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Offboarding checklist for structured exit management

The first impression is crucial. But the last one is no less important. Employees who leave the company should therefore be supported just as professionally as new employees. With structured offboarding, you can also leave a positive impression on departing employees and turn them into brand ambassadors for your company. This guide provides you with a free template that you can use to create your own individual offboarding checklist and ensure a professional offboarding experience.

What is an offboarding checklist? And why do I need it?

Why is a checklist important?

Checklists are ideal for ensuring that no important steps are forgotten when implementing a process. A checklist should be used, especially if the process is easy to standardize and tasks are repeated regularly. The offboarding of departing employees is largely the same as onboarding, which is why the use of a checklist is also recommended for exit management.

By using a checklist, you ensure that everyone involved knows at all times which tasks need to be completed and when. This avoids confusion, stress and frustration and ensures that the offboarding process runs smoothly.

What does the offboarding checklist contain?

The offboarding checklist contains all the necessary tasks that need to be completed when an employee leaves the organization. If the offboarding process differs between individual positions, you should draw up a checklist for each position.

Conveniently, an offboarding checklist is created in the form of checkboxes. These can simply be ticked off as soon as a task has been completed. Supervisors and HR managers can see at a glance which activities have already been completed and which are still outstanding.

The checklist for offboarding consists of numerous tasks, the majority of which can be applied to all companies. Other tasks need to be added specifically for individual companies. It is helpful to group tasks according to individual offboarding phases. This ensures greater clarity and provides information about the current priority, so that those involved can always concentrate on the important tasks in the stressful day-to-day routine.

The format in which you create your offboarding checklists does not matter at first. As a rule, companies use simple Excel files or PDF documents. In the course of digitalization, however, digital offboarding solutions are also becoming increasingly popular for this task, with which offboarding can be made more transparent and automated. This saves you additional time and costs in offboarding.

Template for your offboarding checklist

Our template for offboarding contains all the important tasks involved in the offboarding of employees in companies. We have already assigned them to the individual phases of offboarding for you. The individual phases are:

  • Week of termination
  • 2 weeks before the last working day
  • Last working week
  • Last working day
  • Time after retirement
You can use this template as the basis for the offboarding checklist in your company and simply add the additional tasks that arise for you.

Week after termination

Offboarding begins with the employee's resignation. In the first few days afterwards, the main focus is on getting offboarding underway and starting important processes. These include, among other things:
Offboarding checklist - 1 day after termination
  • Prepare paperwork: First, make sure that the notice of termination has been received or handed over correctly and that the responsible persons have been instructed to prepare important documents such as employment references or references.
  • Formalities: Clarify important organizational questions, e.g. what leave entitlement still exists, what the last working day is and what outstanding payments the employee is still entitled to.
  • Communication: Inform your direct colleagues about the termination. This will give them an early idea of which tasks need to be taken over and in which areas a detailed handover is necessary.
  • Plan replacement: Discuss with your line manager whether a replacement is necessary and prepare the recruitment process.
  • Offboarding checklist for employee: Start the offboarding process on the employee's side and hand out a corresponding offboarding checklist with to-dos.

2 weeks before the last working day

At this stage at the latest, the departure should be prepared in a targeted manner and the necessary measures implemented. This means in particular
Offboarding checklist - 2 weeks after termination
  • Plan remaining time: Plan the remaining days together (HR, employee, supervisor, etc.). When should the remaining vacation be taken, which specialist tasks should still be attended, how should outstanding payments be processed, etc.
  • Start knowledge transfer: Make sure that the transfer of knowledge has been discussed and agreed with all parties involved and that a corresponding process is set in motion.
  • Communication: Inform all other departments of the employee's departure. Also point out ways in which contact can be maintained between the employee and the company after their departure.

Last working week

As the last working day approaches, it's time to finish offboarding tasks.
Offboarding checklist - 2 weeks before the last day of work
  • Knowledge & data transfer: Ensure that the handover is completed and that there is sufficient time to answer any unanswered questions. At the same time, all documents should now be moved from private storage to central company networks and important correspondence and account access should be handed over to superiors or colleagues.
  • Exit interviews: The last week also provides the perfect setting for the last official interviews. The offboarding meeting with the HR department is a good opportunity to obtain feedback from employees on the offboarding process and the company in general. The performance review with the line manager, on the other hand, can provide helpful input on areas for improvement in the specialist department or internal communication.

Last working day

The last working day is used to give the departing employees a proper farewell and to ensure that all offboarding tasks have been implemented correctly and completely.
Offboarding checklist - Last working day
  • Documents: Check that all documents are correctly signed and stamped and hand over all documents.
  • Technical offboarding: As part of technical offboarding, accept the equipment and work materials previously handed out and document the return accordingly.
  • Completing the handover: Check together once again that all contacts and access to accounts have been transferred and block the individual accesses to software and web services.

After last working day

After the employee has left the company, the offboarding process is completed internally and communicated externally.
  • Communication: Inform important external contacts (partners, customers, etc.) about the departure and introduce the successor if necessary.
  • IT check: Make sure that all accesses have been transferred and blocked.
  • Update information: Bring all relevant places (internal wiki, organization chart, etc.) up to date. Use the feedback from the interviews to optimize your offboarding concept.
  • Reuse equipment: Inventory returned appliances & furniture and ensure that they are reused sensibly or, if necessary, disposed of or sold.

Download: Offboarding checklist

Don't forget any more tasks with our free offboarding checklist!


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