1. Have an open recruitment policy and consider returners alongside other candidates
Study potential returners carefully and assess their application similarly to new candidates. For example, consider how the applicant’s previous experience could benefit your team if you’re recruiting for a new role. You could even seek out candidates who have left the industry and explore how their skills could be transferred to a new position.
2. Look for ways to make it easier for returners to re-enter the workforce
Think about how you can improve onboarding processes and policies so that returning employees feel more welcome and included in their new environment. For example, provide training opportunities, mentor programs, and flexible hours. You could even consider creating roles specifically for returners.
3. Avoid making assumptions about the experiences of returning workers
Don’t assume a boomerang worker cannot catch up on new skills or technologies. Instead, focus on their overall experience and potential rather than any individual gaps in knowledge. For example, allow them to demonstrate their understanding of the industry practically, such as by giving a presentation or leading a project. You could even offer a trial period to evaluate their performance before making a formal offer.
4. Create a supportive environment that values and celebrates the experience of boomerang workers rather than disregarding it as irrelevant
Show your team that you recognize the unique skills of returners and demonstrate how their experience can be used to better the business. For example, encourage returners to share their knowledge and expertise in team meetings or focus groups. You could even consider creating a returning worker program.
By welcoming former employees back, companies can benefit from their increased loyalty and commitment. Boomerang workers tend to be more dedicated to the company than new hires since they are already familiar with the organization—allowing them to hit the ground running and contribute to productivity faster than someone coming in from an outside role.
Furthermore, you can create a more diverse workplace with experienced professionals willing to share their expertise and contribute their skills in a meaningful way.