When the Great Recession hit, we spent a lot of time helping job seekers secure their futures during uncertain times. We saw first-hand how workers and families in the Twin Cities were hit hard by the sudden loss of jobs and the need to find new work quickly.
Fortunately, the last few years have seen a good economy, especially in Minnesota. Still, it’s important to remember the lessons we learned last time. Here are some of the things that you can do now to stay prepared in case of another recession.
Grow your savings
The first thing you want to have in place in case of a sudden layoff is a strong emergency fund. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average length of unemployment is 9.3 weeks.
Financial experts suggest having three to six months’ worth of income in your savings. This should help you cover your mortgage/rent, food, utilities, and debt while you search for a new job. The money needs to be liquid, or easily accessible in a bank and not tied up in an investment like a house.
Be prepared for a job search
Most people use the saying “brush up your resume” when they hear about coming layoffs. But it’s a good practice to always keep your resume up to date.
Have a place where you’re tracking important work achievements so that you’re ready to add them to your resume when the time comes. Add new responsibilities or update your job title on LinkedIn as they happen. The last thing you want to do after a layoff is to try to remember what you were doing two years ago.
Keep your friends close
Networking is an important way to find new job opportunities and to receive recommendations. However, working on your network isn’t an activity that’s done only when you need a job. You’ll need to create genuine connections while you’re employed too.
Set a reminder to regularly connect with people in your network. Add coworkers, former coworkers, and classmates on LinkedIn. Send emails to people you haven’t heard from in a while to ask how they’re doing.
Develop new skills
Is there a skill that would make you a stronger candidate if you had to re-enter the job market? Perhaps you would have more opportunities if you had another certification or were fluent in another language.
If there’s something you’ve always wanted to learn, start working on that skill now while you have the support and income of your current job. You may even be able to get your current employer to help cover any costs.
Research staffing agencies
During the stress of a layoff, don’t get frazzled by trying to find new job opportunities and sending out applications to individual employers. Remove some of that stress by having a staffing agency on hand that you can turn to for help.
If you find yourself facing an unexpected job hunt, Award Staffing is here to help. Call us or visit one of our Twin Cities locations to learn more about how we can help you find your future.