HR Departments Say Employees Are Ghosting Exit Interviews and Stealing Laptops

Capterra research finds that employees are opting out of the offboarding process entirely and businesses are suffering culturally and financially as a result

ARLINGTON, Va.--()--As companies ramp up layoff efforts to cut costs, a new survey finds major holes in company offboarding processes, leading to ghosted exit interviews and stolen company equipment. According to Capterra’s Employee Offboarding Survey, which collected responses from nearly 300 HR workers who manage offboarding for their employer, this lax attitude toward offboarding comes at a considerable cost.

Among HR workers who offboarded employees in the past year, 70% say multiple employees skipped their exit interviews. This is a big problem, as HR departments should use exit interviews to identify and then address employee pain points to boost team morale and improve retention. To increase exit interview participation, companies can use online surveys instead of in-person or virtual meetings to keep findings anonymous and honest.

Nearly three-fourths of these HR workers (71%) also say at least one employee didn’t return company-owned equipment, like a laptop or smartphone. Hybrid and remote employees were 17% more likely to not return company-owned equipment vs. on-site employees. Over half (61%) of HR workers who reported stolen company equipment say their employer threatened criminal or legal action.

“Capterra’s results indicate that HR departments aren’t taking offboarding as seriously as they should,” says Brian Westfall, principal HR analyst at Capterra. “Ghosted exit interviews are a big missed opportunity to gain valuable feedback on the employee experience, and stolen laptops and smartphones can lead to major consequences if confidential data ends up in the wrong hands.”

Effective offboarding needs to take cybersecurity into consideration. Stolen equipment contains sensitive information that not all companies are equipped to protect. Of the 59% of HR workers who say stolen company-owned equipment contained sensitive information, only 55% were able to completely lock out the employee from using the equipment. It’s estimated that each employee who stole equipment walked away with $1,963 of equipment, on average.

The full report expands on the findings, offering recommendations for increasing exit interview participation and preventing ex-employees from taking sensitive company data.

About Capterra

Capterra is the leading software reviews and selection platform that connects businesses to the right technology. Compare software, read and leave reviews, and access objective insights that empower business growth. For more information, visit


Evan Mimms

Release Summary

As companies ramp up layoff efforts to cut costs, a new survey finds major holes in company offboarding processes.


Evan Mimms