Effective Handover/Transition and Prevention of Theft

6/2/2020, By Sze-Yen Chee

Dear Yen,  

In an exit exercise, how do you ensure effective handover /transition and prevent theft? 



Dear Caden,  

I believe that the Company should trust its people to do the right thing.  

If you have done your part to ensure that the employees were adequately supported, and fairly compensated, there will be enough goodwill to ensure a smooth transition. The exiting staff do really care about the ones remaining and will more than likely do what they can to support the handover. The people I’ve supported in Exit, have often lamented having to return to the office or work just as hard despite being notified that they have no more jobs. They feel a level of obligation to their team members and bosses, and this reflects their high level of integrity and responsibility.  

Depending on your organization and the individual’s role, you may want to express in the Exit agreement that the Exiting individual is obligated to complete handover and ensure a proper sign-off from the relevant authorities in order to qualify for severance.  While this may reflect a lack of trust, it would be helpful to get everything in writing to protect the Company’s interests.  

People are inherently good and will not steal, and are unlikely to have malicious intentions.  If they are caught stealing, the damage to their professional reputation could be irrecoverable.  

Just in case, you may decide to add a “professional discretion” clause, preventing the individual from expressing derogatory comments.  

The theft of information is easy to track. Do work closely with your IT department to cut off all technology access. If the person is in a sensitive role, do discreetly escort him off the premises (if you are back in the office). Offer the person the flexibility of returning on a weekend to collect his personal belongings.  

Good luck! 

Best Regards