Why your executive leavers need more outplacement support

If you have senior members of your organisation leaving via redundancy or settlement agreement, you may well have been asked about providing executive outplacement support. It’s easy to fall into the trap of assuming that your outplacement support will look the same for all of your people regardless of seniority, but there are a number of unique considerations that will help you give your departing executives the full range of support they need.

Let’s explore what outplacement services are, how they might differ for your senior individuals, and the benefits to your executive leavers and your business in supporting them through this career transition.

What is outplacement?

Firstly, let’s take a step back and understand what outplacement actually is. Outplacement is a service to support people leaving your organisation, giving them practical career skills, career advice and coaching to help them move on faster and with more confidence than they would otherwise. You can find out more about outplacement in our comprehensive guide, Outplacement Explained.

What’s different about executive outplacement support?

The job market for senior roles is different to the rest of the job market; it’s usually less likely for executive talent roles to be advertised, meaning time to hire can be much longer and processes in general can be more complex. Therefore, it makes sense that executive outplacement support is also a bit different. In our experience, executives value having peer-level conversations with someone that has shared that senior level corporate experience, and also brings a wealth of knowledge about executive search. This can help your leaving executives get clarity on what they want and out-perform their competition.

Practical skills

Whilst senior individuals may not need to complete an application process, they will still need to have a comprehensive CV or career resume. When you have the breadth and depth of experience to have secured senior roles, it can be particularly difficult to distil your career down into the relevant, impactful points needed to position yourself in the best way without ‘waffling’, deviating or lacking impact. You might also find your senior leavers want to try something a bit different but don’t know how to position themselves at a different level or sector, and how to authentically tell their career story. This is where working with an executive outplacement coach can make a huge difference, to help bring the practical skills and experience to get the basics in place, quickly.

A LinkedIn profile is also key in today’s job market, as it allows you to be found by head-hunters or internal recruiters who may be managing the recruitment for senior positions. Having an authentic, impactful profile that demonstrates capability at a senior level AND clearly identifies the kind of roles your executives might be interested in next can really help speed up a job search and uncover opportunities they wouldn’t otherwise have access to.

Preparing for multiple interviews and/or assessments is also more complex at the executive level. Executive outplacement support provides a safe space to not only practice for these different scenarios with proven preparation techniques, but also successfully negotiate the right terms and conditions at the point of offer.

Career advice

One of the things we hear repeatedly in our outplacement work is people seeing their redundancy as an opportunity to do something new, but how do your executives make that happen when all they have ever known is their corporate career? This is where having an impartial sounding board to bounce ideas off and explore possible different career paths can make a huge difference. Exploring the path they could take from their current situation to their ideal future situation, the steps they need to take along the way, and realistic timescales, can all be useful in crafting that fulfilling, purpose-driven next step in their career.

Alternatively, your senior people might want to do something similar to their current role, but in a different environment, or with a different working pattern. Those nearing the end of their career might want to explore a portfolio of roles, take on their first non-executive directorship, or even think about the transition to a happy and healthy retirement. Doing this exploration alongside someone who has been there and done it, either themselves or through supporting many other people to successfully make that leap, gives additional confidence and helps your people see they have done their due diligence and risk analysis before making a change.


With any career transition, there can be a lot of uncertainty and a loss of confidence, and it might surprise you to hear this is particularly true at the senior end of outplacement services. For those later in their career, there can be fears of not finding another senior level role and the change in identity, however temporary, can also be a big limiting factor on one’s productivity. Self-doubt, concerns about external perceptions, the value you bring and practical concerns about paying the mortgage etc, all arise at this point of transition. We also know that using your personal and professional network is a great way to uncover your next career step, but this can feel hard to do when you are thinking about how others might view you and the change in status you might feel your job search brings. Working with an executive coach to work through these mental blocks or challenges helps people move forward with more confidence, clarity, and resilience, on what might be a long journey.

How does executive outplacement benefit my business?

  1. Your senior leavers feel supported by your business, even at this challenging time. Rather than being left to navigate this next step by themselves, you can show your commitment to helping them move on by investing in a service to do just that.
  2. Those around the individual see them being treated well and leaving positively, helping reduce disruption to the wider business, maintain business as usual and reduce any dips in engagement for your retained staff.
  3. Your brand reputation will be preserved or could even be enhanced, which is vital for attracting new hires both now and in the future.
  4. Providing outplacement services to your leavers typically reduces the chance of expensive legal action.

Connor’s executive outplacement service

With Connor’s executive outplacement service, your people are personally and individually matched with an experienced, peer-level career consultant who will work alongside them for as long as it takes to secure their next opportunity or take the next step in their career – whatever what looks like for them. Furthermore, with no limit on the amount of support your people can receive will know they have someone working along them for as long as it takes.

We’re proud that at Connor, all of our outplacement services offer a high touch, high quality service. In addition to the premium 121 support provided by our team of outstanding executive consultants, we are also able to offer additional complementary services to your senior leavers, such as financial planning and modelling to test the viability of a career change, retirement coaching and preparation, mortgage advice and support, and tax advice for that new venture being considered.

Get in touch

If you need to make changes in your business that are going to impact your senior executive population either in the UK or internationally, contact us to find out more about how we can help them – and your business – thrive through this period of change.


More Insights From Connor

Like what you've seen?

Contact us today to see how we can help your business thrive, and people grow, on
01491 414010
or complete the form

We are committed to protecting and preserving the privacy of our visitors when visiting our website or communicating electronically with us.

To find out how we process any personal data we collect from you or that you provide to us through our website, please read our Privacy Policy.