How To Conduct An Exit Interview To Employees

How To Conduct An Exit Interview To Employees

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An exit interview is an excellent opportunity for employees to discuss their entire work experience honestly. When people leave a company or organization, it can be for various reasons. Sometimes they get better offers from other companies and organizations, while others go because they find the work environment unsatisfactory.

By having an exit interview, an employer also gets the opportunity to ask questions and speak honestly with the team members who are about to leave the company. However, there’s a certain etiquette to follow during this interview. This guide will show you how to conduct an exit interview and will give you some interview questions you can ask.  

What Exactly Is An Exit Interview? 

An exit interview is a private meeting between an employee leaving and the company. The interview can be conducted by a member of the human resources team or someone on the management team. 

As mentioned earlier, the purpose of this interview is not only to provide the team member with an opportunity to speak frankly about their entire work experience but also to provide the company and management team with reasons why they are leaving.

It is also an excellent opportunity for both parties to speak frankly about what protocols, rules, or activities can be implemented to improve the day-to-day running at the workplace. With this honest feedback, the company can improve and put programs in place that benefit future hires.

How To Conduct An Exit Interview 

  • Choose The Right Interviewer

Before setting up the exit interview, you need to choose someone to interview the team member leaving. Picking a candidate from the HR department is an excellent choice because they can interview without bias toward the team member.

Having someone from the HR department conduct the exit interview also means they can implement any suggestions and critiques the employer may have. If you don’t think an internal staff member should conduct the exit interview, you can also use an external company or service to conduct the exit interview. Doing this removes the pressure from the employer and the team member. 

The team member will be able to speak frankly, openly, and honestly with the representative from the external company, which can benefit the company as a whole.

  • Prepare Thoroughly

Once you have chosen an interviewer, the next step is thoroughly preparing for the exit interview.  You have to prepare effectively because every team member is unique. Everyone has their own personality. By preparing for the interview, you have all the right questions at hand.

During preparation, look into their roles and responsibilities. By knowing the full scope of their duties, you’ll be able to ask relevant questions. The exit interview is also a private meeting between the team member and the company, so don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as possible.

  • Conduct A Survey

You can also hand out surveys before the exit interview. The survey helps the team member better prepare their responses to different questions you might ask them. It helps keep the exit interview more structured as both parties will understand exactly what might be discussed in the meeting. It is also a great way to gain insight into the employees who are a little more guarded and withdrawn than others.

Some people are more comfortable writing out their responses than talking about them. So, by having the survey, the candidate heading the interview will still know what the team member thinks about the company without speaking about it. It’s the best way to ensure there is no miscommunication before and during the exit interview.

  • Schedule The Interview At A Convenient Time

Once you have fully prepared for the exit interview and have had your survey returned with responses, you can now schedule the interview at a convenient time. Sometimes the team member will go back and forth between the office and the new job opportunity, and scheduling the interview will show the team member that you respect their time.

The team member will also have to honor the appointment, as it’s always better to leave a company on a good note.

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  • Pay Attention And Ask Questions

During the interview, asking as many questions as possible is imperative. Doing this gives you insight into how to improve the day-to-day work environment. While you may ask as many questions as possible, you should also listen closely to their responses. Avoid making assumptions regarding their feedback. If you’re unsure of some of their responses, ask them to elaborate.

This will help you communicate effectively with the team member leaving the company. It also leaves them with the impression that you care about their thoughts and what they think about the company. Here are some great questions you can ask during the exit interview.

  • What did you enjoy about your time here?
  • Do you have any ideas on how the company can improve?
  • What did you think about your manager or the department you worked in?
  • What motivated your decision to leave?
  • Is there anything different you think we should do when orienting new team members?
  • Which team members made a lasting positive impression on you?
  • What circumstances would convince you to stay with us? 
  • Which company policies did you find confusing? 
  • Did your duties stay the same according to your job description? 



By following the tips above, you’ll be able to have an effective exit interview with your team member. You’ll get their honest critiques and feedback about the day-to-day activities at work and gain insight into which areas the companies need to improve. Remember never to make assumptions during the exit interview, and pay attention to what the team member says about their experience.

A successful exit interview should end on a positive note.  It allows companies to look at and reflect on their strengths and weaknesses. By implementing all the information gathered during an exit interview, the company can improve and be better prepared for new hires. It will also provide a good opportunity for company growth.

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