Boomerang rehires – The Positive and negatives

Hiring is a delicate process and a decision that can have farther reaching implication than many un-smart employers can perceive. The process of hiring needs deliberation and an institutionalised approach and it is more relevant when it comes to rehiring a past employee, popularly called “boomerang rehires” in the corporate world.

With the advent of modern marketing and recruitment approaches, many past business concepts and dilemmas are no more as relevant today and boomerang rehires is one such taboo that has nearly demolished. More and more corporate giants are resorting to boomerang rehires as compared to just a decade back. The reasons are manifold and the boomerang rehires have their positives and negatives but in my personal opinion, the positives outweigh negatives by a wide margin.

Here is a list of positives and negatives that would help you decide whether it is an option best suited to your particular business environment or otherwise?

The Positives of boomerang rehires

It is important to understand that boomerang rehire is a highly individual phenomenon and its implications are case to case based. It may have different implications where a past employee has left the company at his or her own accord and later decided to rejoin. However, a boomerang rehire of an employee fired or laid off by the company may have different implications. Here is a general list of universal positives of boomerang rehires:

  • Reduced recruitment costs as you don’t have to go through the complete recruitment process from the scratch
  • There is no need to train a boomerang rehire afresh and that reduces the training costs associated with training a fresh employee. However, some refresher training may be required to update the rehired employee. It is obviously lesser expensive and time consuming.
  • A boomerang employee is ought to be well conversant with the business culture and policies and sure to merge well into workplace with minimum down time.
  • Rehired employees have been found to be more loyal to the business upon return to their previous employers.
  • The employers have an understanding of the potentials and weaknesses of a rehired employee and that makes correction application easier.
  • Employers can benefit from rehired employee’s experience of working at another business.
  • As a rule, there is a likelihood that a boomerang rehire would not leave again and that would help in lower failure rates.
  • You business may benefit from PR victory when the news spread that your deserters are joining the ranks again as boomerang rehires.

The Negatives of boomerang rehires

The drawbacks are fewer than the positives of the boomerang rehires. Here are a few:

  • Boomerang hires have a history that they come back with. If the history is pleasant then it is a bonus. If the history is controversial, then you may have to live with it as an employer.
  • Absorbing them in the newly hired team (after they left) might take some time and may result in some friction.
  • You might have to go through some brainstorming to decide about their hierarchy position as some of their juniors might have climbed up the ladder while they were away.