It may seem counterintuitive to invest in the welfare of departing employees, particularly when the reason for redundancies is to cut costs. However, there is growing recognition that bespoke outplacement services - expert support in choosing and finding new jobs for those who have been made redundant - can deliver a strong return on investment for employers.
A bespoke outplacement service places the individual at the heart of the service, rather than merely 'processing' them through a predetermined path of theory-based workshops which leave the individual asking themselves 'so how does this affect me?' This form of outplacement does not have a set number of meetings or time duration therefore it is there for people when they need it the most.
The outplacement market has become commoditised with some providers offering half day group outplacement workshops for as little as £100 per person. But research shows that a personal, comprehensive outplacement programme is an investment in morale, productivity and profits. Here's the business case for delivering this type of outplacement solution to minimise the impact of downsizing:
When redundancies are made, the morale of remaining employees can be dramatically affected due to a rise in workload, loyalty towards lost colleagues and fear of future job cuts. An outplacement programme which positively impacts the wellbeing of leavers and their ability to find new employment will improve morale in the business. The result is greater productivity and more discretionary effort from 'survivors'.
From the moment rumours of redundancy start to the transition period after leavers have gone, employee attrition is likely to rise as employees leave a perceived 'high risk workplace' or 'unfair employer'. Typically turnover is highest among those you least wish to lose. A high touch outplacement programme earns trust and reduces the likelihood of you losing talented employees.
Employees who feel the company has treated them unfairly during the redundancy process are likely to settle their grievance in a tribunal - and rulings are favouring employees more often. An outplacement service can reduce perceptions of mistreatment and decrease the likelihood of a tribunal.
Supporting departing employees is an important part of your overall employer and consumer brand. Some organisations have notified its people of redundancies by text message, causing long term damage to the public face of the business and disenfranchising employees. Doing the right thing is more than just good PR - it's long term business thinking that will stand the test of time. Likewise, cutting corners on such a high-stake initiative will almost always prove a poor investment.
Redundancies naturally coincide with increased tension and pressure on an organisation. Outplacement services can help alleviate the stress and time pressure faced by managers, leaving them better able to manage the remaining team and concentrate on the future.
Absenteeism can rise significantly at redundancy time as a response to perceived unfair treatment of former colleagues. An outplacement programme which is well received by leavers will resonate across the whole business and can reduce absenteeism after downsizing by up to 33%.
Connor has a reputation for outplacement services that are industry specific, practical and based on common sense. We have the unique distinction of combining the skill sets of front-line recruiters, trainers and industry practitioners together with extensive occupational counselling experience. These skills mean we are ideally placed to help people face the challenges of the current job market, whether finding a new role, looking at changing career or setting up their own business.
Call us today for an initial conversation about how we can help support people who are leaving your organisation - voluntarily or involuntarily - to move on quickly and confidently.