What is Outplacement?
Outplacement is a service offered by companies to outbound employees. The idea is to help lessen the impact and stress on individuals resulting from the layoff or redundancy.
Businesses providing outplacement services reassure people working at the company that they are set up to succeed. Outplacement services include a series of tools designed to help exiting employees find their next opportunity more quickly.
By nature, businesses usually offer outplacement during the layoff process as part of the severance package. Offering outplacement helps reduce some tension typically present in layoffs and permanent reductions in the workforce, helping protect the corporate and employer branding.
Company layoffs, especially during an unstable global economy, are a common procedure. What isn’t talked about are the risks that come with it – beginning with the legal risks involved. Employers who hire after a round of layoffs might be prone to wage disparities if they are paying new hires more than existing employees who stayed with them during uncertain times. Secondly, a round of layoffs often leads to employers forgetting about existing employees who made it through those tough times with them. Failure to deal with how they’re feeling may lead to even more resignations and a higher turnover rate. To prevent the following, employers should spend time continuously enhancing the productivity of existing employees instead of focusing on new hires. With the right outplacement procedure in hand, the following are easily avoidable.
Taking Meta as a prime example, who in November 2022 has confirmed that they will be laying off 13% of the workforce globally, amounting to over 11,000 employees – which is the biggest round of layoffs they have ever carried out. CEO Mark Zuckerberg, in his apologetic letter shared to employees explains that the company is, “taking a number of additional steps to become a leaner and more efficient company by cutting discretionary spending and extending our hiring freeze through Q1 of 2023.”
To ensure the laid off employees know what happens next, Zuckerberg explains, “Every affected employee will have the opportunity to speak with someone to get their questions answered and join information sessions. Some of the details for US employees include: severance, PTO, RSU vesting, health insurance, career services, and immigration support. Outside of the US, support will be similar.”
Key Risks Outplacement Services Can Help Prevent
Successful corporations know the value of employer branding and how it suffers the most from bad publicity. However, many organisations in Asia have yet to catch on to this concept. Here are some statistics to demonstrate the risk companies run into a poor outbound experience.
1. Annihilating your online presence
50% of employees will post about their employers online (WERSM), this is especially true for disgruntled employees. By providing outplacement support to departing employees, you not only help them but also help reduce the amount of negative publicity.
2. Hemorrhaging company morale and productivity
You are mistaken if you thought redundancies only affects the people who are leaving. Remaining or “surviving” employees of redundancy is usually met by anxiety, guilt, and anger. As a result (according to Harvard Business Review) they display a…
- 41% decline in job satisfaction
- 36% decline in organizational commitment
- 20% decline in job performance
3. Corporate distrust can shoot up employee attrition exponentially
A poorly handled redundancy can leave remaining employees feeling they’ve had the rug pulled out from under their feet. This loss of trust leads to anxiety, encouraging many to scout for opportunities elsewhere. According to a study by the Harvard Business Review, a 1% downsizing in the workforce leads to a 31% increase in voluntary turnover the next year.
What are the Key ROIs for Outplacement Services?
There aren’t many companies that succeed in the realm of employer branding quite like Google. As a result, people want to work for them, making it easy for them to attract and retain key talent.
Granted, outplacement alone will not make you the next Meta, but it pushes your organisation in the right direction. So how does outplacement do this?
Outplacement helps businesses
manage their employer branding both
externally and internally.
In a time when people have learned to tune out blatant advertising, word of mouth becomes immensely powerful.
For individuals laid off following a typical layoff procedure, the biggest threat to your company comes in the period between jobs. When prolonged, it is easy to become scornful, festering negative feelings towards being let go.
With outplacement, instead of leaving employees to their own devices, you’re providing them with what they need to make that transition. According to a study published by the American Psychological Associations, job seekers land 2.67x faster when provided job search assistance.
This helps minimise the likelihood of ex-employees growing resentful towards your company and tarnishing your employer brand.
Although we’ve been talking a lot about external impacts, outplacement also helps secure your internal workforce. Poor offboarding practices reflect badly on your company, which is seen by your internal staff. In fact, people lose trust when redundancies are handled badly. 61% of surviving employees (Yes, people still in the company) believe their company’s prospects are worse after a redundancy.
Outplacement is a simple solution that reduces the chance of soiling your employer branding. What you need to do is communicate to all parties their importance by demonstrating the thought and care through outplacement services.
In summary, outplacement services bring about the following ROIs. Have an upcoming workforce restructuring? Links HR Outsourcing can help you with our line of HR services, including outplacement services and employer branding. Get in touch today!
Identify Your Key Goals
Before the actual outplacement session you need to identify the key goals and messages you would like to convey to outbound employees. This will help you create a more concise program and drive in your employer brand.
Have a Clear Understanding of the Package
There are different outplacement services in the market. Make sure you are familiar with the different package offerings and what they entail. If you’re uncertain, it is always a good idea to connect with one of the representatives to learn more.
Find a Service Provider with Experience
Experience goes a long way. When looking for an outplacement service provider, make sure to partner with someone who understands your industry and the local market. Some outplacement providers will partner with recruiters, which will further help speed up the transition, minimising your company’s risk of having disgruntled ex-staffers.
Get in touch with one of our professional consultants to see how we can help streamline your HR operation today! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
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