How to Let Someone Go from Their Job
Firing an employee is a difficult but sometimes necessary task that every manager and organization must confront at some point. Looking someone in the eye and telling them that their job is no longer available can be really hard, but there are some things you can do to make the process smoother.
Start With an Open and Honest Conversation
An open and honest conversation is one of the most important steps in this process. You need to explain why the employee is being let go in a way that is clear and respectful. Talk through the company’s decision-making process, and address any questions the employee may have.
Be Clear on Job Duties and Pay
Lay out any outstanding job duties, such as handing off or transitioning projects to other members of the team, and explain how the employee may go about completing those tasks. It’s also important to inform them of their final paycheck and its date—this ensures the employee is aware of their due wages.
Outline What Legal Rights They Have
Make sure you relay to the employee what legal rights they have moving forward. The employee may be entitled to:
- Unemployment benefits forfeited if they voluntarily leave their job
- Company healthcare coverage until the end of the month
- Vacation and paid time off that has already been earned
Show Gratitude for Their Work
Framing this conversation in the right way is key. Thank the employee for the work they’ve done and offer to provide references if they are needed. Showing your appreciation goes a long way in the firing process.
Provide Resources and References
In addition to offering a letter of reference, it’s important to provide the employee with alternative job opportunities, potential contacts, and any resources they may benefit from such as career counseling services to further their job search.
Letting someone go from their job is never easy. But if done correctly, managers can ensure it’s done with empathy and respect for the employee.