With businesses resuming normal operations and revenue generation, now is an excellent time to rehire employees who were laid off or furloughed during the pandemic’s onset and subsequent global distress.
Reboarding is the process of reintegrating former employees into your organization following an absence, regardless of the duration of their absence. This could be viewed as a natural way to reintroduce highly skilled employees to your team. Reboarding has the added benefit of boosting team morale and can be viewed as a celebration, as the return of a peer is always a source of joy for the team.
Having said that, reboarding is a complicated process that is dependent on a variety of variables that affect your company’s efficiency. The six factors listed below can be thought of as ways to develop an effective reboarding policy that benefits both your team and your firm.
- Make financial/financial resource-based decisions
The worst-case scenario is that you are forced to lay off an employee who has been reboarded for the second time! This results in economic losses for the business and intellectual property damage for the employee. To avoid such setbacks, particularly if the employee was laid off during a financial crisis or global financial meltdown, check your coffers to determine whether you are financially prepared to rehire them in the first place. Before bringing back a former employee, carefully evaluate your cash flow and projected revenue for the near future. Additionally, it is critical to keep in mind that if your business is unable to hire new employees due to financial instability, you should refrain from rehiring laid-off employees during this phase. If rehiring a previous employee becomes necessary, consider rehiring them on a “temp-to-hire” basis while offering them short-term, temporary work. Ascertain that they are also aware of this prior to hiring them.
- Prior to making an offer of employment, gain an understanding of the open position’s function
Certain benchmark questions must be asked prior to making the final decision to offer the open position to the rehired employee. The vacant position may be well-suited for a new hire, or it may even be filled by IJP (Internal Job Postings). Before offering a position to a previously laid-off employee, the hiring department must set their emotions aside and gain a thorough understanding of the position’s dynamics. It is critical to ensure that rehires are subjected to the same procedures (from interviews to background checks) as any prospective employee when offered employment with your company. This protects your employees’ integrity and morale. Individuals who are the most qualified for the job should be hired. There is no preconceived notion that the position should be made available to a rehire. It is critical to address any concerns raised during the interview process prior to making any decisions.
- Effective communication is critical
Communication is vital in any organization’s decision-making process. The same rules apply when rehiring a previously laid-off employee. Training managers and coworkers of the previous employee can provide additional insight into the rehire’s efficiency. These would indicate whether the team as a whole felt comfortable working with them, particularly if they were terminated for poor performance or disciplinary actions. This is important because rehiring an employee who was never a good fit for the organization would be unpopular with stakeholders. If you decide to rehire an employee, you must ensure that these personnel changes are communicated to all employees to ensure a transparent and streamlined process. When many people are furloughed or laid off during a pandemic, the last thing you need is former employees raising concerns about your hiring policies being influenced. To avoid such situations, maintain a highly regulated hiring process to ensure a seamless transition for rehires. This would boost the morale of both the rehire and your organization’s members.
- Familiarize yourself with the documents that must be signed during the Reboarding process
Employees would have signed a series of documents as a part of their onboarding as former employees of your organization. Many of these documents will remain valid as long as your hiring procedures have not been significantly altered. Having said that, tax forms such as withholding certificates and Section 3 of I-9 forms would be revised annually. These may be required to be signed in order for your hiring process to remain compliant with government regulations. It is up to you to determine the utility of each form in order to streamline your process. Depending on the severity of the employee’s situation, some of their benefits may have been revoked during their separation. When it comes to reclaiming those benefits, it is prudent to be partially sympathetic in order to facilitate an easy transition.
- Rehires and Re-Orientation
Any new hire must complete the onboarding process in order to become efficient and competent with the firm’s operations and code of conduct. Given that rehires would have already been subjected to this process, new standards and procedures may have developed or existing ones may have been amended. As a result, it would be only fair to require your rehired employees to complete a condensed version of employee onboarding to ensure they are familiar with current departmental norms and requirements. Retrain your rehires, if necessary, to increase their productivity. It would be a blessing to have a dual-trained and experienced employee as a role model on your team.
- Maintain a regular record of your rehires
Given their tenure with the firm and hands-on experience, their reappointments should be a boon to the entire team with which they work. They should be able to transform the potential of other employees through their actions. As a result, it is critical that these rehires contribute to the firm’s cultural enrichment. The performance of these rehires should be monitored and observed continuously throughout their training period in order to adjust their training activities as necessary to “nudge” them in the right direction. Specific milestones could be established to determine how well new hires have integrated into the organization, which these rehires would have to meet if they fell short of the required standards. Throughout this time period, it is critical to maintain a meticulous follow-up with the training managers. If the rehires continue to fall short of expectations, letting them go may be the best course of action.