The Risks of Incomplete Employee Offboarding

Risks of incomplete employee offboarding

When employees leave, the offboarding process can be stressful. Depending on the amount of notice given and the circumstances under which they leave, there is usually a lot that needs to be done. It’s easy for things to slip through the cracks with everything else going on, and it can be a stressful process. Ensuring sensitive data is safe, removing their access to files and information, there is definitely a lot going on.

One of the things that gets missed too easily during the offboarding process is removing access to operational elements such as credit cards and payment monitoring. What tends to happen is that because there is little oversight into what kind of access employees have and what they might have set up, recurring payments and credit card fraud remain a risk.

A lack of visibility around employee spend, and payments can make the offboarding process that much difficult after employees leave. For example:

  • Recurring subscriptions might continue to get charged that no one else besides the departing employee is aware of
  • There could be payments where the company credit card has been added to accounts and cannot be canceled. Companies end up having to ask former employees to remove card information, which can get tricky.
  • Former employees may still have the company credit card information.
  • Payments continue to pile up, but there is little understanding of billing schedules and invoices that could help track the missing money.

This generally remains hidden until it’s time for financial reconciliations, and the process reveals unexplained revenue loss. While finance departments can manage some of these issues with simple cancelations, the process isn’t always straightforward. 

Companies are often forced to cancel the entire card sometimes, leading to business downtime as the cards are reestablished. Similarly, switching billing and payment methods becomes necessary if the credit card in question needs to be abandoned since the former employee may still have access to it. 

It’s a domino effect that leads to a lot of inconvenience and lack of trust in the overall payments being made. And because there is so much disruption to payment methods, companies and current employees have to face the brunt of that inconvenience.

Protecting sensitive information during offboarding

So how do you go about making the employee offboarding process as painless as possible in this context? One suggestion might be to make payments and credit card access a key part of the offboarding checklist. Once employees hand in their notice and resignation date, sit with them to understand:

  • what kinds of payments and charges they were responsible for 
  • When are vital bills and invoices coming in? 
  • How is that generally managed, and who else can take on the responsibility for this?
  • What credit cards do they have access to?

This will help mitigate some of the offboarding issues that could arise. However, this by no means foolproof. Once you have all the answers to these questions, there is still a lot of work that needs to be done to revoke access and switch billing methods. The disruption is contained, but it is not entirely avoided, so it’s not the best solution. 

The best way to avoid this is to implement a spend management solution that eradicates the disruption and gain complete visibility on subscription payments and company spend.

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