In an article published in Harvard Business Review, Harvard Business school executive fellow Claudio Fernández-Aráoz shared some insight on rehiring former employees and how to transition these boomerang hires back into a business. 

Claudio Fernández-Aráoz is known as an author, international speaker, and global authority on talent management and leadership. He has been ranked as one of the most influential executive search consultants in the world, and acts as senior adviser of Egon Zehnder – the world’s largest privately-held executive search firm and the third-largest executive search and talent strategy firm globally.

Alumni programs are redefining employee loyalty, and rehiring former employees is no longer seen as a foreign concept. However, the process of welcoming them back into the fold should tick a few important boxes.

6 Things to Bear in Mind When Rehiring Former Employees

1. Assess The Fit

When you consider a former employee for rehire, it’s very important to check if their skills are suited for the position and if they will fit into the culture as it stands today. The latter could very well have changed a lot since they left the organization, so take care to consider this carefully before offering the position.

2. Do Your Due Diligence (Even if It Seems Impolite)

It’s important to realize that even though someone worked for you before, they need to be as rigorously assessed as other candidates because they are being considered at a different time and in a different context. As such, hiring managers should be careful not to assume too much or invest too much too soon. Rehiring is often a comfortable option, but the proper procedures should still be followed.

3. Support Their Integration

Once you’ve decided to rehire a former employee, support them in their integration in the same way that you would with a fresh hire by providing proper onboarding.

4.Communicate Clearly With The Current Team

Don’t forget to explain to the rest of your team exactly why the candidate in question was chosen for rehire. Explain the process you followed and why they are a good fit for the position in question.

5. Provide A Proper Briefing

Even though they’ve been around the proverbial block, your rehired employee should be properly briefed on the organizational structure, goals, and processes once more. They also need to be provided with clear KPIs – both short and long-term.

6. Keep The Lines of Communication Wide Open

Once your boomerang hire has settled in, it’s important to schedule regular check-ins for mutual feedback sessions. You’ll want to conduct one of these, whether formally or informally, at least once per quarter. This will allow you to see if they are getting along well and if the relationships that need to be forming are doing so.


Follow the guidelines on rehiring former employees as laid out in the HBR article, and you’re setting yourself up for success. Start by checking for cultural fit, doing your due diligence, and supporting their reintegration. Communicate clearly, brief them properly, and keep the lines of communication wide open.