More and more, offering outplacement and job search assistance is seen as the “right thing to do.” It demonstrates your willingness to help displaced employees make a soft landing, while protecting your business’ reputation. Remember, displaced employees remain in touch with their former colleagues and can write online reviews. It makes good business sense to help turn their unfortunate circumstance into a meaningful and productive one.

Here are five ways offering outplacement services can help your business:

1. Outplacement can reduce the pain.

Both your pain and that of the displaced employee. On-site outplacement assistance allows you to hand off the terminated employee to a professional who can deliver care within the first 48 hours.

2. Outplacement can protect your reputation.

Layoffs and terminations can capture headlines on a slow news day. Providing job search assistance may soften the bad news seen by your clients and other stakeholders.

3. Outplacement puts you on solid ground with those who remain.

While there are understandable and justifiable business reasons why you’re terminating an employee, if you don’t provide the best possible support for them as they leave, you risk losing support from those who remain. And they may wonder if they’re next.

4. The terminated employee who receives outplacement assistance will get a new job faster.

When the terminated employee gets a new job faster, they’ll get a new paycheck faster, reducing unemployment compensation and other costs borne in whole or in part by you, the former employer.

5. Outplacement protects against legal claims.

When an employer offers outplacement in a separation agreement, it decreases the risk of legal claims against your organization. If the employee never takes advantage of the outplacement services you offer, you can always ask, “Why did you choose not to take advantage of it?” This can be very valuable if there is ever a legal claim.

Regardless of what other benefits you offer (salary continuation, healthcare/COBRA payments, etc.), outplacement should be considered as “job search assistance.” Always write “outplacement and job search assistance” into your separation agreement — always.


The most difficult decisions employers must make are the ones involving the fate of their employees. When informing a valued employee that you are moving in another direction, away from them, what comes next? Providing a softer landing benefits not only the displaced employee, but also you, the employer.

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