If you’re like most employers, you strongly dislike the thought of spending significant amounts of time, money, and effort on recruiting and training new employees only to have them seek other opportunities before you’ve had a chance to realize even a small RIO. In today’s hot job market, this scenario may even seem inevitable. However, strategies exist designed to help employers maximize their chances of keeping valuable players on their team. One of these is known as the “stay interview.”
A stay interview involves one-on-one interaction between an employer, or the employer’s representative in management, and an employee. The goal of a stay interview is to determine which factors play a substantial role in that particular person’s job satisfaction level and to help increase the likelihood of them remaining with the company. Stay interviews differ from traditional annual employee reviews in that they aren’t focused on employee performance — stay interviews are for employees who are already performing at levels that meet or exceed your expectations, which is why you want to identify ways in which you can encourage them to remain with the company for an indefinite period of time going forward.
How to Conduct a Stay Interview
Conducting a stay interview should begin by thanking the employee for attending and then getting right to the point by explaining the point of the interview. Explain that the conversation is informal and that it’s designed to benefit both employee and employer by identifying what the employee values most about the job and what factors would create a situation or an environment that would cause the employee to seek other pastures.
Questions to Ask During a Stay Interview
Many employers begin their stay interviews by asking the employee what they most look forward to in the morning before they start their workday. This provides an excellent way to pinpoint key components in employee satisfaction. Other questions to ask during the course of the interview include what would make the job more satisfying to the employee, what talents they have that they feel are being underutilized in the position, and what parts of the job they would change if given the opportunity. You should also ask them under what circumstances they would be tempted to leave, what they like least about the job, and how management may better support them.
Concluding the Interview
Closing the interview with a summary of key points is vital to ensure that both you and the employee are on the same page. The interview should end on a positive note with a commitment to developing a customized employee retention plan based on actionable factors identified as a result of the interview.