Involuntary Termination Firing Guide & Procedures for Managers

Involuntary Termination Firing Guide & Procedures for Managers

Conduct the meeting with confidence

Process Guide for Managers - Involuntary Terminations

This Involuntary Termination and Firing Guide for Managers provides your managers with a step-by-step process and procedures for preparing and conducting an involuntary termination and firing an employee.

Preview & Download it

BONUS:  Plus get 5 of our most popular documents


Involuntary termination or firing an employee is a difficult and stressful experience for everyone involved—HR, the manager, the employee, people the employee works with, and even others in the organization.  The process and procedures around involuntary terminations or firing are usually somewhat of a mystery, and when it happens, people fear they will be next.  Fortunately, involuntary terminations or firing employees doesn't happen very often, but when they do, it’s critical that managers follow the right process. 

Companies usually monitor and evaluate performance at various stages of employment: 

  • New employees or regular status employees in new positions go through a probationary period
  • Regular status employees participate in an annual performance review
  • Employees who are not meeting performance expectations undergo a performance improvement plan with their manager
  • Employees who still don’t meet performance expectations after the performance improvement plan are subject to involuntary termination or firing by the manager

What the Guide Includes

The Procedures Guide for Managers - How to Fire an Employee & Conduct an Involuntary Terminations includes the following sections:

Step 1.     Make a Decision

The manager and HR determine the feasibility  of firing the manager's employee

Step 2.     HR and Manager Create a Plan

The manager and HR create a plan that includes date time and place for terminating the manager's employee

Step 3.     HR Notifies Payroll

Step 4.     HR Prepares Termination Documents

Step 5.     Manager Prepares for Termination Meeting

The manager insures that logistics surrounding the termination meeting are taken care of

Step 6.     Manager Conducts Involuntary Termination Meeting

  • Tips for the Manager
  • Tips for the HR Representative

Step 7.     Manager announces the Employee’s Departure

Step 8.     Follow-up

Bottom line, involuntary termination or firing an employee based on poor performance should never be a surprise to the employee when the news is delivered by the manager.  However, there are other circumstances under which involuntary termination and firing an employee may be necessary.  This manager guide describes these circumstances, and provides managers with step-by-step guidance on how to prepare for and conduct an involuntary termination and fire an employee.  It answers questions like:

  • What happens if an employee does not successfully complete a Performance Improvement Plan and the decision is made to terminate employment?
  • What’s the process for involuntary terminations when no Performance Improvement Plan has been completed?
  • As a manager, what’s my role in the involuntary termination process and when I fire one of my employees?  Who does what?

Why use a "Procedures Guide for Managers - How to Fire an Employee & Conduct an Involuntary Terminations"

  • There's a right way and a wrong way to conduct an involuntary termination. Having a documented process in a manager guide makes sure your managers fire employees the right way.
  • To support and guide HR and managers through the difficult and sensitive process of involuntarily terminating or firing an employee with termination procedures 
  • Teach a manager how to conduct an involuntary termination and make sure important steps aren't missed when firing an employee

What you risk by not using a Manager's Termination Guide

  • Decisions are made in the heat of a moment without proper preparation, leaving your company unprepared for the consequences
  • Your company is exposed to risks associated with non-compliance to employment legislation
  • Making expensive involuntary termination mistakes when you fire an employee without proper procedures

Related Articles

Can I preview it?

You bet.  Click on the blue text link(s) below

Procedures Guide for Managers - How to Fire an Employee & Conduct an Involuntary Terminations

Plus get 5 of our most popular documents

Which HR kit is it included in?

This Process Guide for Managers is used with the Involuntary Terminations Kit, which is one of 4 ConnectsUs Performance Management Kits.


Click image to view full size



Click image to view full size
Position Justification Example

So much more than just templates

ConnectsUs  for

Create noticeably better HR
for your Small Business

ConnectsUs  for

Quick-start your
HR Consulting Practice


Plus get 5 of our most popular documents