Develop an Offboarding Plan to Manage Risk and Transition Employees Effectively

Plan ahead to promote positive departure experiences and minimize the impact of involuntary turnover.


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Your Challenge

  • Employee exits, whether voluntary or involuntary, are an inevitable part of conducting business.
  • Few organizations have done enough to adequately prepare for the inevitability of short-notice departures.

Our Advice

Critical Insight

  • The average departure notice time is two weeks or less, often not enough time to offboard effectively. As a result, most organizations don’t enable the passing of required knowledge from one employee to another before a departure. If you don’t plan to capture critical knowledge prior to the departure notice being given, you risk knowledge loss in an age when knowledge is often an organization’s competitive differentiator.
  • A well defined offboarding process will help mitigate the risks associated with involuntary turnover, as well as protecting organizational knowledge from loss and corporate brand from negative employee departures.
  • Positive departure experiences will develop brand ambassadors, encourage referrals, and promote positive word of mouth, often increasing the potential for future rehiring. 

Impact and Result

  • Create an offboarding plan to manage departures effectively while protecting your corporate brand, retaining organizational knowledge, and preventing exposure to risk.
  • A positive offboarding experience will promote your employer brand and increase the likelihood of referrals, high quality applicants, and rehiring.
  • McLean & Company has identified key issues in the offboarding process, and we highlight the necessary considerations pre-, during, and post- employee departure. 

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See how all the steps you need to take come together, with tools and advice to help with each task on your list.

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Get to Action

  1. Document the pre-departure steps of the offboarding plan

    Standardize offboarding policies and procedures.

  2. Develop a plan for the departure stage of offboarding

    Create offboarding tools to ensure consistency and minimize risk.

  3. Create a post-departure offboarding plan

    Establish strategies to build morale after an employee departure and continuously improve the offboarding plan.

Guided Implementation icon Guided Implementation

This guided implementation is a four call advisory process.

    Guided Implementation #1 - Pre-departure phase

  • Call #1: Review project rationale and discuss current offboarding policies and procedures.

  • Guided Implementation #2 - Departure phase

  • Call #1: Review communication plan and departing document draft.

  • Call #2: Discuss how to follow up on and revise the offboarding checklist.

  • Guided Implementation #3 - Post-departure phase

  • Call #1: Discuss the auditing process to ensure efficiency and efficacy.

Onsite Workshop

Module 1: Develop an Offboarding Plan

The Purpose

  • Create and document policies to ensure consistency and minimize risk.
  • Identify termination procedures and discuss termination communication.
  • Create procedures to facilitate the transfer of important information.
  • Develop exit survey and exit interview procedures.
  • Customize tools to ensure smooth departures.

Key Benefits Achieved

  • Develop customized, standardized offboarding policies, procedures, and tools.
  • Mitigate the risks of voluntary departures through standardized knowledge transfer templates.
  • Mitigate the risks associated with involuntary turnover through standard processes and tools.
  • Minimize the negative spillover of the departure to team members.
  • Protect your organizational brand with respectful offboarding.
  • Leverage alumni as brand ambassadors. 

Activities: Outputs:
1.1 Assess your need for a formal offboarding program.
1.2 Develop a list of your organization’s required policies and identify the necessary tasks.
  • Defined offboarding-related policies, with documented policy and process owners and timelines
1.3 Develop a communication plan to address voluntary departures.
  • Customized offboarding communication plan
1.4 Customize the Knowledge Transfer Template for your organization.
  • Customized knowledge transfer process
1.5 Customize the Exit Interview Template for your organization.
  • Customized Exit Interview Template
1.6 Tailor the Employee Departure Checklist Tool to ensure offboarding efficacy.
  • Tailored Employee Departure Checklist
1.7 Draft an Exit Summary document to finalize the offboarding details for the departing employee.
  • Customized Exit Summary document
1.8 Brainstorm ways to build morale in your team after an employee departure.
  • Documented initiatives to rebuild team morale post-departure

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Onsite Workshops offer an easy way to accelerate your project. If you are unable to do the project yourself, and a Guided Implementation isn’t enough, we offer low-cost onsite delivery of our Project Workshops. We take you through every phase of your project and ensure that you have a road map in place to complete your project successfully.

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