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Exit Interviews and Checkout Procedure

Section 100, Proc. 125
Related Policy: HR0125
Related Forms: Authorization for Release of Final Paycheck, IRIS Termination Action, Exit Interview Questionnaire
Effective: 2/21/08


The exit interview program is designed to collect climate and other qualitative information from exiting employees to identify work environment issues that contribute to both retention and turnover; to provide exiting employees an opportunity to voice concerns and make suggestions, and to ensure the retrieval of university assets when an employee separates from employment. Data from exit interviews may be used to help improve human resource practices, e.g. recruiting, orientation, performance management, training, working conditions, and the like. The process includes a check-out procedure authorizing the release of the final paycheck for regular staff exempt and staff non-exempt employees and a checkout procedure for regular employees who change to temporary status.

Who is affected:

All regular employees, including faculty, who are voluntarily terminating their employment with the university may schedule an exit interview.


1. Exit Interview

The employee is encouraged to schedule an exit interview directly with the Knoxville area Human Resources-Employee Relations department. Departments, colleges or institutes may also have their own additional exit process in place.

2. Release of Final Paycheck

The Authorization for Release of Final Paycheck form must be completed by all regular exempt and non-exempt employees. Debts owed by an employee to the departments on the form must be settled prior to reporting, with the completed form, to Human Resources-Employee Relations. At this time, the employee’s identification card will also be collected. Any unpaid amounts may be deducted from the employee’s final paycheck, or the final paycheck may be withheld until debts are cleared. Employees leaving regular status should, in any case, consult with Benefits and Retirement to inquire about possible retirement distribution matters.

3. Departments Located Outside Knoxville

Exit procedures should be followed as detailed herein above, and the “Authorization for Release of Final Paycheck” should be sent, along with the employee’s identification card, to Human Resources-Employee Relations.

4. Change to Student or Term Status

When a regular exempt or non-exempt employee changes to a student or term employee status, the exit procedure outlined above must be followed. Unused annual leave will be paid in a lump sum at this time. To pay unused annual leave, the e-form terminating the individual is initiated by the department and must indicate the unused annual leave hours to be paid.  The person must be re-hired into the new status position.

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