Exit Interviews

It is never easy when talent leaves an organization voluntarily or even involuntarily. It takes time, money and lots of effort to replace the departed employee. Reallocating the departed employee’s tasks to other workers is also a hard task.  Understanding why an employee leaves is an essential part of effective leadership. As turnover increases, the morale of the employees decreases within the organization. If a company can find out the reasons why employees are leaving, that provides valuable information that can be used to change the strategic design of employee relations within the company. 

One instrumental way to collect this information is to conduct an exit interview with departing employees.  While it might be too late to retain departing employees who were an asset to the company, the departing employee might share overlooked perspectives that can help the company retain other employees who are on the brink of leaving. Leadership needs to cast aside avoidance of employee candor. Host exit interviews with departing employees with the goal that acquiring potentially brutal commentary can help reduce the likelihood of hearing more of that candor in the future.


What is an exit interview?

An exit interview is a conversation between the departing employee and key leadership. Key leadership often includes Human Resources personnel or another designated neutral leader.  If the departing employee’s manager participates in the exit interview, it could lead to the employee withholding key details about why they are leaving in fear of confrontation. The purpose of an exit interview is to understand why an employee is voluntarily leaving in order to reduce future turnover.

An ideal time frame for this interview is within the last two weeks of the departing employee’s last day of employment or around the midpoint between the employee’s departure announcement and their official last day.  Ideally, having the exit interview as a face-to-face conversation is preferred. However, as more employees are remote and/or housed in different locations that might be geographically challenging to meet, online meeting tools can be used. The important item is to conduct an exit interview before the employee leaves.  

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How to conduct an exit interview:

Be consistent.  All voluntarily departing employees, hourly and salary, long-term and short-term, should have an exit interview, including seasonal employees. Confidentiality is crucial to getting applicable information that can be used to make positive change within an organization. However, confidentiality cannot be guaranteed in certain situations such as turnover in a small company. Or if the departing employee indicates that criminal action (ex. harassment, theft, etc.) has been observed.  When exit interviews allude to potential criminal activity within an organization, it is essential to get the company’s legal team involved for guidance. ExactHire does not provide legal counsel so check with your company’s legal team regarding specific items to include within exit interviews.


Consider having a list of standard questions that are asked to each departing employee. Other questions can be included that are pertinent to the role, department and employee.  Take notes, but maintain focus on the departing employee’s thoughts. Exit interviewers must be skilled in active listening. Active listening is the concept of being fully engaged with the other person in a conversation.  The goal is not listening to respond; it is listening to understand.  Time is of the essence so the exit interviewer should ask the most crucial questions in which feedback is desired.

Exit Interview Questions

To collect information on certain items like policies, training, etc., consider supplementing the exit interview with a link to a survey where the departing employee can include additional feedback and ratings. Create a questionnaire for distribution as needed, and store data in your company’s onboarding platform. In the personal exit interview, here are ten questions that can be asked to the departing employee to prompt the departing employee to share relevant information: 


  1. What made you start looking for a new opportunity? 
  2. What solidified your decision to accept your new role?
  3. What could have influenced your decision to stay with our company?
  4. Would you recommend others to work for our company? Why? Why not?
  5. What recommendations do you have for our company to improve?
  6. What are your thoughts about the direction of your department? Company?
  7. How could your manager have supported you better? Supported the department better?
  8. What are your least favorite parts about working here?  Most favorite parts?
  9. Did you previously share any of your concerns and challenges discussed today with management and/or HR? If yes, what was their response?  
  10. What concerns or comments would you like to share?  


In the exit interview, be gracious and listen to what the departing employee says, even if it is not what is desired to hear. Empathy is a must. The employee is leaving voluntarily because their needs were not met. An exit interview gives the employee a chance to share their thoughts on why the decision to leave was made. Candidly, it can give the departing employee peace of mind that they shared a piece of their mind.  The employee will be feeling a gamut of emotions: sadness or happiness they are leaving, frustration or excitement about the pending change, along with fear and uncertainty of what is next with the current and future company. 

The exit interviewer(s) need to understand why, and be cognizant that in the departing employee’s eyes, the company did not fully meet their needs and not take offense at that. Do not burn the bridge in how you respond to the departing employee.  That departing employee could become a boomerang employee and rejoin the company’s workforce again in the future. 


Ultimately the purpose of an exit interview is for the company to acquire information about how to improve and to strengthen the relationship between the departing employee and the company. Showing genuine concern for the comments shared and appreciation for the time spent at the organization will hopefully leave the departing employee with a strengthened positive perception of the company.  Word-of-mouth can help or hinder recruitment for an organization.  No company wants to be perceived as a stressful and horrible place to work. Take the knowledge obtained from exit interviews to ensure that past, present and future employees observe a company committed to the success of their most valuable asset – people.

5 Ways to Create a Positive Work Environment

Creating a positive work environment is critical to a company’s success. And a huge part of that is hiring the correct people to fill open positions. However, if managing an effective hiring process is taking too much of your time, consider ExactHire Full Service Hiring –where our team takes on the difficult, time-consuming tasks of hiring and delivers you qualified candidates to choose from.

In today’s fast-paced and competitive business world, fostering a positive work environment is not just a feel-good idea; it’s a strategic imperative. A positive workplace culture can significantly impact employee engagement, productivity, retention, and overall organizational success. In this blog, we’ll explore five proven strategies to create and nurture a positive work environment that benefits both employees and the company.

Open and Honest Communication

Effective communication is the bedrock of a positive work environment. When employees and management communicate openly and honestly, it builds trust, clarity, and a sense of belonging. Here are some key elements of fostering communication:

Regular Updates: Keep employees informed about company news, goals, and progress. Regularly share updates through meetings, emails, or a company intranet.

Active Listening: Encourage employees to share their ideas, concerns, and feedback. Actively listen to their input and take it into account when making decisions.

Transparency: Be transparent about company policies, procedures, and decision-making processes. This helps dispel rumors and create a sense of fairness.

Conflict Resolution: Establish effective conflict resolution mechanisms to address disputes promptly and fairly. A conflict-free workplace is a more positive one.

Promote Work-Life Balance

In today’s hyper-connected world, it’s easy for employees to feel overwhelmed by the demands of work. Promoting a healthy work-life balance can alleviate stress and burnout, leading to a happier and more productive workforce. Here’s how to promote work-life balance:

Flexible Scheduling: Whenever possible, offer flexible work hours or remote work options. This allows employees to better manage their personal and professional lives.

Encourage Time Off: Encourage employees to use their vacation days and personal time. Avoid glorifying overwork or sending emails during off-hours.

Set Realistic Expectations: Ensure that workloads and deadlines are manageable. Unrealistic expectations can lead to stress and dissatisfaction.

Wellness Programs: Consider offering wellness programs that focus on physical and mental health. Yoga classes, stress management workshops, or access to counseling services can make a significant difference.

Recognize and Appreciate

Employee recognition is a powerful tool for creating a positive work environment. When employees feel valued and appreciated, they are more motivated, engaged, and committed to their work. Here’s how to effectively recognize and appreciate your team:

Thank-You Notes: A simple “thank you” note or email can go a long way in expressing appreciation for an employee’s efforts.

Employee of the Month: Consider implementing an Employee of the Month program to celebrate outstanding contributions.

Public Acknowledgment: Recognize employees’ achievements in team meetings or company-wide gatherings. Highlight their successes and contributions.

Customized Rewards: Tailor rewards and recognition to individual preferences. Some employees may prefer public recognition, while others may prefer a private thank you.


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Invest in Professional Development

Employees who see opportunities for growth and advancement within their current organization are more likely to be engaged and committed. Investing in professional development not only benefits employees but also strengthens the company’s workforce. Here’s how to promote growth:

Training Programs: Offer training programs and workshops to enhance employees’ skills and knowledge. This can include technical skills, leadership development, or industry-specific training.

Mentorship and Coaching: Establish mentorship programs that pair experienced employees with those looking to grow in their careers. Coaching and mentorship can be invaluable for personal and professional development.

Clear Career Paths: Provide employees with a clear understanding of potential career paths within the organization. Encourage goal setting and provide support for advancement.

Continuous Learning: Promote a culture of continuous learning where employees are encouraged to seek out new knowledge and skills.

Foster a Positive Work Culture

The workplace culture sets the tone for interactions and behaviors within an organization. Fostering a positive work culture can significantly impact employee morale and satisfaction. Here’s how to promote a positive work culture:

Respect and Inclusivity: Ensure that all employees are treated with respect and dignity. Promote inclusivity and diversity within the workplace.

Collaboration: Encourage teamwork and collaboration. Create an environment where employees feel comfortable sharing ideas and working together toward common goals.

Zero Tolerance for Toxic Behavior: Address toxic behaviors such as gossip, bullying, or discrimination promptly and firmly. Make it clear that such behaviors will not be tolerated.

Company Values: Align company values with actions and decisions. When employees see that the organization lives its values, it fosters trust and confidence.


creating a positive work environment is not a one-time effort but an ongoing commitment. By implementing these five strategies—open and honest communication, promoting work-life balance, recognizing and appreciating employees, investing in professional development, and fostering a positive work culture—you can cultivate a workplace where employees thrive, and the organization flourishes. Remember that a positive work environment is a collective effort that involves every member of the organization, from leadership to entry-level employees, working together to create a harmonious and productive workplace.

Stay Interviews

To continue our Indiana HR Conference series we will be talking about another important topic. Stay interviews were a topic of conversation that we felt were an important takeaway. Losing key talent rarely is good. According to Gallup, companies in the United States spend $11 billion dollars annually on turnover. The time and effort Human Resources must go through to start the replacement process is expensive, even if the position is filled internally by an existing employee who is already acclimated to the company. Especially concerning…did the departed employee go to work for the organization’s competitor!?!?  If so, that can be damaging to the company’s income, particularly if the former employee shares company strategies and insight. It is crucial for a company to mitigate turnover before it happens, and one way to do that is by administering “Stay Interviews”.

What are Stay Interviews?

“Stay Interviews”. What’s that you say? A Stay Interview is a proactive method to prevent the loss of talent before it happens. It is a conversation between a company leader (typically a manager) and an employee (typically a direct report) to learn what the employee needs from the company so the employee can be engaged and retained by the company.  It is the opposite of an “Exit Interview”. Exit interviews are somewhat reactive. When Human Resources and/or an employee’s manager conducts an exit interview, it is too late. The employee has submitted their notice to resign, and rarely is there an opportunity to change the employee’s decision to leave.

Exit interviews are useful in collecting reasons why an employee chooses to leave the organization. However, it is often too late for the company to resolve those particular issues affecting that employee which instigated the employee’s choice to work elsewhere.  Exit interview information can be useful if the information collected can be used to make positive change. It can also be used within the organization to prevent future talent from leaving. If there are overarching themes communicated in exit interviews such as pay concerns, work-life balance, or the need for flexibility, it delivers a message to the employer that there is a need to evaluate current working conditions. The company can use the data to review internal design, benefits, working conditions and any other relevant areas. Exit interviews are a crucial way to identify challenges in the workplace. They should be incorporated in a company’s offboarding process.

Why are Stay Interviews Important?

An organization’s goal is to minimize turnover and retain talent. However, talent cannot be retained as effectively if leadership does not know why employees choose to stay. This is why Stay Interviews are valuable. The ultimate goals of Stay Interviews are to prevent turnover and create a supportive work environment that meets employees’ needs. Stay Interviews are typically conducted by an employee’s direct manager. Depending on the work culture and size of the organization, Human Resources can participate also.

When an employee’s direct manager conducts a Stay Interview with an employee, the manager can receive candid feedback that can help strengthen the team and department. It could also damage the relationship if the manager is not skilled in accepting constructive criticism or candid feedback from an employee. If an employee has a contentious relationship with their manager, that employee might not share any instrumental feedback due to fear of repercussions. Keeping these scenarios in mind, it is important that employees have the ability to complete their Stay Interviews with company support. If they do not feel comfortable conducting their Stay Interview with their direct manager, then it is important that HR participate also. 

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Formatting Interviews

Interviews can be crafted in a format that fits best for the company culture. All departments and employee levels should complete a Stay Interview to collect a broad scope of insight. Having a discussion with the manager and/or HR can allow the employee to express their thoughts in more detail. Make it comfortable for the employee. Send a calendar invitation at least a week before the stay interview.  If a standard list of questions are utilized, consider giving the list to the employee prior to meeting so the employee can give genuine thought to formulating their answers.

It is not always easy for an employee to answer on-the-spot, thought-provoking questions relating to one’s employment. There are survey options that can be created and submitted with or without employee names. If surveys are utilized, feedback must be carefully evaluated by management and HR. After that evaluation, sharing the feedback and plan for the suggestions, positives and negatives need to be communicated to the employees for transparency.  While surveys are one option, it does not provide the same candor and facilitate the personal connection as in-person Stay Interviews do. Surveys can be a useful tool to collect supplemental data post-Stay Interview.       

Questions to Consider

Questions can vary somewhat in the context of the company and employee’s role and need to be applicable to onsite and remote employees. Avoid “yes” and “no” questions; the goal of a Stay Interview is discussion. One word answers rarely facilitate in-depth discussion. Here are a few standard questions that should be asked in a Stay Interview:

  1. Each morning, what do you look forward to about working that day? 
  2. What have you learned here? What are you currently learning now? What do you want to learn?
  3. Why do you stay with our company?
  4. When was the last time you thought about leaving our company? Why?
  5. How can I better support you in your role?

Customize the list further, but do not overload the employee with questions. Do more listening, not hearing but actual listening, more than talking. Take notes and follow up on any items in question. The Society of Human Resources Management (SHRM) offers a list of questions that an employer can use when conducting Stay Interviews. Keep in mind, for employees who have worked at the company less than six months to a year, collecting their insight should be a part of employee onboarding and not administered as a formal “Stay Interview” as employees need to have time to become acclimated within the work culture and learn the intricacies of their roles. Show genuine appreciation for the feedback shared.


If your organization is not using Stay Interviews with your employees, consider using this concept. Stay Interviews can boost employee engagement which then increases company productivity.  They can decrease turnover and create positive organizational change by maintaining or implementing policies and benefits that increase employee satisfaction. Supplement your conversations with your employees by using your employee onboarding software to communicate events and positive change resulting from feedback collected in Stay Interviews.

Diversity at Work

This is an era of rapid globalization and evolving workplace dynamics. The significance of diversity and inclusion initiatives in the corporate world cannot be overstated. Companies that embrace diversity and foster an inclusive environment are benefiting greatly. They tend to not only attract top talent but also experience enhanced creativity, innovation, and overall business success. In this blog, we will delve into the transformative power of diversity and inclusion initiatives at work. We will also explore practical strategies for implementation. If you are struggling with finding diverse candidates, you might benefit from an ATS. Applicant tracking systems allow for more specific candidate hiring capabilities which could aid in a more diverse workforce. Look into our ExactHire ATS to see if you could benefit from it today!

Understanding Diversity and Inclusion

Diversity goes beyond merely acknowledging differences in gender, ethnicity, age, and background. It encompasses a wide range of characteristics. Including but not limited to, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, disability, and even cognitive thinking styles. Inclusion, on the other hand, is about creating an environment where every individual feels respected, valued, and empowered. This allows them to contribute their unique perspectives.

Benefits of Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives

  1. Enhanced Creativity and Innovation: A diverse workforce brings together individuals with varied life experiences and viewpoints. This diversity of thought sparks creativity and fosters innovative solutions to complex challenges.
  2. Increased Employee Engagement: When employees feel their voices are heard and their identities are respected, they are more likely to be engaged and committed to their work. This translates to higher productivity and job satisfaction.
  3. Broader Market Perspective: A diverse team is better equipped to understand the needs and preferences of a diverse customer base, leading to more effective product development and customer service.
  4. Reduced Employee Turnover: Inclusive workplaces promote a sense of belonging, which in turn leads to higher employee retention rates. Employees are less likely to leave an organization where they feel valued and supported.
  5. Positive Brand Image: Companies that prioritize diversity and inclusion are seen as forward-thinking and socially responsible, attracting customers who align with their values.

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Implementing Diversity and Inclusion Initiatives

  1. Leadership Commitment: True change starts from the top. Company leaders should publicly express their commitment to diversity and inclusion, demonstrating that these values are integral to the organization’s mission.
  2. Unbiased Recruitment: Establish fair hiring practices that prioritize skillsets and qualifications, minimizing bias in the recruitment process. Consider implementing blind resume screening to focus solely on an applicant’s abilities.
  3. Diverse Interview Panels: Include individuals from diverse backgrounds in the interview process to ensure a variety of perspectives are considered when evaluating candidates.
  4. Inclusive Training Programs: Provide diversity and inclusion training for all employees to raise awareness about unconscious biases, stereotypes, and microaggressions, and to promote a more inclusive workplace culture.
  5. Employee Resource Groups: Establish affinity or employee resource groups to create spaces where individuals with shared identities or experiences can connect, share insights, and provide support.
  6. Flexible Work Policies: Accommodate different needs by offering flexible work arrangements that cater to employees’ personal circumstances, such as childcare responsibilities or health conditions.
  7. Inclusive Language and Communication: Encourage the use of inclusive language in all communications to ensure everyone feels respected and acknowledged.
  8. Feedback Mechanisms: Create avenues for employees to provide feedback on diversity and inclusion initiatives, and actively listen to their suggestions for improvement.
  9. Mentorship and Sponsorship: Establish mentorship and sponsorship programs. This way they can connect employees from underrepresented backgrounds with experienced leaders who can help them navigate their careers.
  10. Recognition and Celebration: Recognize and celebrate cultural, religious, and awareness events that are important to employees, fostering a sense of belonging and cultural respect.

Measuring the Impact

To gauge the effectiveness of diversity and inclusion initiatives, companies can implement several key performance indicators (KPIs). These may include employee engagement scores, representation data at various organizational levels, attrition rates, and feedback from employee surveys.


Diversity and inclusion initiatives are not mere checkboxes on a company’s to-do list. They are transformative forces that enrich the workplace and drive innovation. An environment where every individual is empowered to bring their authentic selves to work is very beneficial. Organizations then pave the way for a brighter future filled with collaboration, understanding, and success. Embracing diversity and fostering inclusion is the right thing to do. It’s also a strategic imperative that benefits employees, customers, and the bottom line.

Quiet Thriving

ExaxtHire is a company that is built around addressing, and fixing HR related issues. From talent sourcing, applicant tracking, onboarding, and much more ExactHire can help. Quiet thriving is a topic recently being discussed in the HR field, along with quiet hiring and quiet quitting. Learn more about it here and how to foster quiet thriving.

What is Quiet Thriving?

There is a “quiet” theme that is becoming rather loud in the professional environment. Quiet quitting, quiet hiring, and now there is an additional “quiet” to explore: quiet thriving. Quiet thriving is a concept coined by psychologist Lesley Alderman. When an employee is quietly thriving, they are finding ways to make changes to their workday to make the day more positive for them and proactively finding ways to re-engage within the work environment. Subtle changes occur without making loud fanfare to promote their actions. These employees tend to perform at or above expectations. Often, low-key and low-maintenance are terms to describe these individuals who simply want to do their job, do it well and often leave the job behind for the day when the workday is over.


In their 2022 State of the Global Workforce report, Gallup reported that 33% of workers felt engaged at work so on the converse, a whopping majority of ~66+% feel disconnected and unmotivated in their daily roles. When the majority of workers feel a disconnect, something is lacking. That number speaks volumes and should motivate organizations to conduct an internal audit of their employees’ engagement and identify ways to better support their employees if the results show employee engagement is below expectations.  Extroverted employees are more likely to share their perspectives so do not overlook introverted employees. Introverted employees have relevant, important ideas that can be overshadowed by more vocal employees. After collecting input from employees, use those results to make positive change.

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How to Promote Quiet Thriving

Human Resources and management can reduce employees’ chances of quiet quitting and encourage quiet thriving by having consistent conversations to check-in to listen, not hear, but truly listen to what employees have to say. Observe nonverbal communication too. Often, a strong message can be conveyed in actions, not just words. In these check-in conversations, management and/or Human Resources need to ask candid questions to help with engagement and ultimately retention. Find out what parts of their job they like best and least. Are there tasks that they would like to try? Is the employee interested in leadership opportunities? Some people seek higher level roles while others do not want that additional responsibilities and can still be productive contributors. 


While extroverts and introverts can both appreciate the benefits of quiet thriving, this concept tends to appeal more to introverts who value opportunities to shine outside of being in the spotlight. Often extroverts are thrust in the limelight, frequently by choice, when they want to share ideas or for acknowledgement of tasks well-done. Vast amounts of public attention can be emotionally draining for introverts. Quiet thriving is not about muting or excluding extroverts. It is centered upon having an environment that meets the needs of both extroverts and introverts.

Supporting Your Employees

Employees who seek to quietly thrive need a work environment that supports their needs. Quiet areas and dedicated rooms can offer the much needed solitude to think, analyze and perform. In those dedicated quiet areas, eliminate noise and distractions. Not everyone thrives in an open environment, and the idea of forced social conversation with colleagues can generate anxiety. This is another opportunity for organizations to explore hybrid and/or remote work opportunities. Some employees can be more productive and mentally happier without onsite social distractions. Providing flexibility to employees to craft their work schedules and locations offers quiet thrivers much needed autonomy which can lead to higher productivity and retention.


Collaboration still exists in an environment of quiet thrivers. Quiet thrivers want meaningful discussion and idea sharing where the attention is focused on finding the solution to a project. It is safely sharing ideas in an environment where no one is ridiculed for asking questions or throwing out an “off-the-wall” idea that might or might not work. Having an environment that is supportive of discussion and debate can promote collaboration between differing personality styles. Teams with all personality types can still coexist, but it is imperative that employees do not overshadow others and prevent teammates from confidently and comfortably sharing ideas. 


Communication styles vary among employees. Some individuals who possess valuable knowledge and ideas simply do not like to verbally interact as much as others. Verbal interaction is necessary, but not for every idea shared. Management can support quiet thrivers by promoting chat tools among teammates. Sending messages between teammates can develop discussion with reduced chances of conversations diverting to unrelated topics. When discussing topics, listen to quiet thrivers without interrupting, and allow time for silence. Not everyone wants or should respond immediately without thought on the topic being discussed. 


Communication between co-workers is also important. To enhance productivity, encourage employees to share times that they have blocked off on their calendars for high priority projects and/or collaboration. Management should avoid meetings and interruptions during that time, and ask for a recap of action items completed during that time. Ensure the check-in comes across as a request so the manager can be a resource, not that the check-in is a way to make sure work is completed. Micromanagement is a leading cause of employee disengagement. Trust your team to do the work assigned to them.


Focus on the emotional needs of quiet thrivers. No matter the personality type, people want to know they have done well on a project. Quiet thrivers appreciate acknowledgement of success. Praise them privately and give them notice when they will be publicly acknowledged in groups. This gives them time to prepare for extra attention that might make them uncomfortable. 


Quiet thriving is a concept meant to build on the strengths of (mostly) introverted employees. In the workforce, quiet thriving can help retain productive employees. Allow employees to be in the shadow of others if they want to be. Supporting employees who seek to quietly thrive will help reduce the risk of them quietly quitting and reduce the need for organizations to quietly hire to offset low producers. Let quiet thrivers shout their message of productivity and engagement using their own quiet voices. They want to be heard!

Summer Employee Engagement Ideas

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Summertime and the livin’ is easy. Gershwin’s song from Porgy and Bess discusses the relaxation and peace that people seek in the summer, but finding tranquility is not always that easy. Productivity takes a hit during summer because of many reasons and employee engagement is paramount. Employee burnout is on the rise because there are a variety of outside events, activities and commitments that pull at the employee’s attention. Childcare can be a challenge. Summertime can be a way for organizations to motivate employees as well. Let’s talk about how summertime can lead to easy livin’!


Companies must first address summertime challenges. Summer can be a childcare challenge for families. Not all employees have family members able or willing to help with childcare in the summer. Registering kids for summer camps before they fill is often a game of chance and dexterity of clicking a keyboard and mouse. (Cue the jeopardy music in the background.) Sometimes, the employee/parent wins that game while other times, the panic of being waitlisted or it being closed takes over. There will be days that childcare arrangements fail due to illness or unforeseen emergencies. Give grace and allow flexibility to those employees with children. 


To mitigate employee burnout, encourage employees to take vacation time. When an employee takes a break from work to focus on recreation, leisure or personal matters, it gives the employee time to focus on personal needs. When personal needs are fulfilled or resolved, distractions reduce.


Employees will spend the majority of summertime at work so here are a few activities to keep your onsite and virtual employees engaged and excited!


  • Host meetings outside

Employees, onsite and virtual, can feel a longing to be outside more during the summertime. Pacify that longing by hosting meetings outside for onsite and virtual employees. Summer vacation schedules give management a chance to evaluate the necessity of meetings because it gets challenging to coordinate a time for all essential employees to attend the same meeting. This is a perfect opportunity to evaluate meeting efficiency and timeliness. If meetings can be streamlined to be more efficient with the use of agendas and pre-established, consistent times, the need for multiple meetings and the time length of meetings could potentially be reduced, opening more time for employees to enhance their productivity.  


  • Start a summer book club

Reading is fun-damental! To learn more professionally and personally, reading contributes. During summertime, people often take more time to read in the evenings or on vacation. Allow employees to select books of interest for discussion. For employees with reading challenges such as dyslexia, encourage them to join the discussion by listening to audiobooks. Ideas and collaboration through discussion can yield strategic growth within the company.


  • Volunteer together!

Look closely in the community to find a social cause that needs support. Hospitals, adult and child care facilities, youth activities, and nonprofits are starting points for exploration. Sometimes, finding a volunteer opportunity can be within our own internal networks. Are there families that need some extra support? Any elderly or physically impaired individuals who need their grass mown? Document volunteer hours not because it is a competition, but so employees can take pride in how their time helps others. Check out VolunteerMatch for ideas. Many hands make light work! Having opportunities to volunteer with co-workers and get out into the community can greatly help with employee engagement in the summer months.

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  • Food truck fun!

Bring a variety of food trucks onsite for lunch options. There are a variety of diverse food options so host trucks that reflect unique cultural styles for employees to get a flavor for new cultural experiences.  For virtual employees, include them by providing a gift card to lunch. Use video conferencing to make the meal more social.


  • Get your sports on!

Get your on-the-clock team together off-the-clock by joining a sports league. There are summer league options for softball, volleyball, pickleball, or even gaming. Find sports of interest, and encourage employees to participate even if they feel their skills are sub-pro level. For those employees who do not want to play, encourage them to sit in the stands to cheer. Getting exercise does not have to occur off-the-clock. During the work day, set a time for employees to “take a hike”! Encourage onsite and virtual employees to walk outside for 15-30 minutes if conditions allow. For employees who have physical impairments that prevent walking, encourage them to get outside to get some vitamin D. Stepping away from work for a few minutes can recharge emotional batteries. 


  • Get your spectating on!

Not all employees want to break a sweat in front of their teammates but are willing to watch athletes compete. Many sports organizations will offer ticket discounts to companies. Look into options to watch local minor or major league baseball games, collegiate events, races or theatrical performances. Not only is a company supporting local teams by filling the stands, but it also promotes a sense of community among teammates when supporting others. Virtual employees can possibly watch the same event via streaming, local TV or cable services.


  • Test your brain!

Host a trivia contest with your onsite and remote employees. Hold the event during lunch where the company can cater or do a pitch in. For remote employees, consider sending a gift card to cover lunch. Make this a weekly or monthly tradition. If company policy and local laws allow, offer prizes, such as company swag, to the winner(s) or winning team(s). Have an attendance prize to include everyone and generate excitement. 


  • Listen to the sound of music!

While many people love listening to the music of famous artists at concert venues, the price of some famous concerts might be outside of the company’s or employees’ budgets. That does not mean that concerts are out of consideration.  There are many local venues that offer free or low cost outdoor concerts during evening or early afternoon hours. Take the team to listen. If permitted by the venue, live stream the event so virtual employees can experience the event.  


  • Stop and smell the roses

Get employees together to work in a community garden. Many areas offer community gardens where the food grown can be donated to local shelters. It is a way to learn more about growing plants while growing in spirit and keeping employees engaged during the summertime. 


  • Picnic time!

Host a picnic for the team. Cater the event or just the main course and make it an old fashioned pitch in. If there is not a courtyard or outside area on the company property, find a nearby park and have it there. Logistics can be cumbersome in urban settings so if an outdoor event is not conducive, transform the company’s dining area into a picnic theme. Finding picnic themed decor can be cost-friendly by visiting local dollar stores or ordering online at thematic sites. Online coupons reduce the cost. Keep the decor and make it a recurring event during summer.


No matter the activity, keep it light and fun! Requiring employees to participate dampens employee morale. For those who do not want to participate, do not penalize them. Some stellar employees simply want to do their job and go home. Solicit engagement ideas from employees and always include virtual employees when collecting ideas and feedback. Not all companies have a large amount of funds in their budget; money is not what generates employee engagement. When a company demonstrates authentic, genuine interest in the well-being of employees, that drives engagement and motivation. Finding ways to say a bonafide thank you for your effort will go a long way to strengthen the company team. 

Remote Work: Why Employers Should Consider it


Remote work can add a unique challenge to the onboarding process of new hires, check out ExactHire’s OnboardCentric software to make employee onboarding a breeze!

In recent years, the concept of remote work has gained significant traction, revolutionizing traditional work dynamics. The COVID-19 pandemic further accelerated this shift, pushing companies to adopt remote work policies. However, even as we emerge from the pandemic, there are compelling reasons for businesses to continue embracing remote work as a long-term strategy. This blog will explore the numerous advantages that remote work offers. These include increased productivity, cost savings, improved work-life balance, access to global talent, and reduced environmental impact.

Remote Work Enhances Productivity and Focus

Remote work has proven to enhance employee productivity. By eliminating long commutes and minimizing distractions often found in traditional office settings, workers enjoy increased focus and the ability to structure their work environments to suit their preferences. Studies show that employees working remotely are more likely to put in longer hours, take fewer breaks, and achieve higher levels of output. Additionally, it allows individuals to choose their most productive hours, fostering a sense of autonomy and ownership over their work.

Cost Savings and Efficiency

Companies that transition to remote work models can benefit from substantial cost savings. By eliminating the need for physical office spaces, businesses can reduce expenses related to rent, utilities, and maintenance. Moreover, it allows companies to tap into a global talent pool, eliminating geographical barriers and potentially finding highly skilled individuals at lower costs. Reduced travel expenses and office supply expenditures further contribute to these savings. Companies can reinvest these funds into employee development programs, technology upgrades, or other areas that drive growth and innovation.

Improved Work-Life Balance and Employee Well-being

One of the most significant advantages of remote work is the improved balance it offers employees. By eliminating the daily commute, workers have more time to spend with their families, pursue hobbies, or engage in self-care activities. It also provides flexibility for employees to better manage personal commitments, such as attending appointments or taking care of children or elderly family members. This increased flexibility can significantly reduce stress and contribute to improved mental health and overall well-being.


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Remote Work Increases Access to Global Talent

Remote work eliminates geographical limitations when it comes to talent acquisition. Companies can tap into a global talent pool and access individuals with diverse skill sets and perspectives. By embracing this strategy, businesses can build teams comprising the best talent, regardless of their location. This diversity of thought fosters innovation, creativity, and problem-solving. Additionally, it allows companies to offer job opportunities to individuals who may face barriers in traditional office settings, such as those with disabilities or caregivers who require flexible schedules.

Remote Work Reduces Environmental Impact

Remote work contributes to a greener future by reducing carbon emissions associated with commuting and the operation of physical office spaces. With fewer employees commuting daily, there is a significant reduction in traffic congestion and air pollution. Additionally, it reduces the need for office supplies and the energy consumption required to power and maintain office buildings. By adopting these policies, companies can actively contribute to environmental sustainability and align with the increasing focus on corporate social responsibility.


Remote work offers numerous benefits for both companies and employees. Embracing this flexible work model allows businesses to increase productivity, save costs, improve work-life balance, access a global talent pool, and reduce their environmental impact. By recognizing and embracing these advantages, companies can position themselves for success in a rapidly evolving work landscape.

How will ChatGPT affect the hiring process?

Chat Generative Pretrained Transformer (AKA ChatGPT) is making headlines consistently throughout the world. ChatGPT is an Artificial Intelligence (AI) driven, human-like chat concept created by OpenAI and released to the world in November 2022. OpenAI has a strong, powerful and well-known investor – Microsoft.  In fact, the partnership with OpenAI and Microsoft is so strong, Microsoft is slated to incorporate AI called “Copilot” into Microsoft 365. Technology is constantly evolving, and the world is getting mainstream access to software that is reflective of human-like responses. AI driven software is new and exciting yet intimidating and overwhelming. ChatGPT is promoted as a resource for industries across the board, and Human Resources are starting to field questions, benefits and concerns as it is integrated in the hiring process. Want to streamline your hiring process? Use ExactHire’s Full Service Hiring service and forget about hiring struggles and just get the best available candidates for your open positions delivered to you!


Benefits to using ChatGPT in recruiting

Crafting a job listing or creating a standard job template can take time. ChatGPT can help by providing a foundation of content describing the role that can be customized to reflect the requirements of a vacant job listing. ChatGPT can generate content that does not include unconscious bias towards protected classes. It can keep content neutral, remove potential gender biases and eliminate jargon.

ChatGPT can provide job specific content for an organization. It can provide Human Resources professionals with sample interview questions to use in phone screens and face-to-face/virtual interviews. It can focus on the roles being filled at the moment. This is helpful as a starting point for recruiters.  These recruiters might be interviewing candidates for different types of roles that might be outside their niche. Before becoming dependent on the interview questions generated by ChatGPT, it is important to check with the company’s legal team. They can ensure that all application  and interview questions meet local, state and federal legal guidelines. HR professionals need to customize questions to reflect the culture, mission and vision of the organization as a whole.

Using ChatGPT in the workplace

Trying to come up with a way to draft an email that is not too wordy but yet “personable”? ChatGPT can be tasked with composing email content related to the mission of the message. Spelling and grammar errors are reduced. Save the content as a Communication Template to use when texting and/or emailing others.

Once new talent has been hired, it is crucial for a company to keep them engaged. ChatGPT can help new hires by answering their questions about company policies. ChatGPT can also provide assistance to new hires as they complete required paperwork and enroll in benefits. This can save HR time by automating tasks such as scheduling orientation, supervisor meetings and ordering company swag for new hires.

Microsoft’s AI, Copilot, will be integrated into Word, Excel, PowerPoint and Outlook.  Abilities of the AI integration will allow for the automatic creation of data graphs in Excel. It also has the ability for PowerPoint to create presentations with images based on user prompts. For people who miss a Teams meeting, Copilot is set to generate automatic summarization. It will document the key content points from conversations within Teams. The inclusion date of this feature has not yet been released. This is promoted to offer cost and time savings to end users. Considering the volume of companies that use Microsoft, this will impact internal and external stakeholders.


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Concerns about using ChatGPT in the hiring process

While AI has been trickling into mainstream software and internet use, the immersion of ChatGPT fosters some genuine concern. Such as how intuitive the tool can be and whether it can cross a line of no return in its answers. There is no guarantee that answers provided to the users’ questions will be accurate or even ethically appropriate. Individuals who are starting conversations with an employer via chat dialogues need to be aware of who is or is not on the other side of the chat. Be forthcoming to employees that AI is driving the results and direction of the chat conversation to mitigate negative perception of the “employee” communicating in the chat.

Some companies will seek the use of ChatGPT as a replacement for human capital in a way to save time and money. If ChatGPT can do the tasks of one or more individuals, it is likely there will be some cost-cutting measures by eliminating human roles. Goldman Sachs estimates that 300 million jobs could be lost or diminished due to AI. To mitigate risk of elimination, at-risk employees need to explore opportunities for ongoing education and cross-training in in-demand areas.

Questions exist over safety controls. As with any software program, engineers work diligently to establish the highest parameters of safety. Will answers be accurate and appropriate? If ChatGPT generates inappropriate answers in a chat conversation, the impact of that conversation could lead to negative publicity that could impact the recruitment and retention of employees.


As an Applicant Tracking System helps streamline the recruitment process and an Onboarding System securely organizes employees’ content, technology is designed to simplify tasks in a process.  With ChatGPT, a lingering question exists. How will ChatGPT affect the neurodevelopment of employees? Will individuals find ChatGPT as a time saving tool that helps individuals light the fire of innovation of new projects, or will ChatGPT foster a sense of dependency and lethargy that stymies creativity and self-awareness? Time will tell as the debate is escalating on the use of AI in the employment sector. As with any new tool, it takes time to develop and refine the skills of its use. Knowledge is power; do not underestimate the powerful partnership of technology and the human brain in the quest for efficiency and productivity.

Workforce Redeployment

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Layoffs have been a recurring theme in the news lately. Major organizations such as Disney, Meta, Microsoft, and Goldman Sachs are some of the most well-known organizations that are cutting staff due to concerns of a pending global recession. Layoffs are designed to cut costs and implement a more lean style of business to yield a higher profit. However it can often communicate internal instability to consumers. They might look at other product and service providers who appear more stable to complete business transactions.

Layoffs not only reduce staff, but they also reduce employee morale. They generate a sense of uncertainty as many employees wonder if they are next on the “chopping block”. If employees are tense wondering if they are going to be laid off, they will start looking at employment elsewhere. Often this is with the company’s competitors in the same niche.  Although layoffs can be unavoidable, other options worth examining exist before making the decision to eliminate jobs. To help mitigate damage to employee morale and maintain a positive perception of company stability, companies need to explore the option of workforce redeployment instead of layoffs.

Internal Mobility

Workforce redeployment, AKA “internal mobility”, is a strategic function conducted by Human Resources and leadership to shift existing employees into different roles within the same organization. This is not a new concept. Companies have been utilizing workforce redeployment for years. Particularly in the case of health issues where an employee might not be able to physically or mentally perform the duties of their current role. They are then moved into a different role within the same organization which is more feasible for success. Workforce redeployment is commonly used at times of internal reorganization to help employees maintain employment within the company. Redeployed employees do not necessarily keep the same pay, schedule and working arrangements. Those factors are based on the needs of the new role in which the employee was redeployed.

Currently, workforce redeployment is gaining more traction as a strategic function to offset unexpected situations that impact business functions. The economy will continue to ebb and flow with periods of expansion and contraction so that is a known variable. Unknown variables such as a global pandemic are difficult to anticipate. Over three years later, companies are still reeling from the effects of COVID-19’s impact on working arrangements and job adaptability. Throw in the ongoing challenge of finding qualified talent, and these three items form the perfect storm for business failure if proactive processes to retain talent are not integrated within the company’s strategic plan.

Maximizing Efficiencies

Human Resources and leadership must conduct regular reviews of an organization’s structure. To help maximize efficiencies within an organization, a company needs to evaluate current roles. Then forecast where growth and reductions are anticipated to occur. In departments where growth and value are lagging, examine the likelihood of their future impact and their timeframe of dissipating value. Before the expiration date of those departments and/or roles within that have lagging value, invest in the talented employees. Offer the ability to reskill, as needed, and move into a different role. During times of prosperity, cross train employees. Provide training on skills that are internally forecasted with a high need.

Proactively identifying where cuts are needed, but allowing time to partner with those affected employees, shows the organization’s commitment to their employees. Redeploying employees can boost employee morale and demonstrate a view of solidarity and strength to internal and external stakeholders. Employees who believe that their organization is committed to their tenure and growth are more likely to stay within the organization reducing the loss of knowledge and talent.

For those employees who are redeployed into a different role within an organization, management must take into account that there will be varying degrees of emotion. Employees will run through a gamut of nervousness, excitement, and fear. Establish regular check-ins and monitor the transition into the new role. The redeployed employee is already familiar with the company’s culture and mission, vision and values so time to productivity should be quicker. Allow the employee to openly share their needs, goals and expectations for success.

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Workforce Redeployment Challenges

Not all employees will be supportive of workforce redeployment initiatives so there will be some attrition. For those employees who willingly leave the company, keep the door open and offer a warm welcome for a potential future return. Boomerang workers are employees who leave an organization and come back later to work for the same company. Harvard Business Review reports that 20% of employees who left an organization during the pandemic have returned to a previous employer. Losing talent is hard. It is even more painful for the organization if the talent built a positive rapport with colleagues. Provide a positive departing experience for talent who is voluntarily leaving. There is a solid chance they could want to return, and they might be the talent your organization is seeking.

Due to the nature and complexity of the scope of business, not all organizations can launch a mainstream workforce redeployment plan. However, often feasible opportunities exist to shift employees into roles that are conducive to company growth. Creative efforts must be made when examining the potential jobs and employees for redeployment. Create an internal network so employees can have a better understanding of other departments’ functions. Conduct skills assessments to identify skills transferable into different roles. Use an Applicant Tracking System’s (ATS’s) internal application to collect the interest of employees interested in other company opportunities. Maintain performance and employee records in a robust onboarding platform.


To offset financial loss and maintain a competitive edge, include workforce redeployment initiatives in the company’s strategic plan. Companies must forge through merciless storms of talent wars, evolving technology, pandemics, inflation and supply chain issues among many other barriers that disrupt operations and threaten a company’s existence. The loss of talent and the negative publicity that results from layoffs can be a one-two punch that can impede profits and even existence. Taking initiatives, such as workforce redeployment, can mitigate those losses and help keep doors open longer. Having an agile workforce is in an investment that pays in the long run.