What is

Boomerang Employee


A boomerang employee leaves a job post but returns to the company at a later date. Boomerang employees represent important opportunities for companies.

In today's dynamic and competitive job market, it's not uncommon for employees to move from one company to another. They may change employers in search of new opportunities, growth, or a change in their career path. 

One trend that’s currently on the rise is the concept of a boomerang employee. These are staff members who leave an organization but eventually return to take on a new position. 

Boomerang employees represent important opportunities for companies. They bring valuable experience and fresh perspectives while reducing the amount of time and effort HR needs to spend on onboarding. 

What Is a Boomerang Employee?

A boomerang employee is an individual who voluntarily leaves their job with a company and later returns to work for the same organization. This unique phenomenon challenges the traditional notion that an employee's departure is a permanent one-way journey. 

Boomerang employees may depart the organization for a variety of reasons. They might be looking for new challenges or pursuing further education. They may also look into new opportunities or advance their career path with other organizations. Ultimately, they come back to the company, typically to take on a new role. 

Reasons Employees Leave in the First Place  

There are several reasons why an employee may leave an organization. In the case of a boomerang employee, it’s usually to pursue career advancement. Sometimes, there may be no room for growth or they want to learn new skills elsewhere. Often, employees seek a better balance and a more comfortable lifestyle. 

Personal Growth and Development
Boomerang employees often leave to acquire new skills, knowledge, or experiences that can enhance their professional growth. By venturing outside the organization, they gain fresh insights and valuable perspectives. They can later apply these to their previous workplace.

Improved Work-Life Balance
Some employees leave an organization in search of a better work-life balance. Maybe they live too far away and the commute proves too long. Or, other companies might offer remote work opportunities. Some take a sabbatical and pursue personal hobbies and interests. 

With changes in company structures or leadership, these professionals may be enticed to return to their former employer. 

Career Advancement
Boomerang employees may leave their current position in pursuit of career advancement opportunities. They might explore roles in other companies that offer greater responsibility, higher positions, or better compensation. 

They may also pursue higher education or certifications that require their full attention. Upon receiving their degree, boomerang employees may choose to return to their former employer in a new, higher position. 

Benefits of Hiring Boomerang Employees 

The boomerang employee phenomenon is transforming the employment landscape, challenging traditional notions of employee loyalty and departure. By recognizing the value of individuals who choose to return, organizations are able to tap into a pool of experienced professionals. 

On top of existing experience with the company, these individuals bring fresh perspectives, expanded skill sets, and a demonstrated commitment to the company's success.

Familiarity and Cultural Fit
Boomerang employees possess an inherent understanding of the organization's culture, values, and processes. Their previous experience enables them to quickly reintegrate into the company, bypassing the need for extensive onboarding or training. 

Expanded Skill Set
Boomerang employees bring back a wealth of new skills and knowledge acquired during their time away. Their experiences from different organizations or industries can inject fresh perspectives and innovative ideas into existing projects or teams. 

This diversity of thought and experience can contribute to enhanced problem-solving, creativity, and overall organizational performance.

Boosting Employee Morale and Retention
The rehiring of a boomerang employee sends a powerful message to the current workforce. It demonstrates that the organization values and supports employees even after they leave. This can improve overall employee morale and enhance loyalty. 

Creating a Boomerang-Friendly Culture

Embracing boomerang employees can foster a culture of growth, loyalty, and mutual support. As a result, you’ll have happier employees, who are more likely to stay with the organization over the long term. 

There are some key practices organizations can adopt to encourage boomerang employees and benefit from their return. 

Maintain Strong Relationships
Build and nurture relationships with former employees by staying connected through alumni networks, social media, and periodic check-ins. This ensures a positive rapport and keeps the door open for potential return opportunities.

Perform Exit Interviews and Gather Feedback
Conduct thorough exit interviews to understand the reasons behind an employee's departure. Gather feedback on their experience, suggestions for improvement, and reasons they might consider returning. This information can help organizations address concerns and make necessary changes to enhance employee satisfaction.

Practice Transparent Communication
Maintain open lines of communication with former employees, keeping them informed about organizational updates and potential opportunities. This demonstrates an ongoing commitment to their professional growth and reinforces the idea of a boomerang-friendly culture.

Increase Employee Retention with Borderless 

Offer your staff the Borderless experience. Our friendly, easy-to-use platform is enjoyable for employers and employees alike. Plus, we help you craft compliant contracts, localized benefits packages, and support you throughout employee onboarding to ensure retention. 

Book a demo today to learn more about our comprehensive Employer of Record (EOR) Services.