Stay Interview: All You Need to Know

By hrlineup | 14.04.2022

Every day, employers experience employee turnover for one reason or the other. This has left many wondering what could be the cause of this turnover and what they could do to minimize it. A stay interview is one of the most effective ways that has helped employers improve retention. The last thing you want is to invest in your employees, only to lose them when they have become the best contributors to increasing your business productivity. So, what is a stay interview, and why is it important to businesses? Do stay interviews improve retention? Read along for everything you need to know.

What is a Stay Interview?

A stay interview is a meeting between an HR manager and an employee to know what keeps employees working in your organization. Employers also want to learn what challenges employees go through during the interview and listen to their opinions regarding what could be done to minimize those challenges. You will ask the employees various questions and learn where your business excels and falls short from their answers. Simply put, stay interview programs help you improve employee engagement and satisfaction.

What is the Purpose of Conducting a Stay Interview?

As mentioned earlier, stay interviews help you identify situations within the organizations that contribute to employee turnover. With this stay interview engagement strategy, it is easier for employers to retain the best talent and maximize productivity. Note that there are other benefits of stay interviews and knowing them enables you to fully understand why you need to implement them and take your business to another level. Take a look below.

  • Valuable Feedback

Stay interviews help you get valuable feedback from your employees before your business experiences adverse effects. You see, many employers will assume that they have set a favorable working environment for their workers, but the reality is that the workers have a lot to share. So be open with communication and develop stay interview questions to help you understand where you fall short. As a result, it will be easier for you to fix the problems before they affect your business’s bottom line. 

  • Improve Employee Engagement

An engaged workforce is a satisfied and happy one. Therefore, start by ensuring your workers are happy and satisfied. This can only be done by understanding their challenges in the workplace and being open to taking the necessary steps to fix them. So, ask them the essential stay interview questions and give them a platform to be open and honest. In addition, you need to create a healthy working relationship with your workers and be someone they can approach with concerns or questions. 

How to Conduct a Stay Interview

Managing a stay interview process is easy if you fully understand how to do it. Below, we list some practical aspects of how stay interviews work, including what to say in a stay interview and answering the commonly asked question, “when should you do a stay interview?”

1. Start slowly:

It is understandable that some employers manage many employees, and conducting stay interviews with each of them can be challenging. Therefore, start with the best performers as you do not want to risk losing them. 

2. Make the activity regular:

It is essential that you stay abreast with where your employees stand regarding their comfort within the organization. Therefore, conduct stay interviews as often as you can to know areas within your business that require immediate attention. 

3. Have a proper stay interview schedule:

Stay interviews should never be conducted on recently hired employees as they are still getting familiar with how the business works. Instead, do it on workers who are already settled and consider making it a separate activity. Also, make the interview process as short as possible to gather enough feedback and act on it before affecting your business’s bottom line.  

4. Have Well-Structured Stay Interview Questions:

Do not go into stay interviews without preparing for them. Ensure you follow the same structure for each employee using a detailed template. 

5. Choose the best leader for the stay interview process:

It is the responsibility of the HR professional to conduct stay interviews. However, are they fully prepared to handle the activity? While they should be competent enough to do so, ensure you offer additional training for more effectiveness. 

6. Implement positive changes:

While conducting stay interviews, gather all the answers and pay attention to patterns and trends. You will then use your finding to implement positive changes and ensure every business sector is strengthened for more engagement and performance.  

Examples of Stay Interview Questions

If you are new to stay interviews, you probably must be asking what stay interview questions are. Below are some examples of stay interview questions to ask and get the right feedback. 

  1. What do you look forward to being part of this organization?
  2. What drives you to work here?
  3. What is the best way to handle employee recognition?
  4. Is there any way we can support you better in your business tasks?
  5. What would make you want to leave our company?
  6. Do you feel satisfied in your current position? If not, why?

Remember to always keep stay interviews short and straight to the point. You can take approximately 30 minutes to one hour to interview a candidate and take notes of their concerns. With time, you will be able to identify the most critical questions that help you get proper feedback.


Employers need to prioritize their employees’ engagement and satisfaction. Developing solid strategies to handle your workers will help you improve retention and maximize productivity. One of the best strategies to keep your workers is conducting stay interviews. This enables you to understand what drives them to keep working and identify areas that require improvement. All in all, stay interviews help in creating healthy business relationships and boosts morale. It is definitely worth conducting.