Resigning Policies

Just heard about what happens to employees in the financial industry when they notify the HR department of their intent to quit. It’s actually pretty ridiculous. But then again, I have only worked for 4 organizations thus far and they were just internships and part-time jobs so I don’t really know how it goes for other industries.

My friend decided to resign from her company because she was going to move abroad with her fiancé who was relocating. So she called up her boss on the phone to inform the boss of her decision. Now, the boss did give her a warning about what was about to happen if she decided to resign but with her implicit communication, my friend misinterpreted the message. The boss said, “Are you absolutely sure? Well, you know all our phone conversations are recorded anyway, so if you are sure you want to resign, I’ll have to call the HR department and they will deal with the situation immediately.”

What my friend thought the boss meant was that the HR people will come give her paperwork to sign right away, which would be a good thing so she can get it all over with a month ahead of time.

But my friend wasn’t prepared for what happened next. A few minutes after she hung up from her boss, some HR people came and asked her to sign some papers, told her to log-off her computer, pack up her stuff, and escorted her out of the building right away without letting her say bye to any of her colleagues!

So, my friend was very confused about this procedure (she’s resigned from other companies before and this has never happened to her) but turns out when she discussed this with others in the financial industry, they said that it’s the norm.

What I wonder about is two things. The first is why show such low trust in the employee once they decide to resign? Don’t employees have to sign some kind of contract when they are first employed with the company that says something like “You are not allowed to share information from our company up to at least one year after you resign”? I was an external consultant for a small project and even I had to sign a form like that! The way the company treated my friend was as if they never trusted her all along. Also, my friend was more confused than mad…it’s like if you’re in a good relationship and one day your boyfriend, out of nowhere, breaks up with you and escorts you out of his apartment; there’s more confusion than anger or sadness.

Procedural justice has been breached for sure. But the HR department was at least good at using interactional justice to alleviate the situation. My friend said, “Well, at least the HR people were nice about it,” to which I replied, “Of course they were nice to you. They know what they’re doing to you is a jerk thing to do so they have to be nice.”

The other thing I wonder about is, why would a company do something like this because now employees would go bad mouth them and give them a bad reputation? At least I now view that company badly in terms of how they treat their employees.

I think there are better ways for companies to deal with honest employees who are resigning for an honest reason who are giving the company a heads-up about their decision.

Has this ever happened to anyone else?


1 Comment

Filed under Organizations

One response to “Resigning Policies

  1. Julie

    That’s crazy. Never heard of it.

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