Whether it’s a move to a new company, a complete career change, or a company downsizing, transitions are tedious. Organizations must change to survive and thrive, which means that within our own professions, whether it’s for cause or through no fault of our own, we can sometimes fall victim to one of these job transitions.
It’s important to never take anything for granted and always be prepared. Below are tips on how to take action and survive job transitions.
· File for Unemployment – To file for unemployment benefits, you must be able to work, be available for work and be taking action to find work for each week which you claim unemployment. It is also beneficial to read the Kansas Department of Labor’s FAQ page located at www.getkansasbenefits.gov which explains what you must do to receive these benefits. Always keep an accurate record of your job contacts as you will periodically be required to supply a written record of these contacts to the unemployment contact center.
· Cover Letter and Resume – The cover letter provides an opportunity to inform the potential employer of reasons why you would make a good employee as well as indicate which position you are seeking. The resume is your first impression on a potential employer and is designed to sell your experience. Resumes should not include snapshots of yourself, salary history, reasons for leaving, flashy formatting, abbreviations, technical wording, but instead should include multiple ways to contact you, an objective on why you are applying for the position, work history/experience, education, references (available upon request) and qualifications. Including honors, activities and special skills is optional. Pick a standard black typeface on white or off-white quality paper for your resume. Focus on the results (numbers, ratios, percentages, and dollar signs) and accomplishments obtained with each employer.
· Thank You Letter – A thank you letter is a way to let the employer know you are still interested in the position (or to let them know that you are no longer interested), while at the same time saying, “Thank you for the interview.” Take advantage of this second chance to sell yourself. It is one more opportunity to tell the employer what you can do for their company, not what they can do for you. It gives you an opportunity to reiterate points you made during the interview and allows you make additional points you may have forgotten.
· Interviewing – The purpose of a job interview is twofold: It offers the employer valuable insight into your personality and abilities and it allows you the chance to discern whether your credentials and career goals match up with what the company seeks. To enhance your success at interviewing there are things you need to do before, during and after the interview: look sharp; be on time; do your research and be prepared; show enthusiasm; listen; give specific examples; ask questions and follow up. Keep in mind too little communication leaves interviewers exasperated, lack of focus can result in losing the interviewer; averting your eyes is one way to avert an offer; slang and street lingo need to be left on the street; and deception and little lies leave a big impression.
· Job Search – To maximize your job search, start by polishing your professional image. You can do this by creating a new email address that is professional and used solely for your job seeking efforts. Create a new voice mail message which portrays the same professionalism. Prepare for potential employers to call your references by ensuring you notify your references prior to submitting your resume or filling out an employment application. Utilize your local staffing offices as well as the job search engines: www.indeed.com; www.jobinventory.com; www.glassdoor.com; www.simplyhired.com; among following others. Visit the local library for access to newspapers which you may not currently subscribe to, in order to view the employment ads.
· Networking - Maximize your use of friends, relatives and acquaintances when looking for your next career. According to the 2016 Edition of What Color is Your Parachute, contacts have an increased effectiveness rate for getting a hiring interview and subsequently a job. Stay professional in your appearance and always have your resume available to hand out when networking.
· Tax Impact of Job Loss - The Internal Revenue Service (“IRS”) recognizes that the loss of a job may create new tax issues and has provided options to assist displaced workers. It is important to note that severance payments and unemployment compensation are taxable. In addition, generally, withdrawals from pension plans are taxable unless they are transferred to a qualified plan. Certain expenses incurred while looking for a new job may be deductible, as well as moving costs incurred because of a change in job location. The IRS provides additional assistance for displaced workers who are looking to start their own businesses.
For more tips on how to address job transitions, please call Creative Business Solutions at 785-233-7860. We would be pleased to assist you with your self-development or with any other HR issues your business or organization may be experiencing.
Source: Creative Business Solutions “Job Transition Packet” (2016).