Best practices for exit interviews

What suggestions or best practices would you suggest in collecting and intersecting data during exit interviews that could perhaps shine a light on issues that might be affecting underrepresented and / or marginalized attrition within your organization?

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Welcome to the party @yazzie! Alright, now to your question…

I think it should be best practice to collect demographic information in your exit survey (such as gender, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability, socioeconomic status, etc). Most exit surveys don’t have this information in the default template, but it can be added in. Additionally - your exit survey software should have the ability to slice data intersectionally. FYI - Culture Amp’s does.

Reviewing the quantitative data in the exit surveys can show if there are systemic differences in the employee experience. Compare the results of the exit survey by different intersectional identities. Ideally - there is no observed difference by demographic. If you do observe demographic differences, you can dive into the comments to try to uncover more detail. You can also ask questions in an exit survey, like “Most of the time, did you feel a sense of belonging at [company]?” Splitting the results of that question by Straight White Men and Women of Color can be a good indicator of how inclusive your culture is.

I personally believe that an exit survey should precede an exit interview (and I don’t feel that an exit survey should replace an exit interview, though I know that it happens in some high turnover environments). After an employee has had a chance to reflect and answer the exit survey questions, they should have a discussion with HR during their exit interview. Personal stories and anecdotes about identity and belonging should happen in an exit interview - this can round out what the data is showing in the exit surveys. I’ve never led an exit interview myself, so I’m coming up short on ideas for best practices or suggestions. Would love for others to chime in on this one!