If you have recently been made redundant, you may feel as though you’re facing an uncertain future. Once the initial shock subsides and your thoughts turn to your next job search, you may also wonder how to best address your redundancy on your CV and in future job interviews.
Before going any further, it is important to recognise that there really is no stigma related to redundancy. Such decisions are made on commercial grounds and are never a personal reflection of you, your skills or your value. Indeed, many people have been through a redundancy – perhaps even your future manager – and employers are rarely sceptical of a candidate who has experienced a redundancy. You therefore shouldn’t feel at all ashamed or embarrassed about your redundancy or fear your career will be unable to ‘bounce back’.
Instead, try to look to your future with hope and optimism, however disappointed and disheartened you may feel in the short-term about your redundancy itself. Know that you can make a difference to an employer and your skills are valued.
With this in mind, here are some ways to acknowledge your redundancy as you search for a new role.
Nothing about being made redundant is your fault, so you shouldn’t feel embarrassed or ashamed if an interviewer brings it up. If you do feel nervous about being asked about it, prepare and practise your answer in advance, taking into account the below strategies.
Based on this, how do you think you might answer when an interviewer asks you about your redundancy? Hays Poland Director, Marc Burrage, gives a great example answer in his previous article on how a candidate may explain common CV gaps:
“My previous employer had to make a series of budget cuts, as a result of which, my role was made redundant. However, I’m proud of what I achieved in my previous position as a credit controller – for example, I built a new streamlined process in order to speed up customer credit checks that was subsequently adopted by the wider business.
“Since being made redundant, I’ve used my time out of the workplace to really think about what I want from my next role and have also been proactively keeping up-to-date with the latest developments in the industry.
“This role particularly caught my attention as I’m keen to find an opportunity where I can build on my existing skill set, manage a team, and really help drive the business forward.”
We are very sorry that you’re going through this turbulent career change right now. However, we would urge you to try your best to frame the experience as an opportunity for growth.
You can use this time out from the workplace to learn new skills or search for a job role or company that you would be much more passionate about. Or perhaps this is a chance for you to really review your career decisions to date, and consider the best strategy going forward?
All hiring managers and employers are going to understand your situation right now, so addressing it clearly and in a positive manner – both on your CV and in an interview – will do nothing to damage your chances in a new role. In fact, many employers appreciate a candidate who is immediately available and does not have a notice period to work – to name just one benefit of your redundancy for potential employers.
Keep focusing on those positives in your life and career – because there are plenty of them. Try to apply a growth mindset to your situation, as you will learn a lot from this experience – even if you can’t see it right now. Good luck.
Jane McNeill joined Hays in 1987 as a graduate trainee in their London head office after graduating with an MA (Hons) in Psychology from Edinburgh University. She began her career recruiting accountancy & finance professionals, before spending 11 years recruiting senior permanent professionals for London’s banking & finance sector. During this time she quickly progressed through management roles and in 1992 she was appointed Director after leading the London city business to a phenomenal post-recession recovery.
Jane transferred to Perth, Western Australia, in 2001. Over the next decade she grew Hays’ business in that state from a team of 15 to nearly 250 staff. She also established and managed Hays’ banking & financial services business.
She was appointed to the Hays Australia & New Zealand management board in 2007. Now based in Sydney, Jane oversees Hays’ operations in both NSW and WA. She is responsible for 400 staff located in two states that are separated by a five-hour flight and a three-hour time difference. At the same time, she retains her keen interest and passion in banking & financial services recruitment by adding national responsibility for Hays Banking and Hays Insurance to her remit.
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