The Pros and Cons of Hiring an Employee Who Left the Company

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It’s not an uncommon scenario: An employee leaves the company, only to reapply years later when a relevant position opens. And it’s a situation that gives many hiring managers pause. Should you consider rehiring a former employee who quit?

Here are the pros and cons of rehiring an employee who once left the company:

Pros: Why You Should Rehire

  • Familiarity with the company’s goals and culture. A former employee may need less time to “learn the ropes” and settle in to the role.
  • An understanding of the team structure. A former employee who applies for a role related to the one they left already knows how those roles interrelate – as well as how other roles work together. They are thus better equipped to provide insight into potential challenges and opportunities.
  • A commitment to change. An employee who can articulate clearly why they left and what they want to change upon their return may prove to be a strong motivating force on the team. The employee understands what success looks like and they’re willing to work to get it.

One way to know whether you’re getting a “pro” candidate is to talk to your recruiter. Your staffing partner can look for signs the candidate is coming in with a full understanding of recent changes and a commitment to avoiding the situation that led to their leaving the company the first time.

Cons: Why You May Think Twice About Rehiring

  • A gap between leaving and re-applying that is too short. In some cases, this might indicate a change of heart. It might also imply, however, the candidate doesn’t know what they want or thinks they can abandon the team on short notice.
  • Poor past performance or fit. An employee who leaves due to poor cultural fit is unlikely to have turned into a different person in the meantime. Consider carefully whether fit played a role in the original separation and whether the candidate will fit well into the current team.
  • The blame game. Some former employees may have a clear idea of what they can do to improve the situation that originally caused their departure. Others may still be blaming everyone but themselves. The interview process, or your recruiter, can help you determine which is which.

Here, too, your recruiting partner can play a key role in understanding your concerns and screening each candidate for potential red flags.

At Solopoint Solutions, our recruiters can help you connect with some of the best available engineering talent. Contact us today to learn more about our engineering recruitment services in California.

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