What to Do If You Are Laid Off

Millions of Americans have been laid off as a result of the COVID-19 outbreak. 

Were you one of them?

Losing your job hurts – especially when it’s through no fault of your own. Right now, you may be experiencing a range of emotions. They’re all perfectly natural. Once the initial shock wears off, however, it’s time to ask yourself a critical question:

“Now what?”

With the right attitude, a clear plan and a healthy dose of persistence, you can quickly bounce back from a layoff – and find your next great employment opportunity:

What should you do if you’re laid off?

  1. Cool your jets.
    You may be angry at your former employer or anxious about the future of your career. But while those emotions may be justified, knee-jerk reactions aren’t in your best interest. Like it or not, the way you react to a layoff and spend your time between jobs speaks volumes about your character and your ability to handle adversity. Use the tips in this earlier post to make sure your actions send the right message to a potential employer – and set the stage for future success.

  2. Find out if the layoff is permanent.
    Many stores, restaurants and companies have put their staff on furlough – meaning their employees have been put on an unpaid leave of absence. If this is the case, you are technically still employed and may be called back to work once social distancing ends. Consider finding a
    temporary job to earn money during your furlough.

  3. Consult the U.S. Department of Labor’s (DOL) online resources for dislocated workers.
    Whether you’ve already been laid off or fear you may be soon, the DOL’s
    Employment and Training Administration (ETA) provides information on skill development/training programs and other services to help you through this difficult time:

    1. CareerOneStop: online resources for career exploration and planning, as well as training and job resources near you.
    2. MyNextMove.org: resources that help you answer the question: “What do you want to do for a living?”
    3. MySkills myFuture: a one-stop career website to help you find careers with skills similar to yours.

  4. Apply for unemployment.
    The DOL has issued new guidance to states regarding unemployment benefits during the pandemic, and the $2.2 trillion economic stimulus bill, passed on March 27, can boost your weekly benefits by hundreds of dollars. Visit your state’s unemployment website to check your eligibility and benefits and complete an application online.

  5. Reach out to your network. Your next job may be just one key introduction away:
    1. Update your social media profiles, so friends, former colleagues and hiring managers know you’re looking for work.
    2. Reach out to your alumni network and ask them to help you forge new professional relationships to broaden your reach.
    3. Set a goal for yourself to email three or four of your business contacts each day to reconnect and let them know you’re on the job hunt.

  6. Consider industries that may be hiring.
    While the coronavirus has had crippling effects on many industries, others are thriving. Look for jobs you may qualify for in healthcare, IT, collections, mortgage refinancing, service/maintenance and more. Do a little research online to discover opportunities in which you could apply your
    transferable job skills.

  7. Update your resume.
    Include all the key projects/accomplishments, measurable results and new job skills/soft skills you’ve acquired while in your most recent job. Consider switching your resume from a chronological to a functional or hybrid format. Here’s how to
    effectively address an employment gap in your resume, as well as in a job interview.

  8. Take care of yourself.
    Great employers want to hire great people who are happy, positive and confident. If you’re feeling defeated or depressed, take care! Use the tips in this post to reset your attitude and
    boost your spirits.

Out of Work?  Fear you may be soon?  

If you’ve been laid off – or think you may be soon, PrideStaff can help minimize or even prevent an employment gap with temporary assignments (in this post, we explain the advantages of working temp jobs while you conduct a job search).

With offices nationwide, we offer a wide range of temporary, temp-to-hire and other transitional opportunities that can keep you working while you search for your next full-time job.  Contact the PrideStaff office in your area to find out more about great local job opportunities.