You’ve heard of the exit interview, but have you heard of the stay interview? If not, I suggest you keep reading. With The Great Resignation, companies are in a hiring frenzy. Companies are panicking, offering whatever they can, from signing bonuses to home buying programs. But throughout all this, some very key players are being neglected: the ‘enthusiastic stayers.’ Businesses are so focused on recruiting that they forget about retaining current employees. This is where the stay interview comes in.
What is the stay interview?
Opposite to common belief, the stay interview isn’t about convincing a departing employee to stay. Truthfully the stay interview is a one-on-one interview with a long-term and well-performing employee. The interview should take up between 30 minutes to an hour. While it’s called the “stay interview,” it should be considered more as a conversation or discussion.
The ultimate goal of a stay interview is to uncover what keeps your employees coming back to work each day. On the other hand, the stay interview will also unveil the not-so-great parts of the job, aka why employees are leaving.
Benefits of a stay interview:
Unlike the exit interview, the stay interview is a proactive and preventative measure. Both interviews can gain similar information, but their timing makes a stay interview more valuable. If you are conducting an exit interview, it’s already too late. While you can gain valuable insights for improvement, you are still losing an employee. With a stay interview, you can identify and address any issues while retaining your employees.
Stay interviews are a great way to build trust between managers and their direct reports. Creating an open line of communication will build confidence for other employees to voice any concerns or issues they have even outside of planned stay interviews.
If your company is opting for stay interviews, there needs to be a commitment to implementing positive change. To reap the benefits of stay interviews, you need to follow through. After gathering feedback from your employees, look for commonalities to determine areas of change. If a prevalent topic was professional development, strategize how you can upskill your team.
Tips for conducting stay interviews
- Schedule the interview in advance. Giving a heads up demonstrates you value your employees’ time.
- Explain the reason for the interview and provide your employee with the questions in advance.
- Choose a comfortable location. The more comfortable your employee feels, the more likely they will open up.
- Not all employees need to be interviewed; instead, focus on your top performers.
- Be aware of the energy that your body language and other non-verbal cues give off. Look approachable and create a safe space for your employees.
- Go in with an open mind. Listen closely and try to uncover the underlying interests of your employees.
- Feel free to make some jot notes but stay engaged.
- Don’t hesitate to conduct stay interviews for fear of not delivering on a suggestion. Manage expectations by letting your employees know this is an exploratory conversation. You can’t grant all requests but work with your employees to find alternatives.
Sample stay interview questions:
Choose questions that aim to understand how your employees feel about their jobs and the workplace.
- Do you feel that your skills are being fully utilized?
- How do you like to be recognized for a job well done? Do you believe you are receiving proper recognition?
- If applicable, how has your perception of the company changed during your time here?
- Do you have any ideas that you haven’t yet gotten an opportunity to share?
- On a scale of 1 to 10, how is your work-life balance? How can it be improved?
- What is your least favourite aspect of work?
- Is there anything you miss about your past jobs?
- In what environments or conditions are you most productive?
- If you could change one thing about your job, what would it be?
- In what ways can we better support you?
About Live Assets | IT Staffing Solutions
Live Assets is a boutique IT Staffing/Recruiting firm specializing exclusively in building IT teams of excellence for the Information Technology sector.
We are a small, but productive team that works closely together and has had a 96% success rate for the past number of years!
We have a diverse number of clients and industries and focus on both full-time and contract I.T. opportunities.