Redundancy - Not a Dirty Word


Ever since the GFC of 2008 and the subsequent government guarantee provided to the banks, we saw a large increase in the market share across the Big 4 banks. Subsequently over the last 3 years we have continued to have a new record profit announced, without any doubt that it will be positive.

However, the situation with a potential GFC II is very different and essentially more complicated. This is obviously driven by a mix of different countries, cultures and economies trying to agree on a solution to writing down enormous amounts of debt. This is not debts by a corporate organisation or a bank (they can be told what to do) but by governments. As we know, one country does not like being told what to do by another!!

In the Euro zone confusion, we find that our banks need to focus on productivity and efficiencies to maintain the momentum. Given rising funding costs from around the globe and their respective clients being more cautious (and/or less competitive with a high $AUD) from a potential revenue perspective the time has come for our banks to focus on costs…..!!

Those costs, when it comes to banking are dominated by the salaries of employee’s. To reduce costs and essentially become more productive AND try their hardest to announce yet another record profit, they will be shedding head count.

We all know this, however sometimes I think it is good to remind everyone involved; it is not personal, but business. So, if you have been made redundant then keep this in mind and stay as positive as you can be.

The flip side to the individual, who is affected, is the employment market they will now enter. The good news is, anyone who is hiring understands this process and cycle, which leads me to the title of this article…..Redundancy: Not a Dirty Word. According to clients I speak with and other people in different sectors of the market, if you have been made redundant, do not be concerned with it becoming a personal blemish.

I can understand people being nervous about this perception of ‘why are you looking?’ But they shouldn’t be. 15 years on, since I began in recruitment the market has become much more savvy, people still have an eye for new talent (whether being made redundant or not) and they are not as judgemental (beside…whoever is hiring you lives in the same world and know they could be in the same boat some day).

If you are part of the ‘re-structure’ then apart from using any outplacement services provided, I’d suggest you do a number of things:

  • Start talking to people in your network including employees at other banks, clients and recruitment consultancies.
  • Start to get organised around your CV, Linkedin and social network profiles.
  • Establish a pattern of watching the media and scanning what is happening in the job market (using alerts on,, etc).
  • Relax, keep in touch with people and don’t panic! Just remain pro-active.
  • Finally, have a good think about every opportunity that is run by you and don’t dismiss it out of hand.