How To Prepare For A Potential Layoff

By Ashley Paskill on July 6, 2023

No matter where you work, there is always the possibility of being laid off. Before it happens, you will likely hear rumors about it around your workplace. This can be a scary time, especially since you rely on your income for college or living expenses. However, there are things you can do to help you prepare for if and when the layoffs happen.

Update your resume

This time is the perfect time to update your resume. You will need to look for a new job if you are laid off, so getting a head start by polishing your resume ahead of time will help alleviate stress and will save you time. Think about what kind of job you want to do when you get laid off and tailor your resume to fit that position. Highlight achievements from your current and previous employment and check for any grammar and content mistakes. Read job descriptions for jobs you are looking for and incorporate keywords into your resume to help it stand out to future employers. Have the career center at your school help you look it over to make sure the formatting, grammar, and content are correct and things are as thorough as they can be.


Networking is a great way to meet new people and gain possible job prospects. Even if you do not end up getting laid off, these connections can help down the line. Try to find local networking events or even consider networking sites like LinkedIn. Networking can be intimidating, especially for introverts, but people are generally willing to help you and give advice for your field. If you already have a solid network of people who are in your career field, consider reaching out to them for advice on how to move forward in the event that you are laid off. If you do not have a LinkedIn account or have never networked before, now is a great time to get started!

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Focus on the facts

You may be worried and upset about the rumors about the possibility of a layoff if there are rumors going around the workplace. However, it is essential to focus on the things you do know and the facts that are certain. You may not know all of the details yet or even if you are going to be a part of the layoffs. While it is good to prepare just in case, it is essential to not worry too much until you are certain that you actually need to be concerned. Focus on what you can control and the facts you are aware of. Most importantly, try your best to not be part of spreading potential rumors as this could get you in trouble. If you are not sure if layoffs are even happening, wait to take action until you have more information.

Look over paperwork

If you are, in fact, being laid off, you will likely receive paperwork with all of the information you need on it. This includes your last day, information about your benefits, and your severance package. Look this information over and prepare any questions you have for your boss. In many cases, you may even be able to negotiate your benefits and severance package to get more and extend your benefits until you are able to find a replacement for them. Once you know what your benefits are and you have access to them, be sure to take full advantage of them to aid you in your next job, whether that means working for the same company or moving to a new work environment.

This is also a time to see if you qualify for your state’s unemployment benefits. You may be eligible to apply if you are laid off, so be sure to apply if you are able to. If you are unsure if you are getting laid off, do basic research into the unemployment benefits process and start getting any identification and paperwork you may need. Even if you do not have the official layoff paperwork from your company yet, you may need other pieces of information.

Set aside savings

You likely have some time before you are laid off, especially if you are not sure if layoffs are even going to happen. Now is the perfect time to put savings money aside just in case. Begin managing your spending and figuring out places where you can cut back a bit. Put this additional money into savings now so that if you are laid off, you have a little bit of a cushion until you can get another income and get back on your feet. This will help the thought of being laid off be a little less stressful for you and your loved ones.

The thought of being laid off can be stressful and scary since it means potentially losing income and benefits. Taking action steps to be as prepared as possible can help ease your concerns, even just a little bit.

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