Employee Exit Checklist

Table of Contents

    The employee exit checklist is a tool or guide used by HR professionals to streamline the departure process for employees leaving the organization. It serves as a guide for both the employees and HR professionals, ensuring a smooth transition, organized handover, and overall efficiency. The checklist plays a strategic role in protecting the interests of the departing employee and the organization. It contributes to a positive conclusion to the employment journey, making it an essential component of the HR process. 


    What is employee exit?

    Employee exit is an event in the employee lifecycle when they depart from their current organization. This event impacts both the employee and the organization. The employee exit involves tasks such as returning company assets, conducting exit interviews, ensuring a smooth handover of responsibilities, and addressing administrative matters like finalizing payroll and benefits. 


    Employee exit checklist sample


    1. Pre-Departure Preparation:
    • Notify HR and relevant departments: Inform HR and relevant departments (IT, Facilities, Finance) about the employee’s departure.
    • Schedule exit interview: Arrange an exit interview with HR to gather feedback and insights from the departing employee.
    • Review employment contract: Ensure compliance with any contractual obligations regarding notice period, non-compete agreements, or confidentiality clauses.
    1. HR and Administrative Tasks:
    • Final paycheck calculation: Calculate the employee’s final paycheck, including any accrued vacation or leave days, bonuses, and reimbursements.
    • Benefits termination: Provide information on COBRA benefits continuation or other post-employment benefit options.
    • Return company property: Collect all company-owned equipment, including laptops, phones, access badges, keys, and any other assets.
    • Access termination: Disable employee access to company systems, emails, and physical premises to maintain security.
    • Exit interview: Conduct a structured exit interview to gather feedback on the employee’s experience and reasons for leaving.
    1. IT and Technology:
    • Email and system access: Disable employee access to company email, systems, and databases to safeguard sensitive information.
    • Data transfer or backup: Transfer any relevant files or data owned by the departing employee, ensuring compliance with data privacy regulations.
    • Passwords and accounts: Reset or deactivate employee passwords for all company accounts and platforms.
    1. Knowledge Transfer and Documentation:
    • Handover of responsibilities: Arrange for the transfer of the departing employee’s ongoing tasks and projects to relevant team members.
    • Documentation review: Review and update any documentation, manuals, or procedures owned by the departing employee.
    • Knowledge sharing: Encourage the departing employee to document key processes, contacts, and insights to facilitate knowledge transfer.
    1. Farewell and Transition:
    • Farewell announcement: Inform the team and relevant stakeholders about the employee’s departure, acknowledging their contributions and wishing them well.
    • Transition plan: Develop a transition plan to ensure a smooth handover of responsibilities and continuity of operations.
    • Exit survey: Offer the departing employee the opportunity to complete an anonymous exit survey to provide feedback on their experience.
    • Networking and referrals: Support the departing employee with networking opportunities, referrals, and recommendations for future career endeavours.


    For any thriving workforce feedback is an essential element for enhancing the scope of improvement. To ensure this happens in a smooth and effective manner: 

    • Encourage departing employees to participate in an exit survey. 
    • Emphasize the importance of providing constructive feedback to facilitate organizational growth and improvement. 
    • Ensure employees understand that their opinions contribute to positive changes within the organization. 


    The checklist for employee exit encompasses various crucial aspects of the departure process, such as asset return, exit interviews, benefits, final payments, and task completion. It highlights the significance of effective communication, networking, and feedback for continual growth. The checklist ensures a hassle-free exit and promotes a positive farewell as employees move on.  


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