How to prepare for redundancy whether its thanks to a global pandemic or two or something worse!
If you’re facing redundancy, your priority should be to take care of yourself and your family. Make sure you have enough money to cover your expenses for the time being, and if possible, try to find a new job before you’re officially let go.
In the meantime, you can do a few things to make the transition easier: update your resume, reach out to your network of contacts, and attend job fairs and networking events. Finally, don’t be afraid to ask for help – plenty of support groups and resources are available for people who have lost their jobs.
So, you have had the dreaded meeting or email. It’s finally happening you are being made redundant.
It’s not you; it’s us. We don’t need you anymore, sorry!
Receiving this news can be extremely worrying and stressful if the loss of this income is going to be a significant problem, especially if it’s going to be a major problem very soon.
Being made redundant may fill you with dread or with relief; either way, the loss of income in the short or medium term might bring with it financial problems you could do without.
If you’re thinking
- I lost my job and have no money
- I lost my job, and I’m scared
Here are a few ideas on how to prepare for redundancy.
Know your redundancy rights
The first thing is to understand your redundancy rights.
What has your employer agreed to do if or when making people redundant? And what do they have to do by law?
- How much of a payout can you expect?
- How much notice do they need to give you?
- What consultation process do they need to take you through?
- Do you have leave days to take, or will they be added to the payout?
- Is there a union or staff forum that can answer your questions or support you?
ACAS (the Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) gives free advice on all employment issues.
Citizens Advice your local bureau can give free employment advice
Money-saving expert also has a good section on redundancy
The more you know about your employer’s policies and procedures alongside what are the statuary requirements, the better you are to secure what you are entitled to.
Know your money intimately.
Firstly, do you know your numbers? Do you know how much money is coming in and how much is going out? Because in a short while, there may be no money coming in and only money going out.
With only money going out and none coming in is likely to be financially sub-optimal, to say the least. So you need to understand what is going on with your money before any alarm bells start ringing
some of the critical areas you need to know are
- What was your income?
- How much of your spending is essential?
- How much of your spending is discretional?
- What of your spending is now up for negotiation?
- What regular bills do you need to maintain to stay in your house and eat three meals a day?
- Are there any things coming up on the horizon that will require your money other than day-to-day expenses?
- What are your typical monthly living costs, basic, discretionary and luxury levels?
- How much savings do you have, and how easy would it be for you to get your hands on it?
- How long can you last before you are desperate for an income?
Gather all your paperwork from the dreaded drawer or shoebox of shame and put it into a file with dividers separating everything either by the bank, product, or whatever way makes sense for you.
From this, you should be able to see what is going on with your money, where the pinch points might be and if any immediate action is needed.
Reduce your outgoings
go through your bank and credit card statements or even better your money app statements and review all of your outgoings.
What are the bills that are essential, i.e. electricity, gas, rent or mortgage? When do they come out and when was the last time that you reviewed them?
You might find that you could make some quick cuts to your outgoings by reviewing some of your standard utility costs like broadband, electricity, gas or mobile phone bills. There are several comparison sites out there that will help you see if you are paying more than you need to.
The trick here is to make sure that you are on a good deal. You don’t have to get the best deal. Searching for the best deal on everything might take more time than it’s worth. Find a good deal and move on to the next money-saving exercise.
Could you haggle on your rent payments and ask for a reduced rate? If you don’t ask!
Track all your spending
Would you want someone in charge of your finances if they said: “I don’t know where it all goes?” So maybe it’s time to understand where your money is going.
On reviewing your spending is there anything you think you could easily do without. If so, get rid of it.
Is there anything you could cut down on or do less of? Common things here are eating out, drinks after work (I guess you don’t have to worry about that for the time being), takeaway food and so on.
Is there anything that you could stop spending money on? Gym memberships, magazine or online subscriptions that you could at least pause if not stop altogether.
Could you change the way you spend money?
Could you use more cash, making each transaction more visible and possibly a little more painful than using plastic?
Could you shop at cheaper shops changing to supermarket or discount brands to save more money?
Are you able to suspend any small-medium or substantial purchases until you get another job? Taking your foot off the gas while your income goes down will play a significant role in reducing your stress around money at this time.
Go through each line of your spending and ask yourself
- Do I really need this now or can it wait?
- Can I afford it?
- Can I get it cheaper anywhere else?
- Will I use it?
You could use a money app like MoneyDashboard* to track all your spending in near real-time.
Who do you need to tell?
Do you need to tell anybody that you have been made redundant? Like banks or insurers, as they may be able to help you out or adjust any payments, you are already making.
Could you, should you, would you tell family and friends that you have been made redundant. They might be able to help in some way, especially if you had a specific ask. It will at least let them know that you are currently going through some potentially tricky changes.
Deal with debt
Debt is not great at the best of times, but these are now not the best of times.
It’s always a tricky one to consider having savings in the bank vs paying off debt. The savings in the bank are probably not earning much interest, but the debt likely is. Which one of these scenarios would help you sleep better at night? Little or no savings or little or no debt?
If you don’t have a debt plan, now is probably a good time to get one.
Could you pay off any of your debts right away?
And if you did what position would this leave you in?
Could you renegotiate the repayment process? You may be able to temporarily lower the payments. And what effect would this have on your level and amount of debt/payments in the long run?
Make sure that you are making the minimum payments on all your debts and then decide if going to work on the debts will help you in this situation.
You could use the debt snowball method paying off the smallest first and then going to the next biggest one and so on.
Or you could use the debt avalanche method paying off the highest interest rate once and going down the list that way.
Start saving money now
The more money you have, the more options you have. The more you have in liquid assets, i.e. those that you can get your hands on quickly like cash, the more financially resilient you will be and better able to weather most financial storms.
The way to create more savings is to grow the gap between your income and your expenditure, which can mean increasing your income and or reducing your outgoings.
If you are about to be made redundant, reducing your outgoings will help slow down the money flowing out of your accounts, helping you keep more of your money.
Save as much money as you can at the beginning of the month and then spend what’s left. This is a better way to build savings than to spend and then save. It’s a simple trick but helps with the phycology of money and saving.
Each month you can see if you can squeeze your expenditure down and down until you reach a point where you feel, naah that’s enough and it probably is.
And in the words of Marjorie Dawes doors from Little Britain if you save half your money, then you can spend twice as much next month!? (don’t do that)
Budgeting can help you to give every pound a job to do rather than just being spent with nothing left over at the end of the month.
Make yourself more employable.
Always be sincere, even if you don’t mean it.
Harry S Truman
Could you volunteer for more work, take on the jobs no one else wants to do or generally be a happy face around the place?
Do the right people know all your skills and experience? Is there something you know how to do that could benefit the company you work for but have not yet used or shown to anyone?
Maybe that coding side hustle or website you work on could help your company out.
All or some of these things might help keep you a job if you are seen as a can-do type of person.
Even if it doesn’t, it will help with a reference or when they are rehiring.
Always try and leave a company with the door left open, unless you want to slam it in their faces on the way out for effect. It’s up to you to give it a bit of thought.
Update your cv and Linkedin profile
How is your LinkedIn profile looking if you have one? If you don’t, maybe its time to get one.
Update your skills and experience, link with friends and colleagues, ask for reviews from people and put up that you are looking for work.
Don’t just say what you did in jobs, also detail any significant accomplishments or projects that you worked on and your role in them.
Get a good photo up, not one from the last hen or stag do you went on. Make it look like you want a job and won’t be a danger in the workplace.
How’s the CV looking? Neat and tidy? 2 pages?
Yes, ideally, you do need to craft a CV for each specific job, but at least having a solid template to work from is always going to make it speedier for you to edit as necessary.
Remember, someone is going to scan it very quickly when looking for the right candidate, so make sure what they are looking for stands out on your CV – hint look for it in the advertisement and job description.
Keep a positive mindset
Initially, redundancy might feel like a disaster, but it might be a blessing in disguise in the long term. Maybe it’s a chance to pivot into something else, something less boring instead, who knows.
If you can track your finances, manage your money and plan to recover from the setback, it could help you keep a positive mindset. Seeing this as a temporary setback will help put it into perspective.
Here’s hoping that losing your job is not the end of the world and you can bounce back.
FAQ: How to prepare for redundancy
How do I prepare for a redundancy consultation meeting?
-Know your rights.
-Get yourself organised, paperwork, payslips, contracts etc.
-Find out what help there may be from staff reps or unions.
-Come prepared with some ideas and alternative suggestions for redundancy
-Find out what you can about the changes beforehand and review what openings there might be that you would like to discuss more.
-Make yourself more employable.
Preparing for a redundancy consultation meeting can make sure you make the most of it and secure your rights.
Questions to ask at redundancy consultation meeting?
-What are the purpose and outcomes of the redundancy consultation exercise?
-What is the thinking behind the changes?
-What was the selection process for your redundancy
-Are there any alternative posts available, and how can you find out more?
-Are there any alternatives to redundancy that can be explored i.e. reduced pay, part-time work, unpaid leave, no further recruitment, job sharing etc
-Is voluntary redundancy an option, and what will the package consist of?
-What will be in any redundancy package?
-When will the final decision be made and communicated?
What should I say when being made redundant?
There are a few things you could say when being made redundant, but it depends on the situation and your relationship with your employer.
If you have a good relationship, you might be able to negotiate a severance package and/or remaining benefits. You could also ask if there are any other positions within the company that might be available to you.
If you don’t have a good relationship with your employer, or if they’re simply not willing to negotiate, then your best bet might be to simply thank them for the opportunity and move on.
It’s never easy being faced with unemployment, but by staying positive and keeping your head up, you’ll eventually find something new.
How can I maximize my redundancy payout?
Use it to upskill yourself.
Start a business.
Pay off debt.
Plan to use it to ride out any shortfall in income.
Top up your pension and ISA’s
How do I survive redundancy?
-Get clear on your finances, what’s coming in and going out
-Update your CV, and LinkedIn and start applying to new jobs.
-Contact your contacts.
-Keep positive something will turn up shortly.
How do I stay calm during redundancy?
-Now your numbers – how much money you need and for how long.
-Plug the leaks in your spending, things you want and not need.
-Update your CV and LinkedIn, and contact your contacts about new work.
-Create a GAME Plan for what you really want – maybe this is a time to review, reflect and redesign your life.
What should I do first when made redundant?
-Don’t panic – gather your paperwork and figure out your financial position
-Maybe take some time to reflect before you reset yourself for work again.
-Make sure you receive all the money you are entitled to
-Start looking for a new job through your network.
-Update your cv and LinkedIn profile – get the world out there that you are looking for work.
-If finances are getting tight, talk to a financial planner or coach and look for specialised help.
What to do with redundancy money?
Depending on your goals and financial situation, you can do a few things with your redundancy money.
If you’re looking to invest the money, you can put it into a variety of different investments, such as stocks, property or businesses.
Paying off debts with redundancy money could be a way to improve your financial situation.
Alternatively, if you’re planning to use the money to move somewhere new or start fresh, you can use it to cover moving expenses or costs associated with starting a new job.
Whatever you decide to do with your redundancy money, carefully consider all your options before making any decisions.
How do you survive redundancy emotionally?
Redundancy can be an emotionally tough experience, especially if you were expecting to stay in your position.
The first step is to try to maintain a positive mindset, as it can be easy to fall into a negative spiral. It is also important to remember that this is likely not a reflection on your performance or worth, but may be a result of organizational restructuring.
Take the time to grieve and experience the emotions associated with redundancy.
Once you have come to terms with the situation, think about the future – what would you like to do? What strengths do you have? What are your passions and interests?
Having a sense of purpose and direction can help you to move on from redundancy and start to look forward to the next stage of your career.
How do you negotiate a redundancy offer?
First, understand the terms of the redundancy offer. Make sure you understand exactly what is being offered and the implications of the offer.
Second, do your research. Know what is industry standard for redundancy offers, and compare it with what is being offered to you. This will help you understand the value of the offer and whether it is fair.
Third, be prepared to negotiate. Make sure you understand your rights and what you are entitled to. Discuss your concerns with the employer, and be firm but polite.
Fourth, be aware of your options. You may be able to negotiate for more money or other benefits, such as more time off work, additional training, or help with finding a new job.
Finally, get help if you need it. Consider talking to a lawyer or other professional who can advise you on the best course of action.
Following these steps will help ensure that you get the best possible outcome from your redundancy offer.
What do you say in a redundancy consultation?
A redundancy consultation can be difficult, but it is important to remain professional throughout the conversation.
When speaking to your employer, you should express your appreciation for the opportunity to work with them, and use the conversation as an opportunity to understand the reasons for the redundancy.
Make sure you listen carefully, ask questions, and clarify any information that isn’t clear. It is important to understand exactly what is being offered, and make sure you confirm any information verbally.
Ask about any available support, such as financial assistance or help with finding a new job.
Finally, take notes during the consultation, so that you can review the information afterwards.
Summary: How to prepare for redundancy
We have covered a few things you can do after losing your job or in the run-up to it.
Know your redundancy rights: determine what you are entitled to and ensure you get it.
Reduce your outgoings: Cut down, cut out, shop at cheaper places, cook at home, haggle for better contracts on utilities, internet and mobile phones and anything else you can think of.
Start saving money now: Start to build up your financial reserves to help you fill out any unemployment period. Cut your costs as best as you can.
Deal with debt: Now might be an excellent time to deal with your debt before it gets worse.
Make yourself more employable: Be the can-do person if not in this job it will help for the next one.
Get your CV and LinkedIn profile up to date and showing that you are ready for work.
Keep a positive mindset: Losing your job is not the end of the world and might be a chance to pivot to something better.
Anyway, those are my thoughts on how to prepare for redundancy let me know yours in the comments below.
How to prepare for redundancy summary table
|Understand your current financial situation, including your income, expenses, savings, and any outstanding debts.
|Know your redundancy rights
|Research and understand the legal rights and entitlements associated with redundancy in your country or region.
|Know your money intimately
|Get a clear understanding of your current financial situation, including your income, expenses, savings, and any outstanding debts.
|Reduce your outgoings
|Identify areas where you can cut back on expenses to reduce financial strain during a period of redundancy.
|Track all your spending
|Keep a record of every expense to gain a comprehensive view of your spending habits and identify areas for improvement.
|Could you change the way you spend money?
|Evaluate your spending habits and consider alternative ways to manage your money more effectively.
|Who do you need to tell?
|Determine the relevant individuals or organizations you need to inform about your redundancy, such as employers, banks, etc.
|Deal with debt
|Develop a plan to address any existing debts, such as creating a repayment strategy or seeking professional advice if necessary.
|Start saving money now
|Begin saving money as soon as possible to create a financial safety net in case of unexpected expenses or a prolonged job search.
|Make yourself more employable
|Take steps to enhance your skills, update your CV and LinkedIn profile, and explore opportunities for professional development.
|Keep a positive mindset
|Maintain a positive attitude throughout the redundancy process, stay motivated, and seek support from friends, family, or support groups.
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