When a company needs to say goodbye to a sizable portion of its staff, they tend to think the whole thing through, but that’s not often the case for people who decide to quit on their own.  When someone is about to quit, a well-prepared organization is able to spot the signs earlier, ideally retaining more good employees talent acquisition.

Even with a great early intervention process, people leave their jobs every day, and every company should extend its process to leverage insights, foster open communication, and when necessary, put risk controls in place for the people who do end up leaving. What’s more, a company with its finger on the pulse is less likely to fall victim to the trends of the day – quiet quitting and “rage applying.”

The Cost of a Bad Exit

Layoffs are nothing compared to normal workforce turnover. In a typical year, companies lose about 18% of their workforce to people leaving voluntarily. In the US alone, those voluntary exits amount to $1 trillion in costs to companies. Not only does the company lose the productivity of that worker, but they also need to use resources to fill the new position, and every person who quits creates additional risk. The threat of theft, fraud, and low productivity can all increase leading up to an exit, and companies are exposed every day.

Despite this, not many companies have strategies for spotting signs of quitting early to potentially save an employee from leaving. Few companies have addressed ways of reducing costs due to turnover, nor do many shift their approach to employees who show signs of quitting, even though 70% of intellectual property theft occurs in the 90 days leading up to someone’s resignation.

Working from home has increased the potential cost of an employee exit. Now that 58% of office workers work from home at least one day a week, issues are even more pronounced for companies. For example, studies show that remote work increases the cost of a data breach. A recent report from IBM estimates that the average breach costs $1.07m more if most employees work from home ($5.54m vs $4.24m for in-office companies.)

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