Even small companies need to offer outplacement assistance when letting employees go. It might seem like an extra expense that you can ill afford, especially if you’re laying off employees to cut costs. But if you want your company to thrive in the long run, you can’t afford not to offer outplacement assistance.
Why not? Outplacement services help employees move forward into new roles quickly, instead of languishing on unemployment, costing your company money in increased unemployment insurance premiums and other costs. Those who stay behind will feel better about remaining with the company, and you’ll maintain a strong reputation when former employees are moving quickly into new roles instead of spending that time rattling around the house, posting negative feedback about your company online.
Outplacement Save You Money
The upfront cost of outplacement services can be high, but it’s one of those things that pays for itself in the long run. Without outplacement services, employees are left to their own devices after a layoff — and not all employees may be equally skilled in terms of navigating the job market. An employee who has been with the company for a long time probably has rusty interview skills, needs help updating their resume, and may even require some additional skills training to keep up with younger candidates in the workforce.
Outplacement assistance can give employees the help they need to succeed in finding a new job quickly. Laid-off employees can practice their interview skills, line up skills training, investigate opportunities to go back to school, and gain access to job opportunities that might not be available to the general job-hunting public. All of this will ensure that they move into new roles faster, and that will save your company on the costs of paying out unemployment to a laid-off employee, cause it’ll mean former employees draw fewer unemployment checks.
You’ll also prevent lawsuits, because employees who are focused on the future, giving interviews, and transitioning quickly into new roles are employees who aren’t worried about suing. Outplacement assistance allows employees to continue to feel supported as their time with your company comes to an end, and employees who feel supported in this way are less likely to be interested in seeking retribution through the courts.
Remaining Employees Will Be Reassured
Watching people get laid off every day while you try to carry on business as usual can be really hard on your remaining employees. If your firm is smaller, your team is likely to be more tight-knit, which can make the emotional burden of watching your colleagues get laid off that much harder to bear.
Nothing can take away the distress of watching respected and, in many cases, loved friends and colleagues go through the trauma of a job loss. But you can ease that distress by offering your outgoing employees outplacement assistance. Those who stay behind will feel better about the layoffs, knowing that their colleagues are being supported in a meaningful way through the transition. They’ll also feel safer in the knowledge that, if they’re escorted out by security tomorrow, they’ll have that support, too.
You’ll Protect Your Reputation
Your company’s reputation is priceless. It’s what attracts top candidates during hiring periods, and it’s what keeps many of your customers loyal. Damage to your company’s reputation could make it harder to attract quality candidates. It could even shrink your customer base and affect your revenues and profits. After all, plenty of people these days are willing to avoid doing business with companies — even large ones — that have a reputation for treating their employees badly.
You don’t want your former employees getting disgruntled enough to talk badly about your company online. Employees who are able to find new jobs quickly after getting laid off don’t have time to develop those feelings — they’re too focused on moving on. It’s almost always the employees who spend months on unemployment who end up saying the worst things about your company after a layoff. Keep employees happy even after they leave the firm by helping them move on quickly.
If you’re considering layoffs, it can be tempting to keep costs to a minimum by foregoing outplacement assistance. But doing so could actually cost you more in the long run — and could jeopardize your ability to attract top candidates or harm brand loyalty among your target market. Play it safe, and do the right thing — offer your former employees the outplacement support they need.