Monday, 7 october 2019 | Redacción CEU
Dismissals have a very strong emotional impact on professionals. Employees expect that if they have no choice but to leave the company, it is due to one of these three possible scenarios: their personal decision, a job opportunity they cannot turn down or their corresponding retirement. Unfortunately, this is not always the case, even when workers are doing a good job. Sometimes, companies carry out restructuring processes or have to negotiate dismissals for non-disciplinary reasons. This does not mean that companies have to face what making these kinds of decisions implies (especially, in relation to workers) with a cold and indifferent attitude. Firms boast tools to become partly responsible and help employees in their future career. Outplacement services are one of them.
Outplacement programs are services which are proposed within the framework of Human Resources. They are aimed at the reinsertion of professionals who are affected by processes such as restructuring and relocation programs or cuts in companies. More and more firms decide to resort to this alternative in order to reduce the impact that this type of processes have on the affected professionals. Thanks to it, companies might contribute to improving aspects such as employability and the identification of skills and competencies that lead to a new professional and successful phase. In other words, these programs enable employees to find a new job in a shorter period of time. Besides, this formula includes psychological assistance aimed at professionals to overcome the negative emotions that generate job loss: frustration, negative thoughts, low self-esteem, depression, etc.
What leads a company to bet on outplacement programs?
A company that focuses on job reinsertion shows a greater moral and human commitment with the organization as a whole. The company assumes a responsibility that it is not obliged to take from a legal perspective (as long as it is not a lay-off plan that affects more than 50 people), but that in fact reveals its ethical values: the company does not leave employees to their fate when they are no longer essential. Other employees, suppliers, customers and investors may value this approach positively. Through it, the company is sending a message to those people who are key for work to go ahead and for the productivity of the company not to decline.
If a company allocates resources to this activity, it is because it expects to obtain benefits. Apart from contributing to improving the reputation and company’s image, outplacement programs offer other advantages to organizations. For example, they help to reduce conflicts that may occur both inside companies (poor working environment, tensions, low productivity, etc.) and outside them (strikes, complex negotiations, bad press, etc.). Given the company does not completely ignore the worker, the exit negotiations of these employees are easier.
For its part, these services also offer different benefits to employees who have been affected by dismissals. Thanks to job reinsertion programs, these workers may enhance their skills, discover their strengths, improve their weaknesses, gain a general perspective of the labor market and face the new situation with more tools at their disposal. In this way, what in principle is taken as a traumatic process might end up becoming an opportunity to progress in their career. However, this approach can also be interpreted as a standardization and rationalization of dismissals at work, which, by the way, is one of the situations that may cause more stress, together with family grieving and moves.