What To Do When You Get Laid Off

Last week, Central Illinois was stunned by the news that the Mistubishi production plant in Normal will be closing. According to a report by the Pantagraph, nearly 1,200 workers will be affected. Many will be laid off beginning in November.

Losing the region’s fifth-largest employer is a big hit to the local economy and affects us all at some level. But our hearts primarily go out to the Mitsubishi employees and their families. Layoffs can send anyone reeling. We hope as much as anyone that community leaders will find a buyer for the plant.

Manufacturing in Illinois is in decline, which means that Mitsubishi isn’t the only employer letting go of qualified workers. Chances are you know what getting laid off feels like or you know someone else who does. Here are some basic ways you can respond to the news if it happens to you:

  1. Do some self-reflection.

Take a deep breath. You will be okay. It’s a good time to reassess your life and career goals. Do you want to continue in the industry you’re in or are your skills transferrable to something else? Maybe it’s time to go back to school or get professional training.

  1. Update your resume.

Whether it has been a few months or a lot of years since you’ve done this, now is the time to polish it up. Get help if you need to, and be sure to verify your references and work history dates. Post your resume on online job recruiting sites. While you’re at it, update your LinkedIn profile, or create one.

  1. Visit the unemployment office.

Check to see if you qualify for benefits. The unemployment office can also help you access the resources you need to find a new job.

  1. Assess your personal finances.

Since you’ve done some self-reflection and have visited the unemployment office, you should have an idea of what your goals and income will be in the immediate future. Make a detailed budget and determine where you can cut back while your income is reduced. Consider putting major purchases on hold for a time.

  1. Visit a staffing agency.

One of your goals during this time is to put your professional information out there. Visiting an agency like Abbey Placements can also help you get a feel for what the labor market is like. We can give you some honest assessment about the availability of jobs you’re qualified for so you can better target your search.

Everyone wants to find a job quickly after a layoff, but sometimes it takes considerable time. If your unemployment is long term, try to stay positive and continue to pursue local resources for job seekers.