Outplacement is support which organisations can put in place for their employees when going through termination processes (such as redundancy), to support them in their search for suitable employment and to reduce any ill-feeling as much as possible.
The type of support which you provide them can be both practical and emotional and is beneficial to both the organisation and the employee.
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What practical support can you offer through outplacement?
CV/ cover letter writing workshops – Making sure they are up-to-date and relevant.
Interview skills development and mock assessment centre sessions – It may have been a while since that person has had an interview, this type of support may make it seem less daunting!
Career coaching – Help that person discover what it is they want to do next and how they get there.
Online profiling – How can they make themselves stand out online, and how can they use social media to find their perfect opportunity?
Pre-retirement courses – It may be the ideal time for that person to start to plan their retirement (this won’t be suitable for everyone).
Time – Allowing time to apply for new positions, interviews, assessments centres, networking, sign on with recruitment agencies, etc.
Training – Allow them the opportunity to upskill.
Other general support can include advice on how to liaise with recruitment agencies, how to negotiate salary, support with understanding the current market, and information on webinars or other online support tools.
What emotional support can you offer?
Employee Assistance Programme (EAP) – This is a benefits programme which tends to allow employees to contact a helpline or online portal for 24-hour well-being support.
Mental Health First Aiders – You may have trained In-House Mental Health First Aiders, make sure that the induvial is reminded of who they are and how to contact them.
Counselling – Change can be scary and there may be a need for professional well-being support to help them through the change. EAPs tend to offer free counselling sessions.
Making sure that person knows where to access any wellbeing support available and who they can talk to in-house about any concerns.
How much does outplacement cost?
Outplacement comes at a cost, whether that’s time or money, and this will depend on the scale of the termination process and who is affected. There are several providers who can tailor outplacement packages specific to your needs, either online or in person. To reduce the cost, you could look to see what is already available to you, for example, you may already have an EAP in place or you may have the skills in-house to train and coach yourselves.
The benefits of outplacement
Despite the expense, the benefits of outplacement definitely outweighs the cost and should be something which is considered and here’s why:
To mitigate risk
Being made redundant can be upsetting for people and even if you do follow the right legal procedures, some will try their best to fight it. Putting support in place can reduce likely hood of an unfair dismissal claim.
Minimising disruption to productivity
Termination processes such as restructures can involve lengthy consultation and notice periods, meaning that there will be a period of time when those affected are still apart of the business. If there is good outplacement support, it’s more likely to encourage those affected to continue to work to the best of their ability.
Outplacement shows you care!
The whole process of the employee life cycle is important and a positive experience should be prioritised right through to the end. Remember your company values and make sure they are applied!
Those not affected by the redundancy will see how the process is being managed and how others are being treated and if they see the level of support applied, it will avoid worry, keep up productivity and maintain loyalty for their role and the organisation.
The purpose of redundancy is normally to cut cost, putting support in place could potentially reduce the time that the process of exiting takes, which will reduce cost.
Protecting your reputation
Finally, and perhaps most importantly, reputation! Think about the messages which that person is going to deliver to their friends, family, colleagues and anyone else. You will want to be known as a caring employer who invests in their people, despite any situation or circumstance.
If you need any support with outplacement for your team, please contact a member of our experienced MAD-HR team today.