Should You Rehire an Employee?

culture leadership people Jan 26, 2022

The staffing crisis in our industry makes it difficult for businesses to attract new talent because of the high cost of the hiring process. Is rehiring an employee a solution? What are the benefits and disadvantages of this decision? 

When it comes to rehiring employees, the topic becomes very personal for me. I was an employee of an amazing company that I love, still to this day, but after nearly 20 years I decided to leave so I could grow beyond this organization. Everything that I knew about business and franchising I have learned there. But I wanted to explore other companies and expand my horizons.

When I called my boss to let him know, he reminded me that if I left, I could never go back. Believe me, it was one of the hardest decisions I made but I stood by it because I knew this was right for me.

That didn’t make me a bad employee. Nor someone that should not be rehired, especially considering that if I returned, I would have brought more value, knowledge, and experience to the company. That never happened, but they would still have maintained their no rehire policy, regardless of the reason why I left.

Why do Companies Don’t Rehire Employees?

Some companies have a no rehire policy to prevent people from leaving because turnover is the biggest hidden expense in businesses. In my case, having this no rehire policy work for them to keep me longer.

Watch this video and learn how to reduce turnover with these 5 best practices.

Businesses also don’t want personnel coming back because the onboarding process is costly, so they rather don’t invest in a former employee that already turned their back on the company. There are also legal issues, especially when there is some sort of litigation.

For you to decide whether or not you should rehire someone, first analyze why do employees leave. Some people turn their resignation to seek better opportunities, better pay, or a greater possibility for growth. Others leave for reasons not related to the quality of the work or lack of commitment, but for personal circumstances, like moving or parenting.

On a personal note, I don’t think that having a strict no rehire policy is good. My recommendation is to have a more flexible policy in which you and your people decide whether an employee that has left your organization should or should not be rehired. 

Learn here all about my “hire slow, fire slow” mantra to have a better performance in your business.

Rehire Policy and Procedures: What to Consider

  1.  Document the terms. Whether you decide to rehire employees or not, you must put your policy on paper so you can transfer that information to the hiring managers or anybody involved in the hiring process.

Also, set a process in place to ensure that this policy is being followed. The last thing you want is to have inconsistency on this matter. 

  1.  Have an organized and complete employee database. There needs to be a place where you have all of your worker's information, new and old, so you can review each candidate as part of the hiring process.

You must search if the prospects have previously worked for you and, in case they have if they are eligible for rehire.

  1.  Document the reasons employees leave. When a worker separates from your organization, voluntarily or involuntarily, you should put the causes on this database, in as much detail as you can, so that you can access the information later on.

Facts and particulars are important, especially for voluntary resignations, and will be of great value if that employee comes back. 

  1.  Write down a recommendation. You or whoever is making the hiring process must leave a rehire or no rehire message written down, the reasons why, and what would have to change to decide otherwise.

Put as many notes as possible because policies and people change over time. For example, if somebody leaves because of attendance, but was a college student at that time, then attendance may not be an issue if he comes back as a graduate.

At the end of the day, you need to determine what is right for your organization, your culture, and your team. The best way that you can do that is by considering all of the reasons why people leave and creating the necessary processes so that your employees can follow your rehire or no rehire policy. 

If you do this, you’ll be able to delegate decisions to the managers in charge of doing the hiring, so you’ll have the freedom to do other things, whether it is preparing your organization for growth, opening new units, or going on vacation.

One last recommendation: be flexible. Situations, time, generations, and the environment of businesses change and you need to adapt. Also, listen to your team members to see if there are unique cases that should be considered for rehire or any situation that could modify your policy. 

Learn more about how systems like these can help you delegate operations to your team, grow into a multi-unit organization, and expand your freedom as a business owner by joining our next Multi-unit Franchise Masterclass. In these sessions, we teach the systems that you need to put in place as a multi-unit franchisee to be more successful. 

We do this masterclass once a quarter, so visit to review when our next session will be. And don’t forget to follow us on our social media (Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn) and subscribe to our YouTube Channel where we share tips and information so that you can be successful in your business and help you grow.


  • What would have to happen for you to consider rehiring an employee who left?
  • What would make a worker eligible for rehire?
  • How well documented are your hiring procedures? 
  • Are you able to delegate this critical task or do you still need to get involved?  


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