Since I started at Chiumento I’ve had to explain to friends and relatives what the benefits of outplacement are. Many have never heard of it, either they’ve been lucky enough to have never been made redundant, or unlucky that their previous employer didn’t see the benefit in offering outplacement to their departing staff.
Many of them have seemed surprised and wondered why organisations pay for outplacement support.
The answer isn’t a simple one. The driving factor varies from organisation to organisation, but there are many benefits of outplacement to those organisations that invest in it.
Benefits of outplacement
Living the values
Lots of organisations will talk about people being their most important asset. Have values about treating people fairly and with respect. Outplacement is a very visible sign that the company lives up to its values, even during difficult times. Being made redundant is perhaps the most difficult of times. It is never a pleasant experience, and many people’s first reaction is “oh no, what next, how am I going to pay the mortgage?”. Although outplacement won’t pay anyone’s mortgage for them it can help with the “what next?”. In a time of turmoil, it can help focus attention on the task at hand. Guide them through the next steps to finding a new job, retiring or even setting up on their own.
Protecting brand and reputation
There is no statutory obligation to provide outplacement. However, those companies that do are sending a positive message about how they treat their people, even when they are letting staff go.
In order to receive redundancy payments most people need to work until the end of the process, this could be three months or even six. That is a lot of time for office chatter to be about people’s struggles to find a new role or concerns about the future. This will all have a detrimental effect, not only on the work being produced by those going, but also by the staff that are remaining. By taking away the worry and helping people find a job or assess their financial options, it will reduce the negative chatter and help to maintain the equilibrium.
Those employees that are lucky enough to stay shouldn’t be forgotten. Seeing their friends and colleagues upset and often competing against them for a limited number of roles will have an effect. Seeing their colleagues being treated fairly and given the help they need, reinstates the respect and trust they had in you, as an employer.
It’s the right thing to do
Although a tad fluffy, because it’s nice and the right thing to do is often justification enough. Companies spend millions on their brand, on marketing it and building its reputation. This can be ruined with a few simple tweets, or posts on Facebook, (United Airlines for example). Being seen to be doing the right thing goes along way.
‘The benefits of outplacement’ was written by Verity Morrish, Marketing Manager. If you like what you’ve read why not follow us on LinkedIn or Twitter and read our future musings on the world of work.