Next generation wireless networks are expected to provide much higher data throughput and reliable connections for a far larger number of wireless service subscribers and machine-type nodes, which results in increasingly stringent requirements of spectral efficiency (SE) and energy efficiency (EE). Orthogonal frequency-division multiplexing with index modulation (OFDM-IM) stands out as a promising solution to satisfy the SE requirement with a reasonable increase in system complexity. However, the EE of OFDM-IM is still required to be enhanced. Moreover, diversity gain is difficult to harvest from the frequency domain without affecting the SE for OFDM-IM systems, which hinders further reliability enhancement. In this regard, relay-assisted OFDM-IM, as a promising joint paradigm to achieve both high SE and EE, was proposed and has been studied since last year. The objectives of this study are to summarize the recent achievements of this joint paradigm, articulate its pros and cons, and reveal the corresponding challenges and future work. More importantly, we provide a full picture and insights into the implementation of this new paradigm in next generation networks.