Losing a job can leave you with a great deal of uncertainty. Whether it is sudden and unexpected or known in advance, it's never an easy experience. In recent times, a wave of job losses have impacted a large number of Australians with the unemployment rate currently sitting at 5.7%*
Losing a job can disrupt your daily life. It affects your career, finances, personal relationships, self image and confidence. Unemployment does not discriminate against the different class levels and can be experienced at any stage of your life.
*Source: Australian Business Statistics March 2009 Key Figures
Things to consider
Look after your health. Losing a job is one of the hardest experiences you will deal with in your career. Most people who have gone through this experience find it impacts their confidence and self esteem in the workplace. Take the time to deal with the situation and reach out to your family and friends to express how you feel.
The silver lining in this situation is that now you have a greater opportunity to find a role that will best suit your ambitions and goals. It's important to remember that a job loss can lead to a better chapter in your life.
The immediate reactions. Be aware of the immediate changes that may affect you. You will find particularly where it is an unexpected job loss, the immediate step to maintaining security would be to reduce spending and being more careful with your expenses. This can be a hard and frustrating process for you as well as your family.
Stay positive and remind yourself that this is a short to medium term solution. However it is important to plan and understand your cash flow and have a budget in place that you and your family can live with. Even though losing a job can be a hindrance to your finances, some simple planning around your spending and savings will ensure it doesn't lead to a financially crippling event.
Have a plan. Once you have done some soul searching about the job loss and where you are in your life, think about what you'd like to achieve from your professional life and put a plan together to achieve it. Be sure to keep a routine and continue to stay focused on the positives. Even though you don't head out to work every day, have a plan each day to dedicate time to work related activities such as getting your resume updated and searching for new roles. It's important to have work related activities in your daily routine so when the time comes to get back in to work you'll be able to make a seamless transition from being unemployed to employed again.
Take a minute to reflect. You're probably going to experience an entire host of emotions through this experience and it can be overwhelming. Take a minute and do something just for yourself. You may not know what lies ahead of you but use this as an opportunity to take charge and control of the course of your career.
Starting the search. Starting to search for a role can be a little bit like dating again just after a relationship, especially if you were in your last role for a long period of time. Keep your search going and make a proactive effort. Keep an updated and current resume, network and learn new skills that might provide you with a unique strength in your area of expertise or interest.
Severance package. The majority of employers offer a severance package to their employees when making their roles redundant or retrenched. A severance package may include, notice of termination or payment in lieu of the notice, wages for hours worked, payment for accrued annual leave and any accrued long service entitlements. If you are not familiar with matters such as the taxation treatments of the payment, be sure to seek professional advice to achieve the optimum outcome with the monies you receive.
Some helpful resources
Job Watch is an independent, not for profit, employment rights legal centre. It provides free confidential telephone information and referral service and other assistance to Victorian workers.
Australian Workplace provides job seekers, employees and employers with information about finding a job, starting work and workplace issues.
First30days is a site that assist individuals with life changes with hints and tools to get you through the first thirty days of different life changes.
Working Today is a dedicated site to assist you with queries or problem about work.
Seek is a career advertiser who also provide resources around resumes, interviews and even salary packages, hosting a large amount of tips/tools for career planning.
Call us on 0400 955 980 for an appointment to discuss how we can work towards your financial and lifestyle needs during this important stage in your life.