5 Benefits of Stay Interviews

Top Reasons to Conduct Stay Interviews (Plus Bonus Stay Interview Questions)


Wise business owners are always on the lookout for innovative ways to boost employee retention and provide a work environment that promotes trust, responsibility, and growth. If you’re part of the 27% of companies currently conducting stay interviews, you know they can help businesses achieve these goals. But if you’re not participating in these unique conversations that allow employees to have one-on-one conversations with management about their progress and goals, here are a few benefits of stay interviews to consider.


 1| Minimize turnover costs

An employee earning a salary of $50,000 could potentially cost $10,000 to replace when adding up recruiting and training expenses. Unfortunately, employee turnover is on the rise, increasing from 15.1% in 2013 to just over 18% in 2017.

Minimizing turnover is one of the most important reasons to conduct stay interviews. The Finnegan Institute reported that clients were able to improve retention by up to 70% in the first six months of adding stay interviews to their evaluation processes.


2| Employees expect mentorship

Millennials became the largest generation in the work force in 2016 and with their undeniable presence comes unique expectations. These include more flexible work schedules, faster career progression, and a social work environment.

But one notable expectation is more one-on-one time with superiors. This provides employees with continuous feedback, support, and mentorship. As the Millennial job force grows, the companies meeting their expectations will be more attractive than the ones who aren’t willing to adapt. Stay interviews are sure to be part of the adaptive process.


3| Improved communication from all angles

Improving communication is a common goal in business, no matter the industry or size. But some succeed in meeting this goal better than others.

There are numerous attempts, such as employee satisfaction surveys, suggestion boxes, performance reviews, and team meetings. But stay interviews are the best way to have a low pressure but one-to-one conversation with employees.


4| Build authentic and lasting trust

A successful business is only as strong as its weakest relationship. While many business owners focus on relationships with clients and leads, they also need to focus on and nurture their relationships with their employees.


A work environment built on trusting relationships has a clearer vision, more enthusiasm about the future, and the ability to tackle a crisis head-on. When stay interviews are conducted properly (both parties actively listen, acknowledge emotions, and focus on solutions) building trust is an automatic result.


5| Prevent concerns from becoming full-blown problems

Without performing your team’s day-to-day tasks and not always being directly involved, it can be challenging as a manager to always be in tune with what your team accomplishes. An understanding of a team’s performance may not be as accurate as a manager would hope. Therefore, you may assume protocols are seamless and productivity is at its maximum potential.

But when you get to discuss the aspects of the job one-on-one with those who do it, you’ll become aware of issues you didn’t know existed. Taking a proactive approach and addressing concerns prevents setbacks, boosts productivity, and can even increase revenue.


Stay Interview Questions & Tips

Whether you’ve been conducting stay interviews for several years or want to give them a try, here are a few tips and sample questions to work into your next interview.


  • Schedule them in advance. This shows respect to your employee and allows them to prepare their thoughts.
  • Let employees choose the setting.
  • Be transparent about the goal of the interview.
  • Listen more than you speak during the interview. Pay attention to body language and emotional cues to get the most out of an employee’s response.


Not sure if you’re asking the right stay interview questions? Here are a few of our favorites.

  • Do you have any interests or skills that you feel aren’t properly utilized with your position?
  • Do you feel there is a part of your job performance you aren’t properly recognized for?
  • Is there an area in which you would like more feedback or training?
  • What do you think about on your way to work every morning?
  • What are your career goals?


Let employees answer honestly. Consider every suggestion and don’t make promises you don’t intend to keep. As soon as the stay interview dynamic is damaged, the benefits stop. Remember that a stay interview is the beginning of a discussion, not the final say.

The benefits of stay interviews can have a tremendously positive effect on your business. Take the time to have the conversation. You won’t regret it.


If you do not have an HR partner, Tandem HR is happy to help.
Give us a call today at (630) 928-0510.