With many of us in the grip of a recession, we’re beginning to see more and more of our friends, relatives and colleagues being forced to take voluntary redundancy. Businesses are folding, public services being reduced and fewer and fewer jobs are being posted online. If you suddenly find yourself out of work, it can be a stressful, upsetting time which can lead to despair. But overcoming unexpected redundancy is far from impossible and can in fact lead you to make life improvements. Below we’ve compiled a guide to getting the most out of your shifting fortunes, and get back on top as quickly as possible:
Make a Budget
You will need to adjust to living frugally. The best thing to do is ration out your redundancy pay to make sure you’ll be covered if the job search takes a while. Set up a weekly budget and rigidly stick to it. Be prepared to hunt for deals, vouchers and freebies where possible. Don’t let money add to your worries.
Work on Your CV
From a simple update to a rewrite, now is the time to work on your CV. Plenty of websites will offer a CV critiquing service as part of their standard package, and it’s never too late to get advice. Put simply, now is your chance to rebrand yourself by making your CV look like the CV of a star employee. This can be achieved with as little as a day’s work and makes a big difference when it comes to firms looking to hire you.
Really consider what you want from your future and assess your skills picking out the strengths which will make you stand out to employers. If you have been wanting to move up to a management role for some time yet never found the opportunity, seize the day, tailor your C.V. and really demonstrate your management skills and determination, draw upon skills which will make you perfect for a management role.
If you’re struggling to find advice online or would simply rather speak to someone face-to-face, there are many job hunting advice groups and meet up’s where professionals can advise you on exactly how to go about restructuring your CV. Friends and family are also worth turning too as they will help you realise your skill set.
Get Job Hunting
The people who recover from redundancy quickest are the people who treat unemployment as a full-time job. Instead of wallowing in despair, make sure you get out of bed at your usual time, get online and get job searching!
Many online job sites carry thousands of postings for all skill sets which is a fantastic way to research your industry to find out what is available.
Try also to break up your internet search time by dropping your newly-updated CV at the workplace of prospective employers – or phoning them up to ask about employment. Remember: you probably have more skills than you think. Spread your net wide and apply for as many positions as possible and you’ll be guaranteed to find something. However, remember your job applications must be thought out, and edited to suit each separate position available.
More and more people these days are turning to self-employment as a means for keeping their heads above water. If you have the means and skills to do so, setting up a small business may be the best possible route out of your current impasse. Aside from any revenue you may bring in, you’ll instantly find yourself entitled to hundreds of different forms of tax-breaks: from reclaiming your heating to even a percentage off your internet bill (provided your business requires the internet).
Don’t be fooled, going this route can be hard work: but the sense of reward if it pays off can be sensational. Take stock of your skills and see what you have to offer that people might pay for. If you are lucky, your redundancy package can help you with the start up costs. While being made redundant isn’t ideal, it could be the kick you need to launch that idea you always think about.
In the cut throat world of job hunting the phrase ‘it’s not what you know, it’s who you know’ is often uttered. This is where your networking will pay off. Sites such as meetup.com are a great way to meet people from your industry. Get to know people, make friends within the industry and put a face to your name. You never know where opportunities may arise, but getting out there as much as possible and meeting industry professionals gives you a greater chance of success.
You might have desires to have a complete career change but be held back by your qualifications. You will be surprised, but many jobs can be achievable if you demonstrate potential and experience. However if you still find yourself short of the requirements for a particular job role, consider further education. While studying is expensive, it can be achieved part time, therefore spreading the fees over time, and some employers even subsidise fees when taking on an eager new employee. If your dream job requires some additional qualifications, it is worth the time and money; considering the number of hours you spend at work it must be something you enjoy.
Redundancy can be a huge set back, it can affect your self esteem and hold you back from applying for particular job roles. However redundancy can actually be used as a stepping stone to a brighter future. Whether it’s a forced push into working for yourself, or that nudge which forces you to consider your career altogether, don’t allow yourself to fall into the job hunting rut—get out there and take the opportunity to find your dream career and really assess what you want from life.