Employee Offboarding Process: A systematic way for organizations to manage the departure of an employee that ensures consistency and reduces risk to the organization. (Also see: Onboarding Process)
"88 percent of information technology workers would take sensitive data with them or abscond with company passwords if they were fired."
A large number of organizations handle employee offboarding, (also known as: "termination procedures" and "off boarding"), through loose, manual processes like emails, phone calls, and private conversations. While there may be an offboarding policy in place, a lax offboarding workflow can be extremely dangerous and puts businesses at risk if the policy doesn't drive the process.
Signs of a Risky Employee Offboarding Process
- Workers who still have access to secure, critical systems post-termination can wreak havoc on the organization's systems.
- Failure to follow proper termination procedures can lead to litigation and leave companies scrambling for documentation and confirmation of procedures being followed.
- Assets can be inadvertently left with the departing employee and difficult to retrieve later.
- Communication breakdowns can lead to gaps in the procedure and headaches for employees and management alike.
- Knowledge transfer, either person-to-person or person-to-system, can be missed and leave departments at risk.
- Other departments can be left out of the loop (finance, payroll, it, etc.) leading to delays and confusion.
Obviously, these are all worst-case scenarios but all it takes is one poorly-managed offboarding procedure to cause serious disruption and financial loss to a business.
And yet, despite the mounting risks of not properly offboarding employees surveys indicate many organizations are leaving gaps in their processes.
- A survey by security firm Cyber-Ark that found "88 percent of information technology workers would take sensitive data with them or abscond with company passwords if they were fired".
- In another survey: it was found that "50% of ex-employees can still access corporate apps."
We have an app for that! Get a headstart on automating your offboarding process with our Offboarding Process App. Just import the app, customize, and launch your new process.
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How Should I Automate the Offboarding Process?
There are many other parts of the offboarding process that should be part of an automated process to prevent lapses and ensure policy consistency.
- Create an offboarding checklist that includes all the potential items, access credentials, keys, accounts, etc. that an employee might have.
- Provide human-initiated termination approvals to avoid the process moving forward unchecked.
- Ensure performance evaluations, disciplinary action forms, and other employee records are in order.
- Decommissioning of access cards and keys.
- Identification and return of company-provided property including hardware and mobile devices.
- Avoid potential lawsuits by ensuring that the compliant procedures are followed and documented across all locations.
- Provide access to local, network and cloud-based files as well as email for the former employee's supervisor.
- Notification of stakeholders (IT, Finance, leadership, etc.)
- Retention of certain technological resources, data, and logs in the event that the former employee or company itself decides to pursue litigation.
- Ensuring that terminated employees no longer collect wages or benefits past their date of separation.
- Ensure receipt of paperwork (non-disclosure, etc.)
- Conduct exit interview or surveys.
- Confirm that information about insurance continuation (COBRA), retirement fund withdrawals, and other benefits matters were discussed.
Ultimately, the benefits of automated the offboarding process are numerous and, combined with a thoughtful, automated onboarding process, can ensure consistency, accuracy, and compliance.
Employee Offboarding Process Example
Integrify customers can download a free Employee Offboarding Template to get a jump start on designing their own customized workflow.
Here's what the process looks like:
Note: The template includes the entire process along with the forms.
If you'd like to discuss your offboarding needs, please let us know and we're happy to provide an assessment and/or demonstration.
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