10 steps for dealing with redundancy and beyond

Knowing what to do after being made redundant can help make the experience that bit more manageable. It can also help you get your career back on track sooner rather than later. Here, we share 10 steps for dealing with redundancy and beyond…

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Redundancy can happen to us all. Even if you see it coming, it can still be a shock when it happens. It can leave you feeling angry, shocked, embarrassed and guilty. You may also feel you’ve been unfairly treated. 

Knowing what to do after losing your job can help make being out of work that bit more manageable. It can also help you get your career back on track sooner rather than later. The 10 steps below are designed to help make sure you tick both of these boxes: 

1. take time to come to terms with the situation 

Being made redundant can come as a huge surprise. Give yourself plenty of time to reflect on and understand what’s happened and how you feel about the situation. Be kind to yourself - acknowledge if you are feeling stressed and if you need some emotional support

2. maintain the right mindset 

Being gracious about your redundancy, especially if you believe it shouldn’t have happened, may be difficult, particularly in those early days. However, it’s important you don’t take it personally and you do remain professional throughout. Exit gracefully and maintain a positive mindset as much as you possibly can. 

3. be clear on your entitlements   

While taking stock of the situation, it’s also important you use the time to understand your rights and what you are entitled to. Being clear on your redundancy package and contract etc. will enable you to stay in control and take informed actions. 

Our legal support service  is on hand to help. Meanwhile, you can use this online tool to calculate your statutory redundancy pay. 

4. manage your finances 

Be proactive about taking stock of your finances and creating a budget. Having a clear idea of your incomings and outgoings makes it much easier to make rational financial decisions. 

Also, don’t be afraid to reach out for help. There are many support services in place for people who are experiencing financial difficulties. We offer a range of financial services to our members and families, including financial assistance, debt management advice and benefits counselling. 

5. share what’s happening  

Telling people you’ve been made redundant may be the last thing you want to do because you feel embarrassed, but talking about the situation and your feelings will make things more manageable. 

Talking to others will also help you rebuild your confidence. If you have friends and family around you, let them in and allow them to support you – it doesn’t have to be forever. 

6. map your goals  

As the saying goes, ‘when one door closes, another opens’, which is precisely what can happen if you’ve been made redundant. 

Use the downtime to reassess what’s important for your work and home life. Have you got the right work-life balance or is there room for improvement? Or perhaps you fancy a career change? If you aren’t sure what to do next, our career coaches can help you determine what that next step could be. 

7. establish a new routine 

Sticking to a daily routine will help you stay focused. Get up as if you’re going to work, get dressed and concentrate on finding a new job. Having some structure to your day will help you stay positive and enable you to keep track of what you've done today and what you need to do tomorrow.

8. search for your next job 

There’s no time like the present to look for opportunities, which can keep you going and help you feel positive about getting back to work again. At the same, prepare your ‘recruitment toolkit’ – your CV, cover letter and interview notes, which you’ll definitely need at some point, so best to perfect them now. 

9. get networking  

Put your redundancy downtime to good use by taking part in networking sessions (in-person or online) where you can make valuable new contacts, find out about opportunities and get noticed by potential employers. Reach out to people via LinkedIn and use your profile to really expand your network. 

10. look after yourself  

By this, we mean keep tabs on your mental wellbeing and give yourself a break if you are feeling stressed or deflated by your current situation. You won’t always be in this situation, and you will go on to get another job (if that’s what you want to do). Things will get better. Exercising regularly, eating healthily, listening to music and taking time out, are just some of the coping mechanisms you can implement along the way.  

It can feel like the end of the world when you’re made redundant, but having a clear plan of action for what you are going to do next, can really help you turn the situation around. 

Tune into your thoughts and feelings, focus on what your next step is and how you are going to manage in the interim and, more importantly, don’t forget to get help from others. Simply just talking to your friends and family can make a crucial difference. And there are so many professional groups, experts and sources of support (financial and practical) out there, all on hand to help you bounce back from redundancy and on to the next chapter in your life. 

Now that you’re here, we think you may find this article useful, ‘How to bounce back from redundancy & build your self-confidence.’

how caba can help 

Legal assistance

If you think you’ve been treated unfairly by your employer and want to know more about your rights around employment and dismissal, our legal help line can help you.  

Financial support

Redundancy is not only just a burden emotionally. It takes a huge strain on our financial health and stability. If you’re worried about how you might cope financially, we have a range of financial support that you might be eligible for.


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your questions answered 

Who is eligible for support?

We support past and present members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England and Wales (ICAEW), ACA students, ICAEW staff members, and the family and carers of members and students. 

  1. No matter where your career takes you, past and present members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of England Wales (ICAEW) are eligible for caba’s services for life, even if you change your career and leave accountancy 
  2. ACA students (ICAEW Provisional Members) who are either an active student or have been an active student within the last three years are eligible for caba's services 
  3. Past and present staff members of the ICAEW or caba are eligible for caba's services for life, even if you leave either organisation. Please note, for former employees, our financial support is only available to those who have had five years continuous employment with either organisation 
  4. Family members and carers of either an eligible past or present ICAEW member, ACA student or past or present employee of the ICAEW or caba are eligible for caba's support. We define a family member as a: 
    1. spouse, civil partner or cohabiting partner 
    2. widow, widower or surviving civil partner who has not remarried or cohabiting with a partner 
    3. divorced spouse or civil partner who has not remarried or cohabiting with a partner 
    4. child aged up to 25. Please note, children aged between 16 and 25 are not eligible for individual financial support 
    5. any other person who is dependent on the eligible individual supporting them financially or are reliant on the eligible individual’s care 
    6. any other person on whom the eligible individual is reliant, either financially or for care 

You can find out more about our available support both in the UK and around the world on our support we offer  page. 

Are your services means-tested?

If you need financial support, we carry out a means test where we consider income, expenditure, capital and assets.  

*Please note none of our other services are means-tested. 

I’m an accountant, but not a member of ICAEW, can you still help?

Unfortunately not. We only support past and present ICAEW members, their carers and their families. If we are unable to support you, where possible we will point you to help elsewhere.

caba has supported me in the past; can I receive support from caba again?

We understand that circumstances change. If we’ve helped you in the past there’s no reason why we can’t help you again. You can contact us at any time. Please call us if you need our help.

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