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7 Items You Should Have on Your Termination Checklist

Terminations are hard no matter what, and depending on the circumstances, they can result in a lot of emotion and potentially some drama. Due to the potential for emotions and a subsequent whirlwind of adjustment for managers and employees, it's important to have a concrete termination checklist that is specific to your company and system. Ensuring that all tasks have been completed is vital to office operations and security. Though we like to think that no one would purposely harm a company, disgruntled former employees could try to do something to "get back" at you – so make sure all bases are covered before he or she has the chance to do anything dishonorable.
1. Termination Letter and Agreements
You should provide your employee with a termination letter, which will inform of their dismissal from their current job and outline why they were dismissed, what they need to know about wages, insurance, and other such information. Take care of the tedious paperwork as soon as possible before proceeding to other tasks.

2. Lock Computer Access
Don't allow the chance for the terminated employee to gain access to confidential client or company information. After the termination meeting, they have no reason to need to get into the system. Make sure their emails have been forwarded, passwords have been changed, and any other potential IT access points have been shut down.

3. Company Property Return
You should have an inventory of company property that all employees have in their possession and go down the checklist for all items that should be returned to you. You don't want the employee to leave only to realize that you forgot to have them return an expensive piece of equipment (i.e. phone, laptop, tablet, etc.).

4. Operational Tasks
Operational items tend to get overlooked as companies accidentally leave terminated employees on their website or forget to change their voicemail message, forward their email to the appropriate person, notify employee's contacts, etc. While the other points on the list are primarily for internal purposes, this is important as it's primarily client-facing.

5. Signature Authority
If that employee has any signature authority, make sure the proper people are notified to remove that authority. Once again, for security purposes, this is necessary to ensure that all client and company information is kept safe.

6. Exit Interview
Though it may seem like the least significant thing you can do after a termination, this is something that can be of great value to you. Sometimes you have to take the employee's critiques with a grain of salt, but other times it can serve as valuable information that will help you make positive changes in the future.

7. Communicate Changes to Employees
If changes aren't communicated to your employees, they will fill in the blanks themselves, which is the last thing you want to happen. Communicate as soon as possible to let employees know that their co-worker has been terminated and what changes will occur because of this as it will affect their daily workflow.

We can't stress the importance of this checklist enough. You should work with your HR representative to come up with a checklist that is unique to your company.

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