Boomerang Employee

What Is a Boomerang Employee?

A boomerang employee is someone who leaves their current place of work to return to the very same company at a later date.

Why Might an Employee Leave Your Company and Then Want to Return?

There are a few reasons why this might happen, including:

  • Maybe they left to try another career path, only to find out that it wasn’t for them
  • Maybe they left for personal reasons to concentrate on raising a child or to spend time with a sick family member
  • Maybe they received a more attractive offer elsewhere – whether it was better pay, more responsibility, or the opportunity to learn new skills.

Is this a good thing or a bad thing? Should you be looking to rehire staff that has previously left your business?

Pros and Cons of Boomerang Employees

There are plenty of pros and cons that you need to think about when you consider rehiring a boomerang employee. Here are a few to think about.


  • They know your company culture and must enjoy that to want to return
  • They know the job inside out already; there is less need for investment in training
  • They’ve been onboarded before, so the second time is much quicker
  • If they left to learn new skills, they would be bringing them back to your business


  • No matter how good they were in their position before, you may have moved on with your processes and they may no longer be the best fit.
  • If they’ve been away for a while, the entire business could have changed – the management, the culture – and this could leave them feeling out of place when they expected to fit right back in.
  • If they didn’t leave on good terms, you should think twice about rehiring them. No matter how good they were at their job, there is a strong likelihood that old issues may come back, and that could disrupt the current team.

How Do You Hire a Boomerang Employee?

If you’ve decided to talk to the boomerang employee, you should consider a few things when interviewing with the prospect of rehiring.

Here are some questions you should consider asking:

  • Why do you want to come back?
  • What have you been doing or working on since you last worked here?
  • Do you have any issues with coworkers, management, or culture that caused you to leave the first time around?
  • What have you added to your skill set since you last worked at the company?


See our full list of over 50 Small Business Terms here


The leading scheduling software designed for hourly employees. Build your work schedule in minutes with ZoomShift.