As an HR professional, it’s your responsibility to not only create impactful engagement and employee retention strategies, but to also enable the leaders at your company to execute them effectively. With remote work adding an extra layer of complexity to the manager:employee relationship, having a playbook that allows them to gauge employee frustrations and boost engagement will go a long way. 

A great way to start measuring employee engagement and satisfaction is the Stay Interview. In this guide, we’ll define the stay interview, and show you everything you’ll need to get your managers and team leaders ready to start. With an effective stay interview process, managers will be on their way to creating team cultures which all will want to be a part of. 

What is a Stay Interview?

Stay interviews are a proven tactic that organizations use to gauge why their employees come to work every day. They are informal conversations between a manager and employee designed to gather valuable feedback about their role and the parts of your company that they enjoy. Additionally, these interviews can give some insight on what might make a great employee move on from their role, and are great exercises to establish trust between managers and their teams.

Why Stay Interviews? 

Stay interviews improve employee retention by identifying pain points and recurring problems before they become major issues. When incorporating stay interviews into other employee engagement efforts like pulse surveys, recognition programs, and training, your team will quickly become a destination that attracts new talent and beats turnover. It should be a part of everyone’s employee retention policy.

When Should You Conduct Stay Interviews? 

They should be conducted at least once a year between a manager and their employee and should never be a part of the performance review cycle. Answers to stay interview questions should be candid, and employees should not worry if their answers will affect their performance review results. 

If your managers have regular one-on-one meetings with employees, that can be a great time to conduct a stay interview. However, your managers should set expectations for this conversation and share why it is occurring and the positive impact that it is intended to have. 

All in all, these conversations should be 30 minutes or less and take place in a comfortable setting for both your managers and their employees. 

Stay Interview Implementation Best Practices

Here are a few tips and considerations for getting started: 

Questions to get you started


The Great Resignation is upon us, and it is more important than ever to put your employees first. Stay Interviews are valuable and easy to implement exercises that give incredible insight into the day to day experiences of your employees. With the information gathered, you can work with your managers to identify areas for growth and prioritize your efforts to make the biggest impact on employee retention and beat that employee turnover rate benchmark. 

Having an all-in-one employee engagement, performance, and workplace connectivity tool can help you implement stay interviews and take action on your findings. Get started today with HelloTeam. 

To learn more about the steps of employee retention, check out our article, How to Retain Employees in 2022! We have a lot more on the subject as well – take a look at our Employee Retention Strategies PDF, or our 10 HR Strategies For the Retention Crisis piece, as told by experts from many of the industries we discussed above. All of our resources can be found in our Library – check them out here! To see HelloTeam, the employee retention platform, in action, click here — and to set up a meeting with us, go here!

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