Terminations were never easy and moving to remote work definitely doesn’t make them any easier. At least when terminations were in-person there wasn’t the possibility of technology cutting out halfway through the phrase “you’re fired”. Although there is always possibility of error during a termination, there are ways you can minimize mistakes when terminating an employee remotely. Here are some of them:
Choose an Appropriate Platform
When a face-to-face meeting isn’t possible or practical, a video call or virtual meeting will be your best option. There are quite a few virtual programs you can choose from when setting up a video-call for a termination. It would be best to choose a program where you and the employee being terminated can see everyone on the meeting. Also, be sure to choose a platform you are familiar with to avoid technology errors.
Involve the Right People
As with any termination, it is best for the employee’s direct supervisor and either a member of HR or another leader to be present during the termination meeting. Once the termination is complete, be sure to work with your IT department to immediately remove any remote access the terminated employee may have to your company network. You might want to consider removing access just before termination so the remote employee can’t do any damage to your company. A remote employee can do more damage for longer than an employee who physically leaves their equipment in the office.
During termination meetings, there’s a lot you need to cover. After delivering the news, make sure to inform the employee about final pay, benefits termination dates, severance, and any vacation payouts they may be entitled to. Also discuss with the employee what projects they were working on and who they can be transferred to. Have a plan for the employee to return all company property including equipment, badges, documents etc. You can provide the employee options such as having the employee drop everything off at a specified date and time or shipping it back to the worksite in company provided, prepaid boxes.
Stay in Compliance
Terminations are hard enough without compliance issues. Before starting a termination meeting, go over your state’s final pay laws and your company’s termination policies and practices. Make sure that all participants in the meeting understand the policies and applicable employment laws. This will ensure compliance and minimize issues.
Following this advice will help you conduct a successful termination meeting even when an employee is remote. If you have any questions, feel free to reach out to Helpside.