Hiring boomerang employees as consultants


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When a company is looking at talent acquisition and recruitment of a consultant it is typically looking at a brand new candidate i.e. a fresh face who has never worked with the company before. But now a new trend is emerging where these fresh candidates are having to compete against an emerging breed/category/type of employees i.e. the boomerang employees, for positions of consultants.

Now you may wonder what is a boomerang employee?

A boomerang employee is an employee who leaves an organization for whatever reason and at a later point of time rejoins the company. It is the new and growing trend of bringing aboard a former employee.

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One of the most popular and possibly the best ways to leverage the benefits of a boomerang employee is by hiring them as a consultant. Many organisations are actively looking out for former talented employees as they come with certain benefits which are a familiarity of the company’s culture, require lesser training and have gained additional skills in their employment elsewhere.

  • They come in with knowledge of the company’s culture. Unless the company has gone through a major change, it is likely that the boomerang employee already knows what works within the company and is accustomed to its organizational framework. policies and procedures. So when he returns as a consultant he will immediately be able to fit in culturally or otherwise, and requires little to no time in adapting himself.
  • Boomerangs who come in as consultants require less training. They have already worked in the company so they are familiar with the tools and softwares, and are also well versed with the specialized skills required.  This works out cost and time effective for the organization. This is especially useful when it comes to niche skills which are not easy to come across in the job market.
  • During their absence a boomerang employee would have worked in different organizations and settings, and learned new skills and strategies that will come in handy during their time as a consultant. They have also gained valuable experience handling different problems and come in with a fresh insight on what works best.

Boomerang employees as consultants are becoming more accepted, and as we can see it is for good reason. There was a time when ex-employees who left their job for better opportunities would be deemed unfit for rehire. But this machiavellian need to prove a point or hold a grudge is no more considered a rational approach towards the well-being of the company, especially if it means that it stands in the way of the organization’s well-being and progress.

This changing mindset in multiple companies’ HR practises is evidenced in a study conducted on more than 1800 HR professionals from different organizations, by The Workforce Institute at Kronos Incorporated and WorkplaceTrends.com.

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This survey showed that more than 50% of the HR professionals said that at one point of time their company had strict policies against rehiring even if the employee left on good terms. But now that has changed and more than 76% of them said that now their organizations’ are more accepting of hiring boomerang employees than they were 5 years ago. Even managers see eye-to-eye with this HR trend, and more than 2/3 of them are of the opinion that rehiring former employees is a lucrative idea.

 

This survey though conducted on US companies only, echoes a changing trend in the global hiring scenario as well.

 

This trend is a 2-way street and is not limited to employers only.  This is substantiated by the same survey which suggests that in the last 5 years  85% of HR professionals have received job applications from former employees, with half of them being rehired. 

This is especially true with millennials who as of 2015 are the largest generation in the US workforce.

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  A study by the Bureau of Labor Statistics shows that millennials typically last only 2 years at a job as opposed to the average which is about 4.6 years.  But a whooping 46% of them are looking at their previous organizations for re-employment.  So now we have a whole generation of employees who are progressive and not opposed to working with their one-time employers, especially when it comes to consulting. They are knocking on their previous organization’s door eager for fresh and better opportunities there.

The writing’s on the wall. With so much competition and job opportunities it is not wise to let go of the right fit or lose the right consultant for the wrong reasons.  The goal is to hire the best possible candidate for the job and a boomerang employee could be the one, as he comes with the added benefits that a fresh consultant may not be able to provide. This is why more and more companies are now jumping on the bandwagon and will continue to do so. So companies to stay ahead in the game should keep the door open for this win-win possibility and be quick and unhesitant in embracing this trend.

 

At Resource Torrent we specialize in targeting boomerang employees as contractors to maximize value for your organization, which will ultimately help produce the best ROI for your valuable dollars.