Do you need to, or have you already made some employees redundant?
Redundancies are never easy. It doesn’t matter how high or far up you are on the corporate ladder, no one likes to break the bad news. COVID-19 made the process even more emotionally and mentally overwhelming. You are being pulled in different directions as a manager with a broad range of employees. Yes, your heart goes out for your team members, especially in these difficult times, but you also have a heavy responsibility to fulfil. You may have asked yourself the following,
“When meeting face to face has already been difficult, how could I even break the bad news? What about my remaining employees, how can I manage their stress and fears going forward?”
Unfortunately, a lot of advice regarding redundancy support services can be confusing or even misleading. This information is like junk food – packaged well and seemingly good. But at the end of the day, they are nothing more than fake news and click baits, some even pose harm to other people.
As a career and HR expert who has more than 20 years in the business, I have outlined the five most powerful ways to deal with redundant employees:
- Honesty is always the best policy.
You may be tempted to beat around the bush, but don’t fall into the trap of prolonging the agony. Before letting your employees go, you must be strategic in disseminating information. The best practice is telling people early that the management is going to cut back on manpower to secure the company’s long-term future. This allows people to build resilience and not be caught off guard by the sudden job termination.
- Give employees the facts
Transparency is key! Prepare your employee’s performance reviews beforehand and plan thoroughly. Give them a glimpse of the problems the company is facing and lay down all the redundancy pay and benefits that they will be getting. Treating your employees with dignity is still best practice. This step will not only save you money but will reduce Unfair Dismissal Claims through Fair Work as well.
- Make sure people are fairly selected
Before starting the laying off process, make sure you have created selection criteria for those employees at risk of redundancy. Factors to consider include skills, qualifications, performance, aptitude, disciplinary records, and customer feedback. Create a seamless process about how the redundancy selection was carried out and communicate them clearly to your employees.
- Support their next move with redundancy support and outplacement services.
Outplacement and redundancy support services can assist your exiting employees in navigating the grey waters of unemployment, so you can focus your time on securing your company growth instead. Professional career experts and recruiters will help your employees get a fresh start through personalised services including resume creation, cover letter writing, and career counselling. See, The Perfect Resume's Outplacement Services Package here.
- Don't forget those not directly affected
Remaining employees often feel guilty that they still have a job while their friends and colleagues are facing unemployment. They may also feel overwhelmed and stressed in taking more work in their colleague’s absence. The best way to deal with this and salvage your remaining employee’s morale is to create a safe space where they can vent out their fears, worries, and frustrations. There may even be someone within the company or a Learning and Development team who can act as an objective ear to organise, facilitate, and guide the group discussions.
As a long time veteran of the HR and recruitment industry, I have experienced both sides of the same coin. I’ve known what it felt like to be made redundant as an employee and also as a manager who oversaw a massive corporate downsizing. For me, the best way is to be honest and treat people with respect and dignity. Providing outplacement and unemployment support services, like The Perfect Resume's Outplacement Services is also crucial, as it can give your staff a lifeline in a sea of uncertainty. It can also save the company money in recruiting costs once the business growth is back on track because an engaged employee is more likely to want to be re-employed by the company. Whereas, if you leave on bad terms, you will lose the IP forever.
So, if you’re interested in learning more about how The Perfect Resume team can help you and your organisation navigate redundancy factors, let me know what your calendar looks like and feel free to send me an email firstname.lastname@example.org