Save Your Brand after a RIF!

Your brand reputation is critical these days. As Dan Coffey, Outplacement Practice Leader at IMPACT Group, puts it, “Building an employment brand has become highly important in today’s economy. When an employee is deciding if they want to work at a company, they can go to Glass Door and get immediate information about whether people like working there or not.”

Job seekers and potential clients have vast amounts of information at their fingertips. It’s important to protect your brand and ensure a positive image during both the ups and downs of business, including mergers, acquisitions, or downsizings.

Reductions in force (RIF) are hard on everyone, regardless of the reason. From the separated employees to the decision makers, many lives are affected when there are major shifts at the office. While you are assisting your separated employees to land the best opportunity with outplacement services, don’t forget to assess the questions and needs of your remaining employees to uphold morale and your brand reputation.

Survivor syndrome can manifest itself in remaining employees after they’ve watched co-workers and leaders be let go. Chatter around the water cooler may become bleak. The atmosphere at your office may become somber. Your remaining team might feel:

  • Increased levels of job dissatisfaction
  • Decreased levels of staff motivation
  • Decreased perception of promotion opportunities
  • Decreased levels of morale
  • Increased fears about job security

All of these issues can lead to a major hit to your employment brand. To combat these symptoms, provide employees with the opportunity to express their questions and concerns. They may experience a loss of confidence in themselves and in the company. They may feel resentment when additional work falls on their shoulders. Take the time to share your vision for the company’s future and to hear them out regarding their concerns – it can make a world of difference.

“Focus on a clear business reason, identify ways that the RIF may affect the organization both internally and externally, and allow time for comprehensive planning for both the impacted employees and also the employees left behind,” says Michelle Morettini, Manager of Outplacement Services at IMPACT Group.

“Develop a plan for the remaining employees that addresses communication, workload, business reason, and if necessary, team re-building. They may not have been laid off, but chances are they have emotions and opinions about what happened.”

Your talent is the life of your business – and your brand. When significant changes hit the office, transparency is key to ensure a successful transition for your company, your employees, and your reputation. To strategically plan for a reduction in force, contact IMPACT Group for outplacement support.