Understanding The Stages of Employee Lifecycle and How to Enhance Them

MX Bites / October 13, 2023

The employee lifecycle could begin long before an employee’s first day at work and extend longer than the day of exit from the organization. It includes all the moments in which an employee gives importance and priority to an organization by engaging with it.

Every stage of the employee lifecycle must be improved for your company to provide a flawless employee experience.  This improvement will continue to seem bogus if the employee lifecycle, at every stage, is not measured using specific KPIs and improved in response to it.

While there may be a plethora of stages in the employee lifecycle, they have been grouped into seven stages, which will be elaborated on in the remainder of this article. Before moving on, let’s get a clear picture of what the employee lifecycle looks like.


What is the employee lifecycle?

The employee lifecycle refers to an organizational structure used to describe the period of engagement an employee has with an organization. 

Also known as the employee journey or the employee experience, the employee lifecycle refers to the stages and experiences that an employee goes through while working for a company. It starts from the initial contact with the company through recruitment and onboarding to the eventual exit from the organization. In some cases, it even lasts longer than the day of exiting the organization.

It is a method of comprehending and managing an employee’s multiple touchpoints and engagement with a company throughout their period of employment. It sums up the time they spend engaging the company. 


Why the employee lifecycle matters

Now that you’ve understood the concept of the employee lifecycle, you may also want to know why you should care about it and how it might affect your organization. 

Each stage of the lifecycle enables you to measure and assess the insights, impacts, issues, opportunities, and innovations that are peculiar to your employees. The employee lifecycle helps you have a broader view of your employee experience, measure it, and give you insight on how to improve it.

When you begin to give as much importance to your employee’s lifecycle as you give your customers journey, you are able to:

  • Retain your top talents
  • See clearly how best to train your employees
  • Reduce employee turnover
  • Improve your brand recognition and reputation, etc.


The 7 Stages of The Employee Lifecycle

The following elaborates on the stages of the employee lifecycle, as mentioned above.

   1. Brand Attraction

As much as people have dream jobs, they also have dream companies. The point at which they became attracted to the company is where their lifecycle begins. For some people, their point of attraction was their first use of the company’s product, while others had theirs by interacting with the company as a customer or with their staff. Whichever way it comes, we believe the employee lifecycle should start from this point of attraction. This suggests that companies should build brands that align with their goals and utilize brand tracking metrics to measure brand equity.

   2. Recruitment

This includes all the processes involved in hiring the most qualified candidate for a role. It starts with the company website and ads created for the job opening, which must also align with your company’s goals and values. To attract the best candidates, the employer value proposition (EVP) must be well presented. 

Strategies put in place for the recruitment process can be measured through social media listening on job sites or putting out a pre-hiring survey to understand the perspective of employees about the brand before they were employed.

   3. Onboarding

This covers all the processes involved in engrafting a new hire into the workplace system. Usually, the first day at work comprises all the training processes the employee needs to get going. The onboarding process should be well-encompassing, enough to give the employee good standing in the organization. More importantly, new hires should be given clear role expectations to reduce tension at work. 

This stage can be measured using surveys, asking new hires for feedback, and making improvements based on their responses.

   4. Training and development

Every employee desires to get better at their jobs. A profound way to increase employee satisfaction is to introduce platforms, especially external ones, that help their professional journey and help them make independent decisions in their career. This stage of employee lifecycle can be measured using the training feedback, promotion rates, productivity rates, etc.

  5. Retention

At this stage, your employees have been fully engrafted into the organization, and you know their strengths and abilities. Now, your focus here is to retain your top talents by discovering and meeting their expectations. It’s very expensive to lose your top talents, and it’s equally expensive to begin a new hiring process and train new employees to fit into the system. Therefore, efforts must be made to retain top employees. To measure this stage, watch the turnover rates of employees, use surveys to make inquiries about their reasons for leaving your organization, and develop measures on how to improve employee retention.

   6. Separation

No employee is a permanent staff member. This means they are likely to live at any point in time, whether on their own or because of the company’s decision to lay them off. Employees could leave for many reasons, including retirement, new offers and positions, lack of satisfaction in the workplace, etc. Whichever one it is, we would advise you to conduct an exit interview on why your employees chose to leave and make positive moves in response to their feedback.

   7. Advocacy

As mentioned earlier, the employee lifecycle extends beyond their last day at work. This is valid because employees still speak about your organization even after leaving, and to make sure their comments are positive, make sure their departure is peaceful and not out of conflict. Help them understand their meaningful impact on the organization and how greatly their presence will be missed. You can keep their contact information and keep sending them opportunities for new employment roles and files that can help their career.

Employees with good exit experiences are three times more likely to recommend the organization to other top talents and possibly people who would be willing to be long-term customers of the organization.


Every stage of the employee lifecycle is important. They should be carefully managed and improved, as they all contribute to your brand reputation and success. Also, the stages of this lifecycle enable you to have a closer look at your employee experience to improve it and make all your employees, both past and present, become your brand ambassadors. It also solves employee attrition and improves the overall retention rate.

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