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Five Changes That Are Making Outplacement More Effective


Outplacement has been used to help transition employees out of organizations for decades. The assumption is that not much has changed over the years. There in fact are some interesting new developments that make outplacement more relevant and useful for organizations and individuals. Here are the are new changes that are taking place.

1. Improved technology

All of the leading mid to large outplacement firms (shameless plug – including The Frontier Group) now have online portals that help candidate manage their job search, search job boards, attend educational webinars and access essential template like resumes, cover letters and marketing plans. The days of the all-purpose client manual have been replaced by an online library that is constantly updated and improved.

2.Better Use of Assessments

In the past the prevalent assessment tool used by most outplacement firms was the Myers Briggs (MBTI) Personality Profile. Today you see a much wider range of assessments that are provided. This gives the candidate choice and a broader insight into what their career preferences are, what are their works styles as well as personality (MBTI is still useful).

3. More Individualized Coaching

While price compression has put pressure on outplacement firms to limit the number of coaching hours they can provide the trend shows that firms are willing to commit more hours to a candidate in order to get them effectively into the market. The key to providing these additional hours is to have the fully utilize the online portal for learning the essentials (resume, LinkedIn profile, etc.) and then have the coach provide value added assistance around improvements, strategy and execution. This makes the coaching sessions more productive.

4. Virtualization

In the past outplacement firms rented out large office spaces so that their candidates could get the productivity benefits of an office environment (printers, library of materials, administrative support). Today there are significantly fewer candidates coming into the office since they are very productive working out of their home offices. The typical candidate engagement today is to have an initial in person meeting followed up by phone/Skype sessions.

5. Focus On Re-Employment

The emphasis on outplacement now has solidly moved towards getting employees re-employed. In the past the emphasis was more on legal and process oriented factors. Now HR leaders really want to know how quickly their outplaced team members find new positions. Improvements in metric reporting now make it easier for these leaders to have detailed, segmented, analytical reports that show all of the key trends. 

Outplacement has made some significant improvements over the years leading to a better and more productive candidate experience and a more productive utilization of the organization’s funds.