Warm Farewell for the Win: How We Create a Positive Offboarding Experience at Runtastic

Finding and binding great talent (and more importantly lovely humans) is the key goal of Runtastic’s Human Relations team and we pride ourselves on the great effort we make to keep Runtastic(s) happy. Still, we must admit that sometimes we can do better, since we also have to watch people move on to other roles, other countries, other projects.

When Runtastics move on

As most companies know, the current labor market situation is tough for employers. Competition is fierce, and highly skilled people are being contacted by headhunters all the time.

As a result, we experience people moving on to what may be more promising opportunities for them. It would be easy for us to say that we simply can’t compete with Facebook or Spotify, but this would not only be false, it would also keep us from striving to improve.

For this reason, we invest a lot of time and effort into training our leaders to learn how to develop their team and support Runtastics through internal hiring processes. Besides the bi-annual feedback talks, we recommend weekly one-on-ones and identify areas that need attention in our quarterly engagement survey throughout the company to avoid job dissatisfaction.

We are convinced that building trust between team lead and team members is key to a long-lasting relationship. However, if team members feel misunderstood by their direct lead, they can also skip a level or talk to HR. 

Letting go can be hard

Strong relationships are also essential when Runtastics struggle to live up to the expectations of their position. When we notice issues, we initiate additional face-to-face meetings in a trusting environment in order to specifically address concerns about performance or behavior. Most of the time, these talks wind up with people pointing out what they need for their development, shifting tasks around within the team, or simply realizing that they can do better.

But sometimes it unfortunately takes a tougher conversation, in which the team lead explicitly points out the last chance before we feel like it becomes necessary to part ways. When we can’t avoid the latter, we ensure a respectful good-bye and also take away important lessons learned.

Never stop learning, never stop improving

Regardless of the reason why people leave, every employee has the chance to give feedback during a management farewell. In this conversation everybody can personally say good-bye to our Managing Directors and also point out suggestions for improvement to the highest level of management. They appreciate constructive criticism (and positive feedback), and also consider it important to take the time to say thank you on a very personal note.

In addition to the management farewell, we also hold exit talks with one of our HR team members for everyone who decides to leave. During this 60 to 90 minute private session, Runtastics get to reflect on their time with the company, which we evaluate and derive actions from accordingly. 

Sometimes it’s not a good-bye, but a see you later

Most of the time, leaving your company is not an easy decision, and we are convinced that people thoroughly consider their options before moving on. Thanks to our positive farewells, we stay in touch with our former colleagues, follow their careers, and are proud if they get to celebrate successes in their new roles in other companies or if their own projects and businesses begin to flourish.

At Runtastic, we embrace flexibility and constant change, which is why we wouldn’t hold a grudge against people’s development outside of Runtastic — even if we wished they’d developed within the company. Through our strong personal bonds and community-based product features, we keep in touch, invite some of our closest team members to major company events, collaborate with them in their personal projects, and even sometimes welcome them back if they realize that Runtastic is actually the place they are happiest to work.


HR Team Human Relations strives to continuously strengthen the Runtastic team. On the blog, they share insights into the international work environment. View all posts by HR Team