by Yevheniia Matrosova, Head of Recruitment and HR in Reenbit
Yevheniia has over nine years of HR and recruitment experience, including over four years as a Head/Lead. She earned her degree from the Business School of Leadership and Management and has also served as a tutor for multiple recruitment schools. Yevheniia has successfully managed teams of 15 or more members and has independently staffed over 200 highly skilled IT specialists. Her expertise extends to designing HR/R processes from the ground up for various organizations.
Terminating an employee is one of the most challenging tasks a manager or HR professional will face. It’s essential to handle the process with care, compassion, and professionalism to minimize disruptions to the organization and the terminated employee. In this article, I’ll provide a comprehensive guide on how to terminate employees properly in a way that’s ethical, efficient, and effective.
1. Assess the situation
Before initiating the termination process, it is crucial to assess the situation thoroughly. Consider the following factors:
By taking the time to assess the situation, you can determine the appropriate approach and ensure that the termination is justified.
2. Prepare for the termination
Once you have assessed the situation and determined that termination is necessary, it is essential to prepare for it. Consider the following steps:
By preparing for the termination, you can ensure that the process is as smooth and respectful as possible. It is important to show gratitude for the employee’s time spent in your company.
3. Conduct the termination meeting
When conducting the termination meeting, it is crucial to handle the meeting with professionalism, respect, and empathy. Consider the following:
By conducting the termination meeting with care and empathy, you can minimize the emotional impact of the termination on the employee.
4. Follow up with remaining employees
After the termination, it’s essential to follow up with the remaining employees to ensure they’re aware of any organizational changes and address any concerns they may have. Here’s what you should do next:
By following up with the remaining employees, you can maintain a positive work environment and minimize any disruption caused by the termination.
5. Secure company assets and data
Securing company assets and data after termination is essential to protect sensitive information and intellectual property. Consider the following steps:
By securing company assets and data, you can prevent any damage to the organization and its reputation.
6. Learn from the experience
After terminating an employee, it’s crucial to learn from the experience. Consider the following steps:
By learning from the experience of terminating an employee, you can improve your organization’s processes and procedures, promote fairness and equity in the workplace, and prevent future terminations.
Do’s and don’ts during termination
Real-life cases and lessons learned
Is truth always the right way?
At my previous job, we had an employee who lacked initiative and was unreliable with completing tasks on time. Additionally, we received numerous negative reviews regarding his communication skills, and unfortunately, he did not take criticism well. Despite our attempts to address these issues and offer support, including coaching on how to manage his challenges, offering simpler tasks, providing additional vacation days, and having the project manager work with him, there was no improvement. Eventually, we made the difficult decision to terminate his employment. However, our main challenge was communicating the reasons for his dismissal as he did not seem to understand what we were trying to say. To protect team morale and our HR brand, we framed it as a staff reduction due to low workload on the customer side. While complete transparency is ideal, it’s important to balance that with minimizing risks to company culture and brand during difficult decisions.
Managing staff reductions with empathy
I once faced the challenging situation of having to let someone go due to staff reduction. In such cases, it is crucial to provide a clear explanation of why this individual was selected for termination. While the reasons may be tied to factors such as salary or experience on the project in comparison to other team members, it is important to avoid disclosing this information during exit interviews without adequate context. It may come across as unfair to the affected employee. Instead, it’s best to emphasize their contributions to the project and reassure them that the decision was not based on their skills or performance. Instead, it’s best to emphasize their contributions to the project and reassure them that the decision was not based on their skills or performance.
If salary is a concern, offer to assist in finding new employment opportunities, both within and outside the company. It’s important to maintain a positive relationship with these individuals, even after their departure. Keep in touch with them and offer any new opportunities that arise in the future.
Firing an employee is a difficult and often unpleasant task, but it can be made more manageable by adhering to a few key steps. By assessing the situation, adequately preparing for the termination, conducting the meeting with empathy and sensitivity, following up with remaining staff, protecting company assets and information, and using the experience as an opportunity to learn, you can ensure that the process is both ethical and efficient. This approach can reduce disruption to both the organization and the dismissed employee, ultimately promoting a positive work environment. Remember that termination is not the end of the process but rather the beginning of a new chapter for the organization and the terminated employee.
by Yevheniia Matrosova, Head of Recruitment and HR in Reenbit Yevheniia has over nine years of HR and recruitment experience, including over four years as a Head/Lead. She earned her degree from the Business School of Leadership and Management and has also served as a tutor for multiple recruitment schools. Yevheniia has successfully managed teams […]https://itcluster.lviv.ua/wp-content/uploads/2023/07/na-sajt.png