This is just my thoughts and opinions, I’m not telling anyone to think or feel any particular way – I just wanted to get these words out and hopefully help someone else out.
Yesterday, I made a very difficult decision to be made redundant. Simply put, hours had to be cut and certain shift patterns were set in place. The highest shift pattern was 10 hours less than what I am on now and once I’ve paid for travel, I would be earning peanuts. I am lucky enough that Steve works full time; some others I work with aren’t as lucky to have that to fall back on; however, I also had the problem that I need to be flexible for Jack and the set shift patterns didn’t leave much wriggle room.
The first thing I would suggest is don’t panic– obviously you are going to worry about redundancy; once the redundancy payout has gone, how are you meant to survive? I would suggest keeping a level head, don’t get emotional or in a flap and don’t badmouth the company, especially if there is a chance to keep your job (just at reduced hours). I haven’t necessarily seen this in my workplace but it is bound to happen somewhere.
Secondly, start looking for other jobs straight away. Even if you do take on the reduced shift pattern, your manager is going to wholeheartedly support you if you decide to keep an eye out for something with better hours – remember, the bad news isn’t coming from them but higher up.
Another point is don’t rely on your savings. Yes, they may get you out of a pickle now but they will soon run out too; be pro-active and try and do something about it all.
Look up what you are entitled to. If you cannot feasibly take on reduced hours (if these are even available) and do not find another job by the time of your redundancy, make sure you are already clued up on what benefits you are entitled to and when you can start claiming them – you won’t be able to claim until your redundancy money runs out – this doesn’t mean spend it all in one go, they expect you to be able to live on it for a month or two. Neither am I proclaiming that you should rely on benefits for the rest of your life – make sure to be actively looking for jobs but take comfort in the fact that you have something to fall back on.
Discuss it. Discuss all of your options with the most important people – discuss it with your partner/parents and you will obviously discuss it with your manager. Ask any questions you need and make sure you get your answers; if your manager doesn’t know, they will always find out for you.
As I mentioned above, these are just some of the things that I did when the threat of redundancy first loomed. After plenty of discussion and working out our budget, I realised that I could not feasibly carry on working there which is a shame as I love my colleagues, they’re a fab bunch! I will be looking for something closer to home, meaning no travel as I know my parents will still help me out when it comes to childcare. If all else fails, I shall stay a SAHM – I may have to start behaving a little more thriftily if it comes to that though…
What are your top tips for dealing with the threat of redundancy?