How to create an employee exit survey

How to create an employee exit survey

Get a valuable insight in your company culture through an employee exit survey. Ask the right questions and take proper action. Prevent churn and increase retention.

Who is this article useful for?

  • Company managers,
  • HR specialists,
  • team leads and department heads.

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  • Get inspired by concrete survey questions
  • Discover advantages of regular surveying
  • Learn how you can share the survey
  • Get to know Survio’s features that save tons of your time

Successful companies try to prevent loss of experienced and senior employees by conducting regular surveys on satisfaction, self-evaluation or motivation. In the event that an employee decides to leave, HR professionals use an employee exit survey to identify the cause and seek a remedy to reduce the employee turnover rate and prevent churn in the future.

This type of survey gives an employee who leaves a job space to give honest feedback and without any penalty criticize what does not work in the company or where they see any specific problems. In addition, an experienced manager or HR specialist sees a valuable opportunity for improvement and finding solutions to prevent undesirable situations, so that other employees do not need to consider leaving the company.

Added value or how to benefit from an employee exit survey

Finding reliable and qualified employees is becoming increasingly difficult and is costly, not just financially. A leaving employee thus means a lost investment for the company. Without trying to prevent this situation, problems will persist, the cycle of recruitment and employee selection, including their training, will be repeated and costs will increase.

If you hold responsibility for human resources, employee surveys are a useful tool to measure employee satisfaction, loyalty and motivation. Use their ideas and comments to create a healthy work environment and comfortable conditions in your company. Try other types of surveys related to this topic:

We have also prepared a number of use cases focusing on the above and other domains. Feel free to get inspiration and put useful tips or how-tos in practice when doing research applying Survio as the surveying platform.

Before you start creating a survey

First, write down what information you need from the employee and for which areas within the corporate environment you need their evaluation. Based on that, start creating employee exit interview questions and the structure of the entire survey.

Define the areas you want to cover and inquire about in the survey, for example:

It is essential to have a clear idea of the survey structure for several reasons:

  1. it will help you formulate questions – what and how to ask;
  2. you get a clear idea where to place each question – the sequence of questions and their continuity will make it easier for employees to complete the survey;
  3. the responses will be comprehensible for you, which you will appreciate when evaluating the survey (including comparing the responses to individual questions over time);
  4. you can be sure that you have asked all the essential questions.

Reading the article on How to create a survey, asking the right questions, making appropriate settings for effective data collection or applying an employee exit survey template is a powerful combo to make surveying truly effortless for you.

Tip: Pay attention to the survey’s welcome page. State clearly what the aim of the employee exit survey is and why you are asking them to fill it out. Don’t forget to thank them for their willingness to share their opinions and spending time with your survey.

An example of an introductory text on a survey's welcome page

To get accurate answers means to ask right

In order to get a clear response from the employee, it is important to be able to ask the right questions and choose the appropriate from a palette of 19 question types that you can use in Survio. Explore closed-ended and open-ended questions, or ranking questions. Find out how to utilize star rating, Net Promoter Score, matrix questions and other types to capture genuine feedback.

Transform this output that you receive into a source of further investigation and focus on other employees to find out whether they are not struggling with a similar issue, or not. Simply use an employee satisfaction survey. You may arrive at opening the following areas:

An example of a single-choice question
An example of a ranking question
An example of a single-choice question
An example of a star rating question

3 stars indicate doubts. For you, it is an impulse to deal with this issue more in the future. 2 stars or lower require your immediate attention. The funds you invest in these training sessions are not paying off. Keep asking to get to the real cause.

Tip: Combine the types of questions judiciously. Don't be afraid to use open-ended questions where the employee can give you a response that you did not offer in the options for a closed-ended question.

Ways of collecting responses and processing results

Survio offers a wide range of channels to distribute your surveys. Taking the situation of a departing employee into account, you can reach for a direct link that you send to their inbox. If you agree on sending the employee exit survey to their private e-mail, they can conveniently fill it in at home on a computer, tablet or mobile phone.

Another option is to print out the survey for the employee leaving the job and give it to them in person. This is an opportunity to explain to them why you care about their responses and to add or specify details. If you want Survio to process the responses from this printed employee exit questionnaire, you will need to manually rewrite them after the employee returns the completed questionnaire to you.

Survio analyzes the collected responses automatically and in real time. The data is processed into summary results and individual answers. If necessary, the entire output with analyzed responses can be turned into well designed and comprehensible reports in a single click. This overview contains graphs and tables displaying values the way you desire - sorted, filtered, grouped, all of which can be done in Survio, so you don't need any other software. There’s also a variety of commonly available formats to generate the reports into: PDF, DOCX, PPTX, XLSX, CSV or Google Sheets.

For further information on how to share surveys and discover a lot more features and gimmicks, you are welcome to browse through our blog.

Tip: To avoid constant checks when and if the employee has already sent you a completed exit questionnaire, turn the response notification by e-mail function ON in Survio. When the employee’s responses arrive, Survio sends you a notification to your email.

What do the responses tell you and how to evaluate them

The responses have been processed, the presentation is ready and now comes the most important thing – the evaluation of the obtained data and proposing solutions that will lead to the rectification of shortcomings.

Here is an example of a specific issue that the leaving employee pointed out in the exit interview questionnaire and you defined it as follows:

When performing work duties, the employee often lacked information on assigned tasks.

There might be several reasons and they have a common denominator. From the above statement, the following can be deduced:

Further research will indicate that, for example, the portal with internal information, the implementation of which was not actually cheap, is not used by employees because they do not know that it exists or are not familiar with it. The solution is a joint presentation, where you can show and explain everything and describe the reasons why this portal was created and what its goal is.

Did you notice frequent comments on the evaluation of the adaptation process? It may be necessary to modify the system of training for individual positions, instruct managers better, update training materials and set goals that each employee should achieve upon training.

It is necessary to conduct further research or a personal interview and go into more detail. To strengthen trust and a healthy work environment, it certainly helps to engage employees in the company’s affairs, prepare joint events, promote open communication and reinforce the idea that the only problem that cannot be solved is the unspoken one.

A single questionnaire will give you an idea of what you could improve in the company. However, you can only start to change things based on repeated, long-term and systematic questioning with regular evaluation.

A reference from an HR specialist

Let’s sum up to let you set sail on a survey cruise

The employee exit survey is used by small and medium-sized enterprises with units of up to tens of employees, as well as large companies. Companies want to know about the shortcomings that can cause their employee turnover rate. This survey will not tell you how to rectify such shortcomings. It will help you identify the problems. Take advantage of the opinion of leaving employees and save costs associated with the recruitment of new staff. Meet the needs of the people who stay in your company. Create conditions for them not to feel the need to leave and convince them that your company, your work and the people around you are exactly right for them.

And if you don't need to interview an employee on notice at the moment, try to use a job seekers questionnaire and present it to those interested who apply for a position in your company. Get inspiration not only from the questionnaire, but we have also prepared a use case for you on How to create a job seekers survey.

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