Financial Tips for the Recently Unemployed

A growing number of unemployed

So you’re out of a job. In today’s economy, that’s sadly more common than it used to be: The unemployment rate for January 2010 was 9.7 percent. Although some economists are predicting that the end of the slump might soon be in sight, a lot of people aren’t out of the woods yet. However, if you find yourself suddenly let go by your employer, don’t panic. Even though you won’t have a regular pay day any more (meaning no more payday loans), you will still be able to weather the storm if you follow a few simple steps.

Request unemployment benefits

First, immediately request unemployment benefits. If you didn’t do it when you were terminated, do it now. If you were let go for economic or similar reasons — basically, through no fault of your own — you should be able to collect unemployment. The funds are there for people in your situation, and it’s foolish not to take advantage of a program that can help you stay afloat while you begin the process of looking for a new job.

The power of networking

Next, get the word out. “It’s not what you know, it’s who you know,” goes the saying, and there’s a lot of truth to that. Obviously, your skill and experience are what will ultimately get you your next job, but the best way to find that job is through savvy networking. Get in touch with your friends and former coworkers and let them know that you’re actively and aggressively looking for work. Send out feelers via online networks like Facebook and Twitter. Do everything you can to let people know that you’re on the job hunt, and that includes being willing to chat about any freelance or outside-the-box opportunities that might be available. You never know where a job, however brief, might lead. This is time to lean on your professional and personal relationships.

Keep a positive mindset

Finally, get proactive. Being laid off can feel like a personal rejection (“Did they not like me?”) as well as a professional one (“Did I not work hard enough?”). But the reality of the situation is that economic forces beyond your control are the main cause of unemployment these days. It happens all the time. I was laid off last year, and though I reeled for the first few days, I realized that the best defense really is a good offense. If you’re out of a job, you need to take action. Update your resume and set up accounts with job-hunting Web sites like Monster and Career Builder. Be relentless in your search and request jobs every day. For the unemployed, looking for work is a job, one to which you need to devote your entire range of resources. It can be tough to stay positive, but the best way to move on from your setback is to put your energy into finding new work. Losing your job can be devastating, but how you handle it will determine your next position. Stay strong and keep looking.


This guest post is contributed by Raine Parker, who writes on the topics of accounting degree online .  She welcomes your comments at her email Id: