Exit Interviews: Are They Worth the Time, Money, and Resources? (Part II)

entrance to old employer

Yesterday, we started our series on exit interviews.

As we mentioned, take a survey among the HR world, and you’ll find that opinions over the merits and disadvantages of exit interviews run all over the board. As such, it can be hard for those outside of the debate to really make an educated decision on whether or not exit interviews are right for them.

That’s why we thought we’d give you a brief guide on the matter. We already talked a little bit about the pros, so to balance things out, we thought it would only make sense to give you the cons as well. Take a look below:

The Cons of Exit Interviews 

  • Misleading feedback. In a perfect world, all the feedback we would get during an exit interview would actually be useful. Unfortunately, though, that isn’t always the case. 

    Even though your employee is leaving, it doesn’t mean that they’ll be honest and straightforward with you on the time they spent working in the company. In some instances, this can be because they’re afraid of how it will affect your future recommendation, or perhaps because they’re just too jaded/burnt out and don’t feel the need to go through the exit interview process. 

    As a result, you’ll most likely get answers along the lines of “everything was great, it just didn’t work out” to “I hate this place and would never consider working here again,” both of which provide little to no concrete feedback that you can actually use to improve your company.

  • Shows lack of foresight. Another issue that is raised when it comes to exit interviews is that it shows a lack of foresight on the part of the company. It’s obviously much too late to actually do anything to keep your employee from leaving, and taking the time to prevent future hires from going down the same road seems like a disingenuous effort to tie up loose ends on the part of the former employee. 

    As a result, you end up actually putting your employer brand at risk in some cases. Those who are strongly against exit interviews believe that a proper strategy should’ve been put in place way before the employee ever thought of leaving, which in turn would’ve most likely prevented the turnover from ever happening, saving you the trouble of dealing with any exit interviews.

On Tuesday, we’ll go a little deeper into exit interviews and give you some tips on how to conduct them, as well as alternatives you can take. In the meantime, what do you think about these cons? Are they valid? Let us know by connecting with us on Facebook or Twitter!

photo credit: kevin dooley via photopin cc