By Mark Gonska
You’ve decided to terminate an employee.
Now you’re debating whether or not to offer outplacement services.
More and more –offering outplacement and job search assistance is seen as the “right thing to do.”
While it says a great deal about your corporate culture, providing outplacement and job search assistance as part of your separation agreement makes business sense — there’s no way around it.
Here are 5 business reasons to write outplacement and job search assistance into your separation agreement:
1. Outplacement can reduce the pain. Yours and the displaced employee. On-site outplacement assistance allows you to hand off the terminated employee to a professional who can deliver care in the first 48 hours.
2. Outplacement can protect your reputation. Layoffs and terminations can capture headlines on a slow news day. Providing job search assistance may soften the bad news read by your clients and other stakeholders.
3. Outplacement puts you on solid ground with those who stay. While there are understandable and justifiable business reasons why you’re terminating an employee, if you don’t provide the best possible support for them as they leave, you risk losing support from those who remain, and they may wonder if they’re next.
4.The terminated employee will get a new job faster. When the terminated employee gets a new job faster, they’ll get a new paycheck faster, reducing unemployment compensation, and other costs borne in whole or in part by you, the employer.
5. Outplacement protects against legal claims. When an employer offers outplacement in a separation agreement, it decreases the risk of legal claims against your organization. If the employee never takes advantage of the outplacement services you offer, you can always ask: “Why did you choose not to take advantage of it?” This can be very valuable if there is ever a legal claim.
Regardless of what other benefits: salary continuation, healthcare/COBRA payments you offer, outplacement should be called “job search assistance”.
Always write “outplacement and job search assistance” into your separation agreement — always.