Redundancy is one of the most stressful life event you can face. One minute you have a good job, a regular salary and job security, and the next your world is turned upside down and your future can begin to look rather uncertain.
The good news is that if you have been with your employer for a long period of time you should be entitled to a reasonable redundancy payment. Make sure you get paperwork from your employer regarding this and read it carefully. This will offer you a little bit of a financial buffer whilst you look for a new job. The other good news is that if you are working through your notice period once you have been made redundant then you will be entitled to reasonable time off for interviews so you can begin looking for new employment straight away.
Once you have worked your notice period and are looking for work, remember you can sign on for Job Seekers Allowance. You might not think you need it but there is no way of knowing how long it will take you to find a new job so make sure you claim what you are entitled to from the start.
Change of Direction
If you have always fancied a change of career but were too afraid to make the leap then why not consider redundancy the push that you need to make that change, as you have nothing to lose. Make sure you research the type of job you want properly, as if your current skill set isn’t right for the job you will need to look at retraining and that can take time. Consider how long retraining will take, how much it will cost and perhaps most importantly where you might be on the pay scale once you have those new qualifications. If this would mean a smaller salary then you may need to research a budget and look at your finances to see if you can cope with this in the long term.
There is often lots of financial support available to people who are looking to retrain, especially for certain professions, so make sure you look into that as well.
Update your CV
Experts advise keeping your CV up to date whether you are employed or looking for work but unfortunately most people do not. Take redundancy as an opportunity to give your CV a complete overhaul.
But don’t just update your CV in its current forma. If you haven’t been looking for a job for a few years then you should know that CV writing standards have changed a good bit over the last few years. There is a good chance that you have your CV organised with all your previous employment in the usual chronological order. Rather than doing this make sure that your CV focuses on the direction you want to head in. Make sure that you highlight all the skills and knowledge that you could bring to a new role. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is not realising, and showing a potential employer, just how relevant your skills and achievements are.
If you are applying for several different roles with different companies then don’t forget to tailor your CV to each role. In general, a CV should be no longer that 2 pages, you might need to trim your previous experience to do this and make a summary of your earlier career highlights.
If your skills are in high demand then it might be worth joining an agency, if they are able to place you in a temporary position easily then you can continue your search for a permanent job whilst still earning. This may also give you the opportunity to expand your skill set and maybe even add a few more things to your CV.
Quite often temporary work can lead to a permanent position within the same company; it is certainly worth considering.
If you have been working in the same field for many years then it is reasonable to assume that you may have built up a contact list of other people who work within the same industry. Now is a good time to get in touch with them and put the feelers out to see if there are any suitable vacancies
If you have professional acquaintances within the same industry then it worth putting the feelers out to see if there are any suitable vacancies going in other companies in the same field. You should also consider networking online as well; LinkedIn is a great platform that will help you with ways in which you can increase your visibility.
It is hard not to feel bitter when you are made redundant but try to look at is as a chance to make a fresh new start and maybe even take your career in a different direction.