glassdoor encourages anonymous postings. It's even harder to enforce when the posting is made by former employees - who might not feel positive about their prior employer.

CareerSupport365 conducted research between April and May 2013 across almost 500 people who had lost their jobs. Research took place in 3 major cities (Sydney, LA and Vancouver).  We found that there was a high likelihood for past employees who felt resentful about their prior employer to visit sites like Glassdoor and rank their former employers poorly. If you are interested to receive a copy of this research white paper before it gets published, sign up here.

Why is this important?

Glassdoor and other employer UGC sites have the potential to sway perception and opinion of anyone who reads the reviews.

This includes potential future employees as well as current and prospective clients.

What can you do?

One way to mitigate risk is to treat people you are exiting from your company with the dignity they deserve and with the employer demonstrating a duty to care. Doing so reduces ill feelings towards the company and the risk to the employer brand caused by venting disgruntled employees. A leading reputation expert, Leslie Gaines Ross, "companies should be doing the right thing...which will help provide them with a softer landing for reputational falls from grace."

Find out more!

* * * * * * * *

Want to do more to protect your online brand reputation?

Learn more about Greg Weiss here.

Email Greg Weiss at gregw@careersuppor365.com

Contact Us

You can phone us or use the enquiry form to find out more.

Please be sure to enter your contact information accurately to avoid delays in our staff responding.

Is your business prepared for COVID-19?

We've created a comprehensive COVID-19 preparedness toolkit, to help you ensure you're giving your departing employees the best chance of landing on their feet if you need to downsize as a result of the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Fill in your details and over the next 5 days, we'll send you 5 eBooks to help you navigate this difficult time.

Success. You'll receive your first email from us shortly.