While you may think “It will never happen to me,” the fact of the matter is that people lose their jobs every day. Apart from being fired for bad behavior or poor performance, people are let go due to circumstances that are outside of their control, such as a new owner or CEO.
Whatever the reason, losing a job is never easy, especially if you enjoyed working for a company. If so, you may be wondering what your chances are of being hired again. To put your mind at ease, while rehiring a terminated employee can prove challenging for all concerned parties, it does happen.
Here is what you need to know about the rehire policy after termination that companies generally have.
What’s the Difference Between Being Terminated and Fired?
People tend to use the terms terminated and fired interchangeably, which is perfectly OK since they actually do mean the same thing. Employees are fired, or terminated from their positions, for multiple reasons, which can include:
- Substandard work performance
- Consistent lateness
- Gross misconduct, such as theft or vandalism
However, people’s jobs are also terminated for reasons that have nothing to do with their personal conduct. Examples of such scenarios include when a company is taken over by another, when new executives step in, or when a company has to lay off employees due to financial trouble.
In such cases, the softer term “letting go” may be used instead, since firing typically has more negative connotations. In the end, the term one uses to refer to the termination of employment is less important than the actual reason for termination.
Can You Get Rehired After Termination?
In general, employees who are fired stand a good chance of finding alternative employment. The reason for this is that potential employers have no way of finding out that you were fired or let go from your previous job if they don’t launch an investigation about you or try to find more information regarding your previous employment through informal channels.
While many, or most, companies do a background check before hiring a new employee, such background checks do not include information regarding your employment history. These checks mostly divulge information regarding your criminal record, driving history, and credit status.
If the prospective employer chooses to contact the HR team of your previous company, they’re bound to share only objective information, such as the start and end dates of employment, to prevent any possible lawsuits.
That said, if you were fired for gross misconduct, such as stealing from the company or physically assaulting a coworker, your misconduct can be recorded as a criminal offense. In such a case, the prospective employer will be privy to this information when they gain access to your criminal record.
Can You Get Rehired at the Same Company?
While getting rehired at the same company that fired you can prove challenging, it’s not impossible. Your chances of being rehired will be dependent on a few variables, though.
First, the reason for the termination of your employment will come into play. For instance, you’ll stand a much better chance of getting rehired if your termination was due to internal restructuring than if your performance was poor.
Second, whether you can be rehired will depend on the company’s rehire policy and procedures. If you were fired for gross misconduct, you may have been added to a no-rehire list, in which case your chances of being rehired will be very slim to zero.
Many companies may also have a no-rehire policy where employees who were fired because of tardiness or poor performance are concerned.
In the event that a company is willing to consider your application even though you were fired for poor performance, you’ll have to prove that your work ethic has improved.
Employees who were part of an involuntary reduction in or reshuffling of the workforce, or who voluntarily resigned, should find it much easier to reapply for a position at the same company.
How Long After Someone Is Fired Can They Be Rehired at the Same Company?
The length of time you should wait before reapplying at the same company will depend on the company’s policy, and also the reason for your termination. In general, many companies permit terminated employees to reapply three months after their employment has ended.
In the event that you were wrongfully fired from your job, the court may order that you are immediately reinstated. If you’re unsure about whether you’re able to reapply for a new job at your old company, and/or when you can do so, it’s best to contact the HR department.
How To Get Rehired After Being Terminated
If you are eligible to reapply at your old company, you need to ensure that you give yourself the best chance of being rehired by taking the correct steps. Here are a few tips you can consider when you’re reapplying for your old job:
Reach Out To Your Former Manager
Hopefully, you’re still on good terms with your former manager/supervisor, or the HR manager, because an honest and open chat with them can enhance your chances of getting rehired. If misconduct or poor performance led to you being fired, it’s important that you acknowledge this and take full responsibility for your actions.
Let them know how much the company and your job meant to you and that you have mended your ways. Remind them that you know the dynamics of your team well and that you have all the necessary skills and knowledge to do the job.
Demonstrate Your Suitability for the Job and the Company
While it’s good to say you’re sorry and that you really want to come back, the company is likely to require more from you before they give you your job back.
In the event that you were fired because of your actions, you will need to prove to the company that your misconduct will not be repeated.
For the best results, you should back up your words with concrete evidence. For example, if you were fired for aggressive behavior and poor teamwork skills, you can show them that you’ve completed relevant courses or are going for regular therapy sessions.
Put yourself in the shoes of the decision-makers and directly address the concerns they may have about rehiring you.
Remain Professional and Flexible
Reapplying for a position at a company that fired you places you at a disadvantage. You will have to pull out all the stops if you want to stand a chance of being rehired.
Be mentally prepared for the fact that you may not receive a warm welcome and that you may have to answer some tough questions. Whatever the company throws your way, remain professional and polite throughout.
You should also consider the fact that the company may offer you a lower position than you’ve had before, and for less pay.
If you really want to work for the company, you may choose to be flexible and accept their offer. Since you’ve already worked in a more senior position, you will probably be able to quickly work your way up again.
Request for Rehire Letter
It may be a good idea to follow up your chat with the HR department with a request for rehire letter or email. Be sure to reemphasize that you have the necessary skills and experience to fill this position and that you already know the team and also the company culture.
Also, be sure to remind them of the steps you’ve taken to improve yourself since you were fired. Last, you can state your willingness to consider any other suitable job opening they may have, in the event that your position has already been filled.
Here’s a sample letter to request rehire after termination that you can consult when you’re drafting your letter:
478 Saxon Rd.
Brooklyn, NY 11229
December 1, 2022
56 Franklin Rd.
New York, NY 54321
Dear Ms. Smith,
Thank you for taking the time yesterday to chat with me about the possibility of returning to my former position as a Project Manager at Technology Now.
As I have mentioned, I sincerely regret losing my temper with one of the company’s biggest clients. Losing my job made me realize two things: that I need help and that the project management team at Technology Now means the world to me. I have been going for regular therapy sessions and will be doing so for some time to come. There is no way that I will allow my emotions to get the better of me again.
Seeing that the position has not been filled since I left, I am asking that the company considers rehiring me. I know the ins and outs of the job and am on good terms with everyone on the project- management team. I am certain that I can make a positive contribution to the team, and to the company at large.
In the event, however, that the company has decided not to fill that position again, would you please consider me for any other suitable job opening that may be available?
Thank you again for assisting me with this matter. I sincerely appreciate it.