Learn What to Do When Made Redundant (With Steps and Tips)

By Indeed Editorial Team

Published 25 October 2021

Redundancy may occur when a company no longer needs a certain position. Whether it's voluntary or due to organisational changes, redundancy is something you may experience. Knowing what to do when made redundant can help you transition from your current role into a new one. In this article, we look at the course of action you can take when an organisation makes your role redundant.

What to do when made redundant?

Learning what to do when made redundant can help you create a transition plan. The first thing to remember is that redundancy is not a reflection of your performance or the value you added to the company during your tenure. It's your job, and not you personally, that an organisation makes redundant. Redundancy may happen as organisations grow and introduce new technology or when an organisation works to improve efficiency. Here are some things you can do to make this process easier:

1. Leave the company on good terms

Despite how frustrated you may feel, try to stay professional throughout the process. You may want to maintain your professional relationships, considering they can be instrumental in helping you find a new job.

Be sure to leave the company on good terms and thank your employer for the opportunity to have worked with the company. While you may feel some frustration during this time, it's important to maintain a positive relationship with an old manager or employer. You may need a reference from them for future jobs. Also, consider maintaining relationships with your colleagues. This can help you develop a larger professional network.

2. Manage your finances well

During this process, you may receive a redundancy payout, and it's important to manage your changing finances. Even with a large redundancy payout, it's crucial to develop a budget that reflects your current situation. Consider depositing your redundancy payout into a savings account, where it can earn interest as you think about a productive way to use the money in the long term.

Online budgeting tools can be helpful in understanding your spending habits and knowing where to cut back. You may also consider speaking with a lender or finance professional to discuss your personal spending to find ways to refinance or save.

3. Maintain a positive mindset

A positive mindset can help make you resilient, improve your productivity and boost your self-confidence. The ability to accept change is a quality many prospective employers look for when hiring. There are many ways to maintain a positive mindset while taking care of your overall health. Consider taking outdoor walks, practising meditation and engaging in activities that make you happy. Also, consider talking to your loved ones about this change.

4. Know your rights

The conditions of employment often dictate the amount of redundancy payout offered. You may want to talk to your employer once they issue a redundancy notice, but it's a good idea to do some research beforehand. The Fair Work Act 2009 stipulates that you're entitled to redundancy payout if your employer terminates your contract because of insolvency, bankruptcy or their initiative. Consider enlisting the help of an employment and workplace lawyer to help you understand your redundancy rights.

Tips for finding a new job

Redundancy often presents an opportunity to re-evaluate your career goals and manage a work-life balance. Reassessing your skills and values can help you determine whether to continue working towards the same goals or forge a new career path. Consider talking to a career or personal development coach before you take action. Such a person may be able to see that you have skills that you have not used much before. They may also advise you about developing other skill sets. Here are some general tips you may follow to help you find a new role:

Consider temporary work

If you're in an industry with few employment opportunities or would like to explore your options, a temporary gig might be the answer. It might give you time to explore different options, add structure to your days and keep you motivated. Temporary assignments can also build your competencies. Plus, the money you earn from temporary jobs could also help your financial situation until you get another long-term role. Even voluntary work can give you something to look forward to doing and, sometimes, may even lead to developing new skills or getting a new job.

Related: Difference Between Temporary and Contract Work

Update your resume

Hiring managers want to see your resume, so take the time to update it. Keep in mind that while you can optimise your resume for specific roles, having a basic resume ready to go helps when opportunities arise. Ask your former employer and professional contacts for references and attach them to your resume. It's important to take copies of your professional qualifications with you when you go to see hiring managers.

Partner with recruitment experts

Returning to job hunting can feel overwhelming if you have been at your old job for a long time. Figuring out what skills you could upgrade or where to find new opportunities may be even more challenging. This is where a recruitment expert can be of assistance. They can help you identify areas of opportunity and explain what skills are in demand. If you're interested in doing something different from your old job, they may show you how to upgrade your skills with free online courses.

Use your network

When looking for a new position, consider using all the resources at your disposal. Reach out to your professional and social contacts. Inform your network that you're looking for a new job. A lot of people might be sympathetic to you and want to help you find work.

Enhance your interview skills

Job interviews are about making strong first impressions on potential employers. Take time to polish your interview skills. Practise your non-verbal communication skills like sitting up, making eye contact and answering questions. Learn how to respond to behavioural, situational and competency interview questions. Preparing some questions to ask the interviewer may also demonstrate why you're the best candidate for the job.

Related: How to Prepare for a Job Interview

Find opportunities to strengthen your skills

If you seek out opportunities to strengthen the weaknesses on your resume, this can make it easier to transition to a new role. There are many short and free courses online that can help you learn new skills and build your repertoire. Invest your time and money in professional courses from industry-approved training providers.

Address redundancy in future interviews

Unlike a job dismissal, being made redundant has to do with an organisation's changing needs and not your performance or skills. That said, it is essential to know how to address your redundancy during job interviews. Be honest and open about why the redundancy happened and highlight your successes in your former role. Make a positive comment about how being made redundant created an opportunity for you, and explain how you can add value to the company.

Related: How to Explain Your Reason for Leaving a Job During an Interview (With Examples)

Set a routine

To help you maintain your motivation, consider approaching this process as you would a job. Wake up at the usual time, get dressed and start your job search at the same time as you would normally go to work. Try to set daily objectives like researching a company or contacting a certain organisation. At the end of the day, reflect on what you did achieve.

Related: How to Find Work in Australia

What about voluntary redundancy?

If your organisation offers voluntary redundancy, consider your options carefully before leaving your job. Keep in mind that if you stay, your long-term job prospects within the company might not improve. Talk to a recruitment expert to find out what job opportunities are available. Update your resume and online profiles, consult with a recruiter, use the time to upskill and consider a temporary gig.

When discussing redundancy in a job interview, explain the circumstances and highlight your achievements with the organisation and how you want to build on those successes in your new job. Share how difficult it was to accept the voluntary redundancy and how, ultimately, you came to realise that it was an opportunity to reset and find a job where you can thrive. Shift the interviewer's focus by discussing how you can add value to the company in the new role.

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