Why You Might NOT Want to Bring Back a Boomerang Employee

In a previous post, we talked about the pros of hiring boomerang employees, or employees who leave an organization and later return.boomerangA recent Accountemps survey found that 9 in 10 senior managers report being open to hiring a boomerang employee, and many pros include benefits to the organization and its management.

However, only 53% of employees said they would apply for a position with a former employer, according to the same survey, and many of the cons have to do with relations with other employees.

Not a Good Fit

One of the pros we previously mentioned was that boomerang employees already know the company culture, but the flip side of this is that they left that culture, which may indicate that they are not a good fit for the company. Therefore, bringing these employees back may end up being counterproductive for the organization.

Not a Valuable Employee

A boomerang employee typically is one who left voluntarily. Few companies would rehire someone they terminated, but employees who left voluntarily are probably not the most valuable if the employer didn’t make an effort to retain them. So, think carefully about both the positives and the negatives of rehiring a former employee.

Bouncing Around

Boomerang employees are reputed to bounce from one company to another and, therefore, have the potential to leave an organization again after a short time, which can be expensive in terms of actual costs and in terms of morale.

Issues with Other Employees

Boomerang employees may have left an organization because of issues with colleagues, and their return could bring down the morale within the company, as well as stir up hard feelings from whoever was hired in their place.

Unresolved Issues

Boomerang employees ultimately chose to leave your organization, most likely due to unresolved issues. There may have been a phenomenal opportunity that lured them away, but unless changes were implemented to address the issues or are implemented upon an employee’s return, problems will remain that may cause more conflict.

There will always be pros and cons of most situations in the business world, but the challenge is managing them and turning a negative into a positive. In our next post on this subject, we’ll talk about some best practices for hiring boomerang employees.

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