We all secretly fear redundancy. Losing a job can be pretty crushing and can set a person back by years. Most of the time redundancies will be expected in the workplace before the axe starts to fall. Co-workers begin to whisper in hushed tones that the company is looking for cutbacks and are looking at your department. Before you know it, p45 forms are being sent out and one has your name on it.
A redundancy package isn’t the same as getting fired though. There are strict procedures that employers have the obligation to follow to make it clear that those cutbacks ARE necessary and you, the employee, should have a reasonable explanation of why they are letting you go, and why the selection process they used is fair. A redundancy package also comes with around 30 days’ notice, so you’ll usually have at least a month to prepare yourself.
You should also expect some compensation for being let go. For a start, your employer will likely try to find you another alternative role in the organisation if there is one. You should also get some notice pay. If you’ve worked with the employer for over two years then you should also expect some redundancy pay too.
If all is fair, then the next step is dealing with it. It can be dizzying trying to find your feet after being made redundant so keeping that stiff upper lip is essential towards moving forward and finding the next phase in your working life. For many, redundancy can be the best thing that’s ever happened, acting as a stepping stone towards the ultimate job or career path.
For that to happen though, a strong spirit is needed. A redundancy may lead to something bigger and better, but the uncertainty of what comes next when you are made redundant can be unsettling and can cause some to withdraw. There’s no question that whatever it may lead to, redundancy can be difficult for everyone, setting in feelings of anxiety, panic and all-round general negativity. Picking yourself out of the funk is the next step in taking stock, assessing your situation and finding other opportunities.
Remember that hunting for your next job won’t be as hard as it was before. The set of skills and experience that your last position has given you will shine brightly on your Curriculum Vitae, and the fact that you were made redundant will not hinder your progress of finding your next position. Remember, you aren’t being fired, you’re being made redundant.
In the meantime, if you are struggling to find work and are currently unemployed, then don’t hesitate to look at state benefits such as jobseeker’s allowance or income support. You can receive this support by signing up at a local job centre, and you can also receive discounts on your council tax and other helpful titbits. It may seem a little dismal, but just see it as a phase of transition.
It might be useful to keep hold of that redundancy pay for the time being too. It’s tempting to blow it all on a self-indulgent holiday to soothe those blues, but it may come in handy while looking for your next job and frittering it away might not be the best of ideas, as much as it may feel like it.
Keep those spirits up and remember that redundancy happens to most of us at some point in our lives. No one is to blame for it and no bad feelings should be harboured towards the employer that handed you the p45. Keep your head up and move on!