Losing your job through redundancy can be one of the hardest and most upsetting things to face. As well as worrying about how you will cope financially, it can knock your confidence, leave you feeling ashamed or confused and cause a great deal of stress. Redundancy is overwhelming for the majority of us, but there are ways of dealing with it that will help you to get back on track as quickly as possible. Here are some of our top tips on how to deal with an unexpected redundancy.
A natural response to being made redundant is to panic. When you have bills to pay or a family to support, it’s an understandable reaction. However, panicking won’t help you find your next job any quicker – in fact, it’s likely to slow the process down because you won’t be thinking logically.
Firstly, look at your financial situation as a top priority. If you’ve been with your employer for at least two years, you’re entitled to redundancy pay, which should help in the short term. To find out how much statutory redundancy pay you’re entitled to, head here on the gov.uk site. Secondly, look at your outgoings so that you know how long any redundancy pay will keep you afloat for. If you run out of money before finding a new job, you might be entitled to claim Jobseeker’s Allowance or Income Support.
Don’t take it personally
It’s hard not to take it personally when you’re made redundant. The natural reaction is to think you did something wrong or aren’t good enough for some reason. Remember: there are many reasons why thousands of people lose their jobs through redundancy all across the UK every year and it’s usually down to the employer, not the employee. Your employer may be facing financial difficulties, your role may no longer exist, or the company may be merging or relocating. Talk to your manager about exactly why you were made redundant so you can fully understand the situation rather than speculating.
Admittedly, this is easier said than done when you’ve just lost your job, but by keeping a positive frame of mind, it will make you more attractive to potential employers. If your new job search is getting frustrating, try to do something every day that helps to keep your positivity levels up. Try to take advantage of your new spare time to exercise, which can help you focus and feel better, attend networking events that you don’t normally have to time for or even conduct your job search from your favourite coffee shop.
Use the opportunity to do something different
There are actually plenty of positives that can come out of being made redundant. Many of us end up stuck in a rut when it comes to our jobs but are too scared to leave because we need financial security. When the decision is taken out of our hands, it forces us to move on. This could be your opportunity to try something new or change direction in your career.
Use this time to think about what you really want. Are you happy in your career? Do you have a passion you would like to pursue? Would this be a good time to further your career by attending a training course or studying towards a qualification which you don’t usually have time to do? Is this a good time to become self-employed? Although it may not feel like it, there are plenty of opportunities available to you right now.
Build your experience
If it’s taking longer than you hoped to secure your next role, use the time to add to your experience. Volunteer, do some temporary or contract work, help out on a consultancy basis or freelance for a while. As well as improving your skills and gaining experience, you’ll be continuing your networking and opening doors that could lead to full-time, permanent employment.
Redundancy can be a difficult time for anyone so make sure you reach out to friends and family for support. More people than you think will have been through a redundancy scenario and can give you good advice.
As recruiters, we naturally see a lot of people between roles, many of them following redundancy. As well as helping you to find a new role, we also offer advice for perfecting your CV, as well as interview techniques. We can also discuss with you whether temping would be a realistic stepping stone in your chosen field. If you need any help following a redundancy, please reach out and we’ll be more than happy to assist.