How to Make an HR Firing and Termination Document in MS Word
In America, a huge percentage of workers are categorized as “at-will employees.” This means that they can be fired for any reason at all, as long as it’s not within the legal grounds of discrimination in gender, race, and sexual orientation or against any employee or union contract. Technically, a termination notice is not required of the employer and the management. Why do the majority of companies do so? According to The Balance Careers, a termination letter is important to show compassion, uphold a tradition, shield a company from a possible lawsuit, and, most importantly, present a positive brand image to the public.
1. Know What to Include
Creating a termination letter can be nerve-wracking, especially if you have to be the one to deliver the news. Telling someone that they’re no longer part of the company can sound cruel, even in writing. To get you started, identify what necessary information should be included in your document. These include employee details, the reason for termination, instructions of property return, and details on severance pay and other benefits. This kick-starts your copy with an outline that you can easily fill in. For a more detailed picture, look up sample termination letters for reference on the overall format.
2. Communicate with a Clear Reason
The very first sentence of your termination notice should directly state the intention of laying off an individual from the service. Putting a long introduction to the letter will only prolong the inevitable and will not, in any way, benefit the employee. Follow up with the reasons why the dismissal has to happen or why the contract has to be nullified. Avoid vague and unclear statements and lay down the matter in a clear and comprehensible manner.
3. Specify Violations
If the termination is due to a policy violation or poor performance in the workplace, cite specific rule clauses that were breached or defied. Before you send the document to the party involved, take the initiative to do a background investigation, and gather evidence to support your claims. This is to protect the company against a lawsuit, should the severed employee decide to press for charges. Whether it’s absenteeism, excessive tardiness, fraud, or other violations that the company manual deems wrongful, it should be backed by the rule.
4. Use Professional Language
Employ a professional, unbiased, and direct tone throughout the entire letter. Dismiss any attempt of being emotional when your company needs to downsize or being stern and unforgiving when an employee commits grave misconduct. It’s not going to elicit a positive response, nor is it going to reverse an unfortunate incident. Express your regret, but avoid dwelling on it too much. Your document should only present necessary and factual details.
5. Emphasize Legal Agreements
Your employee has most likely signed a confidentiality agreement or a non-competition agreement upon his or her admission to the company. Use this opportunity to remind them about the said clause in the employment contract. This will help them avoid possible charges on their future endeavors. If you’re ending on pleasant terms, you may also offer them your recommendation to help them find a good opportunity.