Six Steps to Successful Employee Offboarding

When an employee leaves a company, offboarding is the process of ensuring that they have a smooth and secure transition from their current role to their next one. This includes tasks such as ensuring that all their accounts are closed and transferred, returning all devices and that the former employee can proceed easily to their new job.  

Employee off-boarding is critical not just for securing company data, but also for maintaining a safe workplace. A recent study has shown that about 89% of employees still had access to their company’s network and data after termination and around 83% continued to access their old employer’s accounts. With insider cyber-attacks rising by 44% over the past two years, it is more critical than ever to properly off-board employees after they leave your company. 

Here are some of the key steps involved in successfully offboarding an employee along with some of the best practices for making the process smoother.  

1. Disable all accounts and change passwords

One of the first steps in offboarding an employee is to disable their user accounts and change any passwords they may have had access to. This helps to ensure that the former employee does not have any access to company data or systems. Additionally, it is important to update any additional identity security measures such as multi-factor authentication that the employee may have been using. 

2. Collect company-owned devices

The next step is to collect any company property that the employee may have, such as phones, laptops, keys, or ID badges. It is important to do this as soon as possible so that the employee does not have access to company resources. Additionally, you should check with the employee to make sure that they have not taken any confidential information with them. If an employee is working remotely, you will need to arrange for someone to collect their devices from them or have the employee ship their devices back. 

3. Securely erase company devices

Either remotely or when the company devices are returned, securely erase the information on those devices. This will ensure that any company data on the devices cannot be accessed by the former employee. Once this is done you can prepare the devices for use by a new employee.

4. Contact Third-Parties

You should also notify any customers, partners or vendors, with whom the employee worked and provide them with the new contact information for your company. This will ensure that there are no potential information issues and that third-parties are able to continue working with your company without interruption.

5. Update your company’s HR records

Finally, you will need to update your company’s HR records to reflect the employee’s departure. This includes removing them from any health insurance or other benefits they may have been receiving. You will also need to update their contact information and emergency contact information. Once this is done, you can send out a farewell message to current employees. Additionally, by keeping open communication with the departing employee, you can help to make the transition as easy as possible for them. 

6. Follow cyber-compliance policies

When offboarding an employee, it is important to make certain you are operating within compliance of any relevant cyber-security regulations. For example, the National Institute of Standards and Technology Cyber Security Framework (NIST CSF) requires companies to take specific measures when deleting employee data. Additionally, ISO 27001 is a standard for information security management and requires companies to have a plan for terminating employees. The Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) requires companies to protect the privacy of employee health information. By following all applicable regulations, you can help to ensure that your company complies when offboarding employees. 

You can make sure that your company’s offboarding procedure is effective and safe by following these procedures. Whether an employee leaves your company by their choice or yours, offboarding them as quickly and efficiently as possible is key to limiting any exposure of your business to a disgruntled former employee. By following these tips, you can minimize the amount of time they have access to your IT systems and ensure that they depart on good terms. If you have any questions about how to execute these tips or would like help with offboarding your employees, feel free to reach out to us at 

Pitfalls/Solutions for Employee Onboarding

Three Critical Suggestions for Employee Onboarding in 2021 

While employee onboarding is crucial to support the success of a new hire, it is too often an ill-managed process for most companies. Whether the procedure is slow-moving, there are logistical problems between HR and IT, or employee identity setup is hindered by a laundry list of SaaS applications – there is a slew of common challenges that can contribute to a chaotic initiation for both the employee and the company. 

There are three things to consider when looking to improve employee onboarding in 2021 and beyond: 

Track and Automate the Process 

The top issue for all companies is onboarding speed without sacrificing quality or accuracy. When a recent hire joins the team, everyone is anxious to get started – especially the manager and new employee! There are legal, compliance, and company policy items that need to be covered to get a new person on board. When a company is rapidly expanding, these steps are sometimes missed and slow the whole process down. 

A complete tracking process that includes all of the necessary onboarding items and their dependencies is critical to a smooth and efficient process. For instance, should the employee be given their email credentials before they pass a background check? Without a good process, companies tend to have a disjointed onboarding with stops and starts that slow everything down and create potential risks to the business. When the process is not well run, people often try to rush things bypassing the process to get the new hire on board – opening the company to potential legal or industry compliance issues.  

If the steps for onboarding are also tracked through software – that’s even better! With the right automated tracking process, onboarding can go from as much as four weeks to less than a week while still completing all the necessary steps. 

Eliminate the Insecurity of Email 

Increasingly, all companies and industries are being affected by cyber-security issues – from ransomware to phishing attacks. Everyone has been hit or knows someone who has. For this reason, industry compliance frameworks like HIPAA, FINRA, and NIST CSF, are limiting companies’ ability to use email to onboard new employees. 

It is no longer okay to ask an employee to fill out a W-4 or I-9 and send it back via email, much less fill out background check or drug screening information. Companies are left with either executing these processes in person – which is slow and sometimes impossible – or using secure portal software to automate the process. Finding a cost-effective way to implement one of these systems is an increasingly necessary challenge for companies in 2021 and beyond. 

Get HR and IT Coordinated 

It’s no secret – HR and IT people have trouble communicating. Though they come from different worlds, your organization’s HR and IT professionals stand to benefit the most from a fast, automated employee onboarding process. From security risks to unnecessary hours and costs, botched onboarding puts a lot at stake. How can your HR and IT staff manage onboarding when they aren’t equipped with the tools to do so efficiently or effectively? 

Typically, a new hire moves between their hiring manager, the HR department, and the IT department, throughout their onboarding to handle basic tasks like establishing their identity and access to SaaS applications they will need. This back-and-forth leads to inconsistency in important identifying information, security access, management structure, and software applications that have been licensed for their use.  


Companies attempting to manage employee onboarding without controls and automation risk serious repercussions down the line. Companies should look for software and service providers that not only streamline onboarding, but can also provide tools to manage employee information and identity during their employment. Additionallysuch providers should also have the capabilities to automate and de-risk the employee off-boarding process (more on that later). With the right technology partner, you can rest assured the entire employee life cycle is handled with speed, compliance, and accuracy.