Employee Exit Process - Employee Offboarding Checklist

Employee Exit Process: Employee Offboarding Checklist (2022)

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The Ultimate Guide to Employee Offboarding Checklist 2022:


The day comes for almost every organization where they must let go of an employee and move on. Whether the employee has resigned or been terminated, you as the HR manager have to handle the employee’s offboarding legal, fair, and timely process. An employee offboarding checklist will be handy for HR and the company during this period of offboarding. HR needs to handle this sensitive situation while making sure to maintain the company’s brand image.


So the question is, where do you start? With the employee exit process, Of course.


Many a time, the offboarding Process can become complicated. To streamline this Process of HR, you can use, employee offboarding checklist. This allows the HR professionals to make sure that no step of the Process is missed.


Having a job handover checklist along with ready-made exit interview questions and an employee offboarding process that has been created beforehand will make the process easier.


The StartupHR Toolkit does this by making all HR processes more manageable by providing you with 1800+ HR documents of HR policies, letters, calculators, and more. This will save your time and effort while saving your company’s money.

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    Definition of the Employee exit process


    The term offboarding in the field of human resources refers to the process of someone leaving the organization. The process can be voluntary or involuntary. The term is usually used when a human resource exits a company.


    Employee offboarding is an important part of the HR professional’s duty. The employee offboarding process should be handled with grace and sensitivity. This is the last interaction that an employee has with the company, therefore, it is important for the employee to feel valued during the process. It is also the last chance for the company to retain the employee which puts the HR professional in a very interesting position.


    Importance of An Employee Exit Checklist


    Companies often face the request of wilful resignation or are bound to the forceful sacking of employees. The reasons that trigger them are different. However, HR has to maintain the retention rate of the company lest the recruitment budgets would exceed. In the case of layoffs or sacking, it is somehow a bitter-sweet process of letting people go.


    The reasons could be a company not performing well is asking people to leave or an employee not performing and also asked to leave. The circumstances that follow are not cordial to all. There might be a hint of vengeance or anger or the disillusionment of an unfair practice. All this could boomerang if the employee offboarding checklist process is incorrect.


    Preparing the “Employee Exit Process” Checklist is a very detailed process and should not be overlooked in the context of the after-effects. Different positions are subject to varying levels of the offboarding process. However, let us understand the uniform process and the details of the employee offboarding checklist.

    employee exit checklist

    6 Steps to Employee Exit Process Checklist


    1. Communication

    First and foremost, If the resigning employee communicates to his senior about his decided resignation. The senior person not only tries to talk about the resignation but also tries to retain the employee.


    However, if the employee has made up their mind to leave, he/she has to further communicate about the resignation to the HR Department. The HR department must set a meeting to discuss the decision with the employee and their senior.


    This gives the employee the space to discuss their problems and present their wants. Giving the company a chance to retain them. After that, if the employee would still like to go ahead with the further process they submit their resignation in writing to the HR department.


    The HR department then communicates the same with the employee’s team and necessary departments. Setting things in motion for a smooth transfer of work. Furthermore, the HR department then shares the employee’s exit date with the manager.


    2. Documentation / Paperwork

    The HR department then takes the process further and focuses on the documentation of the employee. This is one of the most important steps of the process and if done correctly, will save a lot of time in the future. Managing and documenting the leaving employee’s letter, offer letter, details and benefits is extremely important. The department should have the employee’s resignation letter before taking steps forward.

    Furthermore, this is the right time to check whether their documents are in order. If they aren’t it is possible that there won’t be a time in the future to be able to fill those details in. Which can be extremely troublesome in the future.


    Few things that the HR department should check before the employee’s last day in the office are :


    1. Their signed resignation letter or acknowledgment of the termination letter.

    2. Their Non-Disclosure Agreement along with all relevant forms for the company’s security.

    3. The employee benefits that will continue

    4. Whether the employee has any salary or conveys due.

    5. A final pay-check is prepared, which includes the documentation.

    6. The HR drafts the employee’s Testimonial or popularly known as Experience letter 

     7. After all, the employee’s confirmation of receiving the Experience letter. 


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    3. Knowledge Transfer

    In case the employee’s replacement has been recruited before their leaving date then the leaving employee can share their knowledge with the new employee. The company will definitely benefit from scheduling a meeting between the two employees. The leaving employee can share their expertise with the new hire and show them some critical aspects of the role. This can even give them a clear expectation of the new role. Furthermore, they might pick up insights that cannot be covered in a standard training program.


    Job Handover Checklist

    The creation of a job handover cannot be done in a single day. Therefore, it is the duty of the HR department to help the exiting employee make a thorough job handover document. It should be a thorough document and that also helps the new employee to take over the role and the responsibilities. Also Provide the new employee with all the necessary information regarding their role is extremely important.


    Ensure that the exiting employee documents the tasks and divides them with heading and subheadings. This will help the new employee keep track of the tasks easier. Furthermore, mention the important details that the employee will require to fulfil their tasks. Give them a brief background about the clients and their expectations.

    Furthermore, mention the ongoing tasks along with the priority tasks under a different heading. This will give the employee an idea about where they should start.

    1. Contacts

    1. Clients

    2. Vendor

    3. Support employees

    4. Important Email IDs

    2. General

    1. Daily duties

    2. Weekly duties

    3. Monthly duties

    4. Protocols

    5. Roles

    6. Supervisor to report to

    7. Process flows

    3. Documents

    1. Important documents

    2. Checklists

    3. Client presentations as well as background information

    4. Details

    5. Department documents

    6. Logbooks

    7. Link to important documents

    4. Recover Company Assets

    When an employee leaves an organization it is the HR department’s responsibility to confirm that all the company assets have been recovered from the employee before their leaving date. This could include company laptops, computers, uniforms, keys or more. The reporting authority must also reclaim company files, folders, swipe cards, ID cards, and other inventory of supplies.


    If there are complications with the recovery of assets the HR department can also offer a buy-in option to the employee


    5. Update IT permissions and access

    The HR department must work with the IT department to ensure that the employee’s employee login, access to their PC and other information is no longer available to them. It is also a common practice to redirect their emails or add an “out of office” message to it for a short duration of time.


    Furthermore, sensitive credentials that are known to the employee should be changed and their entrance access should be revoked. If the employee handles clients then the HR department must also decide whether the clients should be informed about the same or not. These are very important tasks to ensure the security of the company


    6. Exit Interview

    The exit interview is an essential part of the employee offboarding checklist. Also, It is necessary to conduct an Exit Interview as a part of the employee off-boarding process. An exit interview is the last communication link with the employee when he/she is still part of the organization. Again, HR can try to understand why and what of the employee’s situation, checking any final chances of retaining the employee.


    A member of the HR department tries to understand the true reason for their departure. It is also the final chance of retaining the employee. A good company understands that taking feedback from a leaving employee is important. Furthermore, it is important to work on those areas to produce better results.


    It is important to hear what the exiting employee has to say. Not only employees are the most honest in their exit interviews but also can give you valuable insight into your company.


    Furthermore, you can use that information to improve the existing employee retention strategies or make new ones.


    1. What makes you want to move on from the company?

    2. What did you like about the role?

    3. What did you dislike about your role?

    4. What ultimately led you to accept the new job?

    5. How can we support the new employee in your role better?

    6. Did you have the necessary tools as well as equipment required for your role?

    7. Also, How can we improve our company culture?

    8. Would you like to share any concerns about the company with us?

    Employee Offboarding Checklist
    Employee Offboarding Checklist

    Exit Interview is conducted to explore the following parameters:


    1. Check the very reason for resignation.

    2. Adherence to all compliances.

    3. Gain insights into improving the company culture.

    4. Identify problem areas as well as work on them to improve retention.

    5. Also, manage turnover cost by trying to retain the employee


    Senior Management Employee Offboarding Checklist:


    In case of Senior Management employees, the Employee Offboarding Checklist is different and entails a more planned approach.


    1. Senior management on-boarding and off-boarding mostly happen in closed rooms. The idea of rudderless management might shake the company’s market situation as well as bring insecurities in the employees. Therefore, until the company is identifying a successor, the news is retained in a closed circuit.


    2. Some companies have already identified successors, but need to groom them on the job and also, it should be communicated to the resigning employee to handhold the successor to fit in the block and avoid the interim gap.


    3. Companies that have not identified a successor should, not only, bring succession planning as a healthy and default process in the organization but also ensure a gap-free off-boarding operation.


    4. Senior Management resignations need informing various channels such as head office, associates, vendors & shareholders.


    5. Also, Publishing the Senior Management resignation in Print Medium (Newspaper) still public notice is a mandatory process.


    6. Cross-teams, the management employee, is working in although should be kept in the loop to ascertain the legal and obliging paperwork and permissions thereof.


    7.  Senior Management employee exit process not only be carried out by experienced hands but also the image they would spread of the company could build or shatter.


    Employee Offboarding Checklist Guidelines That Consider The Finer Nuances.


    1. What if a resigning employee is convinced and wants to retain back?

    2. What is the process when an onsite employee wants to resign?

    3. Draft the details incorporated in a Non-Disclosure Agreement.

    4. Who will be training the replacement for the employee?

    5. What if the employee wants to leave before the set notice period?

    6. Also, check the list of documentation the employee should hand over before full and final settlement.


     Risk of Wrong Employee Offboarding Checklist:


    Wrong offboarding can trigger a catastrophe; the company might not be able to deal with. Therefore, having an employee exit process helps streamline the process and excellent execution.


    a. If a resigning employee does not settle with the exit process over finer nuances, discrepancies, unsettled claims, unbiased approach or other factors, he/she can go and spread the wrong word in his/her networking circles which can further impact the company’s image.


    b. If processor payments stretch beyond timelines, the employee might lose out on the next opportunity. Some companies hold on to the resignation letter and experience letter, which is a mandatory document provided that to the next company the employee, is joining. This delay could deliberately jeopardize the employee’s chance of retaining the new job.


    c. Resigning employees have either got a better opportunity or leaving the organization due to culture clash or office politics, and this all comes out at the exit interview. There is a high chance this employee might not review the company in good books on social platforms or in his immediate industry circles.


    d. Also, Consider data leaks of critical information as the biggest jeopardy an unsatisfied employee can do after leaving the company.


    1. Company Policy of Rehire

    Some companies have a policy of rehiring. Though, bringing back an employee who has left you at one point in time is an apprehensive task. However, maintaining records of an ex-employee on performance, the reason for leaving, and other vital parameters can help decide if the company should rehire an employee.


    2. Maintaining the bridges

    It is imperative to remember that a resigning employee is just moving out of the organization and its influence, yet remains to be the same person.  However, HR should not only maintain the employee in the database as an ex-employee but also keep in touch with records.


    3. The circle effect

    Recruitment, as well as resignation, are a circle effect and inherently part of any organization. Additionally, a transparent process and documentation ensure an enhanced experience, be it recruitment or resignation.


    4. The interim head

    Some employees do not even serve the notice period for fear of losing the next lucrative job because of immediate joining. So, that manager and above positions, an interim responsibility and reporting head be shall depute to fill in the gaps.


    5. Handling Critical Offboarding Scenarios

    When a company sacks an employee, it could be for various reasons, not only productivity. After all, we are dealing with employees who are humans. Companies terminate employees on immediate notice due to various reasons like – failing to comply with company laws, involvement in a legal matter that tarnishes the company’s image, unethical practices, sexual harassment, fraud, and physical harm to fellow employees.

    A sacked employee might also get into a legal battle with a client for unfair termination.


    The Employee Offboarding Checklist should incorporate particular documents for the above unforeseen and exceptional cases. Legal guidance provided that acting guideline helps aid and ease such a process.


    Employee Offboarding Checklist Should Also Include the Following Documentation:


    1. PF & ESIC transfer.

    2. PF & ESIC are the valued possessions of an employee that are transferrable from one organization to another. Also, HR ensures that this transfer is a smooth process for the employees.

    3. The company should share transfer or offloading options, in case of employee loans if any.

    4. Also, Medical claims shall settle off.

    5. Pending incentives and bonuses if any, should be effected under relevant documentation and cleared off.


    Let the exiting employee nurture the excellent time spent with your organization. In addition, a farewell is the least any company can give to its exiting employee. More prominent companies, as a policy, acknowledge the length of an employee service by giving placards and mementos in the company award functions.

    Finally, out of the company, systems, and processes, a gift of good memories and experience is all an employee can retain.


    Sooner or later every company has an offboarding checklist from the company. In addition, having a pre-created process for the same will help streamline the process and make it easier to complete. Offboarding of human resources is an important process that should be carried out with utmost precision and care. The employee exit process is often ignored also, it is an important task and should be done diligently.


    The company can also include a farewell for its employees within the company policy. Sending an employee off with good memories is a good way to have a good last impression on the employee. More prominent companies, as a policy, acknowledge the length of an employee service by giving placards and mementos in the company award functions. Leaving the employee with something that helps them look back at their time with the company.

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