Despite outplacement being a well-established practice within many organisations, it’s surprising that a clear definition of best practice outplacement is still not clearly understood by many of the organisations that purchase outplacement services.

The reason for this is that organisations often have basic expectations of the outcomes that should be delivered by an outplacement exercise. In our recent survey into the outplacement experiences of Australian HR managers, we found that little was being done to assess the impact of an outplacement exercise on both outgoing employees and the organisation, suggesting that many organisations simply don’t know how to measure a program’s success and gauge whether they’re receiving best practice outplacement.

However, like any other business investment, outplacement can only be considered valuable if it provides a measurable return. An outplacement exercise must therefore have a tangible and positive impact on the organisation’s performance, its employees, and most importantly, its retrenched staff. Specifically, outplacement needs to achieve the objective of helping staff successfully transition to the next phase of their career.

Best practice outplacement can only be achieved if the right outplacement services are provided – and if the provider is held accountable to delivering against the desired outcomes.