Given recent developments in the job market, I felt that it is very important that I be prepared for everything. Especially, given the company that I work for right now and everything that’s happening around it.
Not just me, there are many others who are not sure about their future in the current job and don’t know really what’s going to happen to them tomorrow if they lose their jobs.
Well, not everything about holding on to your current job is totally in our control. Is it? It is certainly a bad thing to happen if you lose your job, especially if you are in India like me where losing your job is considered more like a bad omen. If it happens to you and you are in India, don’t get irritated if every random person shares his/her opinion and advises you on this topic and don’t be surprised if your distant aunt tells your mother to show your horoscope to some ‘famous’ pujari to check if your stars are right.
Uncontrollables aside, here’s a small list of things that you can do to make sure you are better prepared for the worst:
Make sure your resume is updated at least once in a month. Not every time you’ll have an update but each pass will optimize the contents and hopefully make it better. I don’t have to tell you how important this is for you to get back quickly on job hunt if you get laid-off.
2) Data backup
You spend ~10 hours a day on your work laptop/desktop. Apart from work related stuff that belongs to your company, a lot of your own data will also be there in that machine like Internet explorer favourites, study material, PDFs, training videos, study guides, bank statements, credit card details, scanned photos etc. You may not realize the importance of this digital part of yours now, but will certainly miss it when the laptop/desktop is taken away from you. Remember, if you get laid-off you many get as low as 10 minutes to pack your stuff and leave.
This is what you can do :
a) Use Windows Vista/Windows 7 backup feature to create a copy of all your personal data on to a USB hard-drive. I do this once in a month or so.
b) Live MESH (www.mesh.com) to synchronize select data across work and home PCs.
c) Keep the work laptop/desktop free of personal data as much as possible.
3) PF Account
Most of us hold more than 2 PF accounts, one for each company that we worked for till date. Go back and look at your old pay-slips to know your PF account number. Find out the status of each. Fill out necessary forms to withdraw the residual amount in all your old PF accounts. From my experience, do not try to transfer PF in to your new account, it has a high chance of failure. Better to get the money out of every account except your current PF account.
4) Credit Card due/Personal Loan EMIs
Very important to get on top of all this. How many credit cards do you have? What’s the total out-standing? When are the loans due for closure?
5) Company Car/Home Lease etc
Apart from the daily salary you get from your company, do you have any other obligations with your current company? Car-lease? Home-lease? You should know what happens to these contacts if you get laid-off. Especially the financial obligations upon termination.
Spend time here if you want to know current trends.
If you know more things that can be done to make job-loss a less bitter experience then feel free to add your comments below.