Your Outplacement Procurement and RFP FAQs: Answered

December 03, 2020 by Josh Hrala

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Creating an RFP list of outplacement providers? Here are some of the commonly asked questions we receive from procurement professionals to make the process as easy as possible.

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What Is the Best Outplacement Participant Experience?

The best outplacement participant experience starts out with a smooth outplacement onboarding process where your departing workers learn about the outplacement process and get paired with a dedicated, one-on-one coach. During these early stages, participants also have their resumes crafted by expert writers and have their LinkedIn pages optimized as well.

Our coaches work one-on-one with participants to understand their wants and needs. After this assessment, participants work with their coach to come up with a customized plan to achieve these goals.

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When not receiving direct coaching, participants are also able to continue their job hunt with the help of a virtual outplacement platform that comes stocked with eLearning tools, webinars, a built-in social network, and much more.

All of these steps in the process are designed specifically to enable the best outplacement participant experience possible. However, the biggest factor when it comes to participant experience is landing a new role.

At Careerminds, we work with participants until they land their next role, ensuring that the participant will never be without support during their job search no matter how long it takes to land.

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Outplacement Approaches: What Is the Blended Approach?

There are many outplacement approaches out there that firms may take to get participants back to work in a new, meaningful role. The two most popular approaches can simply be boiled down to a people-focused approach and a technology-focused approach.

A people-focused approach consists mainly of coaching and networking. This approach stems from the traditional outplacement process which was done in-person, typically in a group setting inside the offices of the outplacement provider.

The second approach relies on technology to aid participants in landing their next role. Newer virtual outplacement providers typically provide a platform for participants to use on their own terms. eLearning, virtual webinars, and social networking are hallmarks of this approach.

As you can see, both of these approaches have their pros and cons. The best approach is to blend them together to create a people-focused, tech-driven approach to outplacement. This is exactly what we’ve done at Careerminds.

Using the powers of the internet and dedicated, one-on-one coaches, our participants get the best of both worlds. They receive coaching that is personalized, flexible, and extremely easy to receive at any time thanks to increases in communication software over the years. Our outplacement platform connects fellow job seekers, a coaching staff, previous participants, and much more, including eLearning tools and webinar events.

Our blended approach using technology to bring people together, establish a coach-participant bond, and gets participants back to work on their terms.

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Outplacement Technology in 2021: What’s Trending?

COVID-19 has forever changed the way the vast majority of people will work in the future. Outplacement technology trends have changed a lot, too, to meet the needs of the modern client and participant.

This largely means a switch to virtual operations. At Careerminds, we’ve been providing virtual outplacement services for over a decade, adapting and changing our approach every time technologies and the job market change.

So what outplacement technology trends are happening in 2021? Here are a few:

  • Virtual, Yet Personal, Coaching
    • Dedicated, one-on-one coaches work with individuals to understand their unique goals. Technologies like Zoom, Skype, Slack, and others make these personalized meetings easier than ever before.

    Social Networking

    • Networking, like many other aspects of the job hunt, is now conducted solely online or from a remote setting. This is where Careerminds’ built-in social network comes into play. Participants can now meet up with fellow job seekers in a safe, remote environment then keep those connections on other platforms such as LinkedIn.
  • PerfectMatch
    • As the job search becomes more complicated thanks to increasingly sophisticated Applicant Tracking Systems (ATS), PerfectMatch is here to help. With PerfectMatch, participants can gain insights into how keywords used by these systems can be implemented into resumes and cover letters to help defeat these systems, increasing the chances that a resume will get into the hands of a real human being.
  • eLearning Platform
    • All great, tech-driven outplacement providers need to have self-guided eLearning tools for participants to help aid their job search. These platforms provide training, networking, webinar access, and much more for participants to use while also getting dedicated coaching at the same time.
  • Until Placement Is Still a Must
    • All of these technologies fall flat if they are not backed up by undaunting support. Careerminds works with participants until they land their next role, which means that they will never go without support during their job hunt no matter how long it takes. Until placement support is vital to ensure all participants, regardless of tenure, skill level, or job position, have the time and resources they need to make a great transition.

Outplacement technology in 2021 will be dominated by systems and platforms that bring people together. Technology, especially in the outplacement space, should serve to erode barriers instead of creating new ones. In the future, Careerminds will be implementing AI and machine learning to further expand our tech-focused process.

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What Is the Average Percent of Participants That Land New Roles With Outplacement?

When looking for an outplacement provider, the biggest question most people have is: how many people actually land a new role by going through the process? After all, landing a new role is the entire point of hiring an outplacement provider in the first place (other than protecting employer brand, doing right by employees, and reducing survivor sickness).

The answer is a bit complicated, though, because it is entirely dependent on how a provider offers their services and for how long. Traditionally, providers would implement term limits that meant participants would only receive service for a set period of time. This meant that a good amount of participants would eventually have to finish the job search alone, causing placement numbers to drop.

At Careerminds, we believe that all participants require different levels of support. And, in order to fulfill those needs, we offer until placement services. This means that we will work with participants throughout their entire job search, making our placement rate extremely high compared to traditional providers.

Until placement allows us to offer services to participants of all skill levels, tenures, and positions from entry-level all the way up to the C-suite, ensuring that their goals are achieved no matter how long it may take. Our goal is to help all participants land new, meaningful roles, and that means sticking with them the whole way through.

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What Is the Average Time to Engage Participants? Under 24 Hours

When an outplacement provider is contracted to help departing employees land new roles, the first step in the process is to connect with them and foster engagement with the provider so that the job search can start in earnest as fast as possible.

The average time to engage participants can rely on a couple of factors. First, the employer has to do all they can to ensure that their displaced workers understand what outplacement is and how they can start using the service. At Careerminds, we help with this messaging to ensure that participants start engaging as soon as possible. In fact, we have an 80 percent engagement rate or higher because of how we reach out and extend service offers to these soon-to-be participants. Typically, our first engagement happens within 24 hours of us receiving a list of participants.

Second, there are many reasons why a worker may choose to forego outplacement entirely. They may, for example, have another job lined up already, want to retire, or may simply want to take some time off before their job hunt. For this reason, Careerminds only charges clients for participants who do truly engage with our services, which allows for these various situations to unfold without costing the client.

As you can see, the average time to engage participants shifts around. However, at Careerminds, we do everything in our power to engage participants as soon as an event happens by reaching out to them with the contact information provided to us and also helping managers performing reductions to establish a communication plan for that workers know what outplacement is and how it can benefit their transition.

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What Is Your Average Engagement Rate? Above 80 Percent

The average engagement rate for outplacement participants varies from provider to provider largely based on two factors: how well an outplacement firm reaches out to displaced workers and how well the organization doing the reduction event establishes a baseline knowledge of outplacement to workers and provide a way to contact them.

At Careerminds, we average at or above an 80 percent engagement rate with participants. We do this by reaching out with informative, easy-to-understand welcome packets that explain our service and what the participant should expect if they decide to continue the process. Our goal is to engage participants as soon as possible to get them started working closely with a dedicated, one-on-one career coach who will tailor the program to the participant’s individual needs.

In order to achieve a high engagement rate, outplacement providers depend on having up-to-date contact information for those going through the reduction event. This means having personal email addresses, phone numbers, and physical addresses.

Communicating what outplacement is and how it can help individuals transition to their next role is also important so that workers fully understand that they have a support system ready and waiting for them. To aid clients with this process, we help craft this messaging to ensure that workers are ready to start receiving support as soon as possible.

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What Is Your Average Time to Land During Outplacement? 12 Weeks

The average time to land during outplacement can range from a quick placement to a long job search. This is because every single participant is unique, has varying skill levels, wants different things in life and work, and requires different levels of support.

For some, the outplacement process might boil down to landing any new role in the same position at an outside company, for example. For others, they may use this transitional period to really explore their wants and needs by making a complete career change into a new position or even starting their own business.

Because of all of these varying factors, the average time to land during outplacement needs to be turned from a time-focused question into an outcome-focused question. At Careerminds, we work with participants until they land their next role, which means that no matter how long it takes, we’ll be there, at no additional cost to the client.

This method of outplacement means that participants have the freedom to pursue their interests, take bigger swings, and eventually land a new, meaningful role. Finding a job to have a job is one thing. Finding the ideal next job that ticks all of a participant’s boxes is another. And it’s what we strive to do each and every day. We typically find that participants land within 12 weeks, give or take their needs.

In conclusion, the average time to land during outplacement is solely dependent on the needs of the participant. Either way, long or short, we will be here supporting them along the way.

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What Is the Best Outplacement Customer Experience?

What goes into having a great outplacement customer experience? After all, it’s easy to understand what makes a good participant experience – coaching relationships, a strong support system, and, in the end, landing a new, meaningful role. On the customer/client side of things, it’s a bit different.

The best outplacement customer experience starts with a great onboarding experience where clients gain insights into how their outplacement provider works and what their processes are. This means that having a stellar client success team is a must for any modern-day outplacement provider. These teams do everything humanly possible to ensure that the needs of the client are met.

Careerminds, for example, becomes a true partner of our clients. We aid them not only in helping their displaced workers find new roles but during the entire reduction process from holding the actual notification meeting to coaching managers and survivors, ensuring that every step is supported by experts.

Transparency is also a huge factor when looking for a great customer experience. Clients need to have access to all of the data that the provider has to ensure that the process is working for their ex-workers.

And finally, the very best outplacement customer experience comes from knowing that your departing workers will be supported until they land a job. Providers that utilize term limits or only offer limited support often end up leaving participants high and dry when they need them the most. Careerminds takes an until placement approach that ensures this will never happen.

All of these factors combine to create the best outplacement customer experience possible.

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How Do You Customize Outplacement Across the Globe?

Using a global outplacement provider is a great way to provide support to displaced workers no matter where they are geographical. But how do you customize outplacement across the globe?

To successfully provide top-notch service to individuals around the globe, Careerminds employs local, dedicated career coaches to help participants navigate their job search. This means that our one-on-one coaching program is specifically geared to understand local customs, laws, and regulations that can aid workers land their next role.

Our digital platform, which offers networking opportunities, eLearning tools, recurring webinars, and much more, also comes in a variety of languages and addresses issues based on the needs of the specific participant, regardless of where they are in the world.

We strongly believe in a tech-drive, people-first approach that customizes the process from start to finish based on the individual needs of the participant. To that end, our global approach to outplacement ensures that our process adapts to the culture and laws that surround where our participants may be.

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How Much Does Outplacement Cost Around the Globe?

The cost of outplacement is always a top concern when shopping for a provider. Typically, there are different levels of support that companies can choose from based on their needs. For example, a C-suite service will cost more than a lower-tier service because of the work required to land C-suite level jobs.

Most outplacement providers carry these tiers to their global processes as well. The best way to understand the cost of global outplacement is to speak with a representative who can better understand your needs and craft a plan that works for both you and your outbound employees.

Global services are a great way to ensure that you have a support system in place for workers no matter where they are. Careerminds global outplacement utilizes local coaches who work one-on-one with participants to land their next role. Our digital platform also reflects the participant’s location. In short, our global approach to outplacement fully addresses cultural values, languages, regulations, and much more.

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What Are Your Outplacement Industry Benchmarks?

When shopping for an outplacement provider, it can be incredibly helpful to understand what your potential provider’s benchmarks are for various industries. Benchmarks help you establish the overall success rate the provider has when helping your departing staff members transition into a new role.

There are three major benchmarks to specifically look out for: landing rate (what percentage of participants go through the program and land a new role), engagement rate (how many of your displaced staff members sign up to continue the outplacement process after the program is presented to them), and satisfaction rate (how happy participants and clients are with their service).

Careerminds’ outplacement service offers until placement, which means that we will never abandon participants midway through their transition. Because of this, our landing rate is incredibly high – nearly 100 percent. Of course, participants may change their minds and decide to halt their job search and stop receiving outplacement for other reasons, too. However, if a participant is still in the job hunt, we work with them every step of the way ensuring they will never go it alone. Typically, our participants land a new role in about 12 weeks on average.

For this reason (and many others), we happily have a 99 percent satisfaction rate. Careerminds is a true partner for all of our clients and participants. We not only help participants find new roles but we also work with HR and managers to understand how to hold reduction events from start to finish, enabling them to keep their employer brand intact while making tough choices.

Finally, Careerminds has an 80 percent or above engagement rate with a typical first engagement happening within 24 hours of receiving the participant list, meaning that we get your staff members quickly onboarded to receive their outplacement support as soon as your organization is ready for us to get to work!

All of this added together leads to a holistic, people-first approach to outplacement that meets the needs of the client and participant no matter what they are.

You can learn more about specific industries here:

Outplacement Innovation: What to Expect in 2021?

The way we work has fundamentally changed in 2020. Virtual jobs are now more of a norm and the practices that were once leaning towards digital have now fully converted, including outplacement and the job search.

In 2021, outplacement will rely more heavily on a strong, tech-driven platform that helps participants further their job search no matter where they are or when they want to dive deeper. Understanding the shifts in the job market and how communication is now almost always handled through video conferencing tools also allows participants to get a leg up on the competition.

All of these technologies will become (if they aren’t already) a standard piece of the outplacement process. However, the backbone of every great outplacement service is dedicated, one-on-one coaching, which pairs participants with a single coach who will be with them every step of the way from start to finish.

Coaching, which has been delivered primarily through virtual means at Careerminds for over a decade, is the bread and butter of a great outplacement experience, especially when they work with participants until they land a new role – never abandoning them midway through.

Looking ahead, outplacement will soon feature machine learning, AI, and other next-gen technologies that are reshaping the way we work and live.

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Josh Hrala

Josh Hrala

Josh is an HR journalist and ghostwriter who's been covering outplacement and offboarding for over six years. Before pivoting to the HR world, he was a science journalist whose work can be found in Popular Science, ScienceAlert, The Huffington Post, Cracked, Modern Notion, and more.

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