The Leaver Experience

Last impressions matter

It is a universal truth that some people will leave your business.

some people will leave because they have just won the lottery (yay for them!), because they have had an amazing opportunity, they just couldn’t say no to, and some people will leave simply because you got it wrong.

But whatever the reason for leaving it is important that you have designed the leaving experience to be a good one, or as good as it might be in the situation.

A Strong Finish

So, someone is leaving why should you invest in making their experience of leaving your business a great one?

In his studies on experience, memory and decision-making psychologist Daniel Kahneman found that people remember experiences based primarily on 2 key areas:

  1. How the experience felt at the highest and lowest points
  2. How they felt when it ended

Interestingly it has been shown that length of the experience or even how pleasurable the experience is has a diminished impact on how people remember the experience and then in turn how likely they are to go through that experience again or to recommend it to others.

If you can design a great leaver experience for your people and work hard to ensure that when they decide to end their time with you, they are treated well, recognised for their achievements and their place in the team their memories of your business will more likely be a positive one.

Remember, your people are also your brand advocates and potentially they are your customers/consumers and you already know that it is not cool to get bad press or lose revenue!

What sort of leaver are they?

We think about people leaving in two camps.

  1. Enthusiastic leavers
  2. Reluctant leavers

Reluctant leavers are people leaving not because they want to leave, but because potentially their situation has left them with no option.

Relocating, caring responsibilities, cost of commute, working hours are all examples where the individual is making a reluctant choice to go.

Enthusiastic leavers cannot wait to go! Cultural gaps, bullying/harassment, expectation of the role not meeting reality.

Understanding why your people are leaving gives helps you see if the experience you designed is delivering the results you expected.

It is expensive to lose people

Research from Oxford Economics shows that the cost of employees leaving ranges from £20,000 to £39,000 per person!

So for a company of 1500 people with 5% turnover (75 people) this is a cost of £1.5 million at the lowest end of this range!

Measuring the experience – Understanding why?

Capturing feedback from all leavers on their experience allows you to understand exactly if this is working for you or not, have you designed the process for you or for the human being that is leaving?

But also, this is your opportunity to understand the reasons for leaving, what was the trigger for making the decision to leave? Was it a positive decision (They have an amazing opportunity to work abroad) or a negative decision (They loved their job but felt that they could not do this to the best of their abilities)?

The People Experience Hub leaver module allows to you ask the important questions and view the data based on any of your demographics, this will help you see where you may have issues and recognise if they are company wide or something more localised.

Combined with our Candidate Experience and Joiner Experience modules you can get a a real view on the start and the end of the employee journey

About the Author

My name is Nick Court and I work at The People Experience Hub

Find out more about the solutions we offer at

Drop the team an email

Or hit me up on twitter @Scruffy_Nick or on LinkedIn here

We would love to hear what you think.

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