Being made redundant? What to do when made redundant 😨

Copied to clipboard

Being made redundant brings many pressures and worries, it can cause financial strains, and take a toll on your mental health and well-being.

It’s a stressful and worrying time and often many of us aren’t taught about how to deal with redundancy and what to do when made redundant.

However, redundancies are a fact of life in the modern workplace, and whilst it’s something none of us wish to experience, it may occur at some point during your career.

We’ve put together our top tips for how to cope with redundancy, which will allow you to move on from whatever stage of your redundancy grief cycle you’re in and set you up to have a positive outlook towards your future career.

What is being made redundant?

If you’ve recently been made redundant or hear the word float around the office but are unsure what being made redundant actually means, here’s redundancy explained.


Redundancy is when an employer reduces their workforce as a job or jobs are no longer needed. There are many reasons why you might be made redundant, and usually these aren’t a reflection on your ability to do a job. Some of the most common reasons are, the job you were hired for no longer exists, the company is struggling and an employer needs to cut costs by reducing employees, or technology has made your job unnecessary.

Read more about the advantages and disadvantages of technological advances in the workplace and if robots will take your job.

Whatever reason you’ve been made redundant, it’s important to know your rights, have a plan of action and maintain a positive mindset.

Read below our top redundancy tips.

Redundancy grief cycle

Whilst everyone will deal with being made redundant in their own way, there are a few common stages of redundancy people experience.

Here’s an example cycle of the different stages you may find yourself going through when made redundant.

Implement our below tips to help yourself pass whatever stage you’re going through and reach positive vibes!

Read our guide to staying positive when unemployed.

Grief cycle

  1. Denial
  2. Anger
  3. Bargaining
  4. Depression
  5. Acceptance
  6. Positive vibes
Stages of grief-min

“I got made redundant, what should I do?”

  • Although it’s easy to feel remorse towards an employer after they have made you redundant, it’s important to act in a civil manner and leave on good terms with your employer and other colleagues.

    There are often many reasons for redundancy, and while it can feel like a personal decision against you, there are often many reasons employers have to let employees go that are out of their control.

    When leaving, be sure to thank your employer for the opportunity, even if you disagree over the manner of your exit, you will still need a reference for them for future jobs.

    Stay connected with your colleagues on LinkedIn, you never know a new career path may come from one of their connections, so keeping relationships is important.

    LinkedIn profile need a boost? Check out our 8 simple ways to boost your LinkedIn profile.

  • An important part of what to do when being made redundant is knowing your rights and what you are entitled to claim.

    If you’re wondering, about being made redundant, ‘can I claim benefits?’ here are some of the redundancy benefits offered by employers.

    You should check with your employer if they have a contractual redundancy policy, and if they do, ensure they are following it.

    This is important as a contractual redundancy policy entitles your employer to follow a detailed redundancy process including redundancy pay and redundancy pay tax.

    • What redundancy pay UK is available and what am I entitled to?

    Redundancy pay is an after redundancy employment benefit employees are offered by an employer. To be entitled to this pay you need to have worked continuously for an employer for at least two years or have a fixed-term contract of two years or more that expires and is not renewed because of redundancy. For others not covered by this, you are eligible to notice period money and any holiday pay you’re owed.

    Statutory redundancy day and contractual redundancy pay are the two main types of redundancy pay, here’s more about each.

    • Statutory redundancy pay

    Statutory redundancy pay is redundancy pay that all employers have to pay by law, if you classify for redundancy pay. You shouldn’t have to claim this redundancy pay from your employer, it should be automatically paid the same way your wages are. If your employer fails to do this, put the request in writing and if they don’t after this you may need to take them to an Employment Tribunal.

    • Statutory redundancy pay calculator

    How much statutory redundancy pay you’re entitled to depends on how long you’ve worked for your employer, how old you are and how much you earn a week. The redundancy pay limit is capped at £430.

    Here’s how to calculate how much you’re owed:

    • Half a week’s pay for each full year of service where you were under 22
    • 1 week’s pay for each full year of service where you were older than 22 but under 41
    • 1.5 week’s pay for each full year of service where your age was 41 or above
    • The maximum number of years that can be taken into account is 20 years
    • Contractual redundancy pay

    Contractual redundancy pay is an additional payment that is only entitled to employees if it is stated in your employment contract. If you receive this, you should still receive the full statutory redundancy pay as well.

    • Is my redundancy an unfair dismissal?

    It’s important to know that you weren’t made redundant for an unfair reason. Under the Employment Rights Act (1996) you have the right to ask your employer to provide a written statement of the reasons for your dismissal within 14 days. Find out more about which particular reasons a tribunal is likely to find justifiable for an unfair dismissal.

    If a Tribunal finds you have been unfairly dismissed, they may order your employer to reinstate you and give you back your job, re-engage you in a different job or pay compensation. It’s important to know all your rights regarding redundancy, so you are treated fairly and are entitled to the benefits you have earned.

  • It’s important to use the time you’re in between jobs wisely. Don’t feel rushed into applying to every new job that comes your way, but think about what you’ve enjoyed about the previous positions you’ve held, and what job you would like to hold next. Reach out to colleagues and connections in the industry you’re interested in for guidance and advice, which may help identify new employers to contact.

    Whilst financial strains and pressures may be playing on your mind, it’s important to apply to jobs you’re really interested in and passionate about – openness to new job avenues is also important. For instance, if you are passionate about data analysis with previous experience in finance, why not consider jobs in economics?  If you find yourself struggling to figure out what job is right for you, take our career test quiz for graduates!

    Job hunting can be overwhelming and daunting to take on by yourself, registering with a recruitment agency is a great way to help with any job queries you have and support you with your applications.

    Check out our blog for tips on how to approach and sign up for a recruitment agency. At Give a Grad a Go, our industry expert recruiters offer personalised career advice and will help you every step of the way with your graduate job applications – register with us today!

    Another great source for job hunting support is job centre redundancy support. Contact your local Job Centre and ask for their Rapid Response Service, they specialise in helping people who have been made redundant. You can use this service for up to 13 weeks after you’ve been made redundant.

  • Before you begin applying to jobs, it’s important to sell yourself in the best way possible to ensure your applications stand out against the competition. One of the benefits to being made redundant, is the time you have, if you’ve been putting off editing your CV for a while, usefully use this time to boost your CV.

    Check out our Student and Graduate CV Hub for free CV templates to download, along with CV advice and examples for a range of graduate roles, or visit our Interview Questions Hub for answers to the most common interview questions.

    Another great way to boost your employability is enhancing your skill-set, whether it’s taking an online course in the field you’re interested in, taking up a new hobby or volunteering, there are many ways you can learn new skills which are great to list on your CV will impress an employer. Find out more about how volunteering can boost your employability.

  • Being made redundant is tough, and it can be hard to come to terms with losing a job, especially if it’s one you loved. However, it’s important to think positively and make the most out of the situation, see this challenge as an opportunity to move your career forward and realign it with your life goals and what drives you. Many people find that in the long run redundancy is actually the catalyst they need to take their career in the direction they want to go.

Once you’ve found an industry and a sector you’re interested in, begin applying for jobs.

Give a Grad a Go take pride in being the UK’s leading graduate recruitment experts, take a look at our easy job application process and begin applying to graduate jobs today! 

Was this post useful?