Unemployed

When it comes to knowing what to do when you lose your job, UK workers can commonly find themselves at a bit of a loss.

The shock of losing your primary stream of income can upset the proverbial apple cart significantly, leaving you with quite the pulpy mess to clean up in the aftermath.

If you've been unfortunate enough to find yourself in that situation, don't throw the towel in just yet. There is light at the end of the tunnel...

 

"I've lost my job - what do I do?"

While you may feel like curling up under the covers and shutting yourself away from the world in the wake of losing your job, try to resist the temptation to withdraw into your shell.

It's unlikely you're going to find new employment while you're sat in your SpongeBob undies, eating cereal from the box and watching re-runs of Friends, so try to stay positive and be proactive.

Turn those hard times into a fresh start with these five easy steps to make your journey back to the top that much easier.

 

Get What You Pay For

Claiming unemployment benefits in the UK is a sensitive subject for many, bringing with it the unwarranted negative stigma that commonly surrounds them.

That being said, unemployment benefits are a right every UK citizen is entitled to and you shouldn't feel bad for getting something that your taxes pay for.

What's more, claiming benefits also allows the government to continue paying your National Insurance contributions during your time between jobs.

Depending on your circumstances, you will likely be eligible to apply for either Jobseeker's Allowance (JSA) or Universal Credit to help contribute towards your living costs.

You may also be able to apply for Support for Mortgage Interest (SMI), which comes in the form of a loan and helps pay towards the interest on your mortgage.

 

Budget Wisely

Most recruitment specialists agree that a typical job hunt will take around three months to complete, from the end of the previous employment to the start of the next.

Three months can be a long time to go without an income, particularly if you weren't given any kind severance or redundancy pay-out on your way out the door of your last job.

As such, the importance of budgeting during this time cannot be overstated. Cut back on unnecessary outgoings and try to streamline your spending to the bare minimum.

Paying for an unused gym membership? Cancel it ASAP. Eating out regularly? Brush up on those cooking skills. Smoking your way into debt? Ditch the cigarettes. Etc, etc, etc.

While it may be a shock to the system initially, switching up your living habits will go a long way in ensuring your finances stretch further.

 

Update Your CV

Now that your finances are relatively structured for the weeks ahead, it's time to focus on the task at hand - getting a new job.

Whether you had been in your last job for several years or a matter of months, updating your CV should be your first port of call.

Gaps in employment naturally raise questions with employers so be sure to add your latest working exploits to your working history.

A CV is essentially your own personal shop window for you to display your skills and experience for passing employers, so treat it as such.

Make sure it's presentable, well-constructed and don't waste space superfluously. Ensure it's loaded with key selling points unique to you.

When it comes to applying for specific roles, you may want to tailor your CV for individual jobs by highlighting key skills relevant to particular vacancies. The same applies to your cover letter.

Read the person specification carefully and include key terms and phrases mentioned in the job description. This will help you stand out as a suitable candidate that ticks the necessary boxes.

 

Secure References

During your job hunt, your quest for employment and, more specifically, the application process that comes along with it will likely include requests for professional references.

Depending on how you left your last job, you may want to include a trusted figure from your latest job as a referee. This provides any would-be employers with an up-to-date account of your skills from those that have worked with you most recently.

When choosing a referee, think about what kind of reference they may provide. A co-worker will be able to provide an accurate depiction of your character and work ethic, while a manager may be able to give a better reflection of your achievements and results.

 

Prepare for Interview

Inevitably, your job hunt will eventually call for you to attend an interview at some point down the line. As such, it pays to be prepared.

While the 21st century is more liberal than ever, presentation is still an important factor at interview, so dress to impress. An un-ironed band t-shirt and yesterday's jeans won't cut the mustard.

It's also worth getting your story straight with regards to your last job. The "why did you leave your last job?" question is a common, if not slightly awkward one, so prepare your narrative beforehand.

When you do secure an interview, be sure to do your homework on the company your interviewing for, as well as the role. Lack of preparation is a tell-tale sign of a nonchalant attitude, which is rarely an attribute desired by employers.

 

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Improve Employee Retention

It's been said that people don't quit companies, they quit their managers. Anyone that has ever had to work under a bad manager will know how accurate that statement can be.

In fact, poor management can ruin what is a dream job on paper and be a driving influence in a worker's decision to part ways with what is otherwise a good company to work for.

Luckily, there is a tonne of simple ways to boost morale, enhance job satisfaction and improve employee retention easily. All you need to do is implement them!

If you are in a managerial position with a team of staff under your watch, take a look at these employee retention tips and keep your workforce happy today.

 

Employee Retention Tips

To help get your staff on side, try incorporating these techniques into your managerial style and not only give your team reason to stay but also give them a reason to perform to the best of their abilities.

 

Hire the Right Person

Before you can go about working on retaining staff, you must first be sure that you have actually hired the right person for the job in question.

If you have taken onboard someone that is unsuitable for the vacancy, out of their depth for the tasks at hand or just plain not cut out for the position they have applied for, chances are that they won't be long for your working world.

Take time during the recruitment process to really assess and digest the credentials of each candidate, along with the motivation behind their application.

This will help separate those that really want it and those that have applied for the sake of it, ultimately leaving you with a motivated individual that wants the opportunity and is hungry and capable of performing.

 

Create a Relaxed Work Environment

Nobody wants to work in an uncomfortable environment where stress is commonplace, unrest is rife, politics are rampant.

As such, creating and nurturing a relaxed and harmonious atmosphere where people get along and workloads are achievable is paramount.

Aim to formulate a working culture where unity and teamwork are universal and a sense of company pride is strong.

Similarly, ensuring your office is well-lit and a comfortable temperature can also enhance the overall experience of daily work.

Combining these techniques will help create a positive environment that employees are happy to be in, where “Sunday night syndrome” is a thing of the past.

 

Encourage Self-Improvement

Employees often find added value in jobs where opportunities for personal and professional development are present and self-betterment is par for the course.

After all, nobody wants to feel as though they're stuck in a rut, spinning their wheels when it comes to their working life and the chance to progress can be a big difference-maker.

This could be through official external courses and qualifications training or simply offering lunchtime learning opportunities and inter-department skills sharing.

Meanwhile, self-improvement could also come in the form of promoting health and well-being at work, whether it's through workplace exercise programmes or therapy classes.

 

Listen and Learn

Listening to your employees is a fundamental ingredient in the day-to-day success of the working environment you have created.

Not only will it send the message to your staff that their opinions matter and are valid, but it will also provide you with unfiltered insight from those in the trenches.

Conduct regular reviews with your staff to ensure they're coping with well with the tasks and workload, taking time to ask for their feedback.

Providing your workforce with the opportunity to raise any concerns and provide suggestions not only boosts morale but can also help nip any issues in the bud before they get out of hand.

What's more, their comments may also influence your management decisions and help direct the business in a positive direction.

 

Recognition

Positive reinforcement should be a key area of any manager's daily playbook and is a sure-fire way to help ensure your staff remain motivated.

Nobody likes to feel like their contributions are overlooked and underappreciated, so take the time to recognise workers when a job is done well.

Whether you do so through a simple comment or email to show your appreciation or reward hard work through other means, like incentives and awards, a simple show of gratitude can go a long way.

Reminding your workforce that their hard work doesn't go by unnoticed can spur them on to continue to perform at a high level or, better still, perform at an even higher level.

After all, if your staff enjoy their job, they are unlikely to want to leave. Meanwhile, it's long been said that a happy worker is a productive worker, so it's in everyone's best interest to ensure that staff morale is high at all times.

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Job hunting

'Twas the build-up to Christmas and all 'cross the nation, jobseekers everywhere grow mad with frustration...

It's beginning to look a lot like Christmas throughout the UK, as houses glow bright with sparkly decorations and the airwaves once again become flooded with festive tunes.

With that, offices and workplaces around the country are also beginning to gear up for the holiday, as eager eyes focus on the well-deserved Christmas break on the impending horizon.

Unfortunately for job hunters, this joyous noel can result in a less joyous no-reply for job applications, as hiring trends and recruitment activities often get put on hold until the new year.

That being said, it's important to remember that, while Christmas is undoubtedly a time of giving, it's definitely not a time for giving up.

In fact, Christmas can be the perfect opportunity to get ahead of the January/February boom period...

 

Why Job Hunt Over Christmas?

As alluded to above, the new year is often the most popular time for recruitment as candidates and companies refocus their attention on finding work and finding workers respectively.

That being said, there's definitely a sizeable upside to job hunting at Christmas and numerous benefits to sending off job applications during the festive season.

 

Less Competition

While there may be less emphasis on hiring during the tail-end of the year, waiting for the January boom period to apply for vacancies can cause you to get lost in the shuffle.

Increased competition from other applicants also applying during the new year means that, by waiting until January, you are effectively increasing your chances of slipping by unnoticed.

Think of it as doing the weekly grocery shop during peak times on a Saturday. Congested aisles can lead you to miss some great deals and overlook some quality products - the same principle applies to recruitment.

 

More Vacancies

In addition to being a better time to apply in terms of getting a leg up on the competition, the Christmas period can also present an increase in the number of job vacancies as well.

It's not unusual for people leaving their jobs to finish up their roles in the run-up to Christmastime, as a means of extending their Christmas break. As a result, there can often be a spike in vacancies prior to the Christmas break.

Getting in early on these vacancies could prove fruitful as many jobs will include a condition on their job ad noting they reserve the right to close the ad early, should they find the right person for the job.

 

Budget Deadlines

 

For companies working with an annual budget, the end of the calendar year can often leave employers with a pot of change left over before the year is out.

In order to avoid budget cuts the following year, a "use it or lose it" mentality can take over and such businesses will move to spend their allotted hiring funds prior to New Year's Day.

Should the stars align, this enhanced focus on recruitment can be the perfect way to help you find your very own Christmas miracle in the form of securing a new job.

 

Temporary Work

Job hunting over Christmas doesn't always mean applying for the role of your dreams or the next logical step in your career development.

For some, finding a job can be as simple as finding ANY job, especially if such a search comes after an unfortunate lay-off or unforeseen restructure.

As such, it may be worth taking advantage of the numerous Christmas jobs available during this festive period.

While they may not present a comparable salary or an in-road to the next step on your career path, it will help you to cope financially.

Meanwhile, who's to say your Christmas job won't take a life of its own and develop into a career long after the festive season is over?

 

So, there you have it: don't just sit back and raise a glass this Christmastime; raise your game and put your job hunt into overdrive - it could pay off big!

For more information on job hunting at Christmas or to hear more job search advice, why not speak with one of our expert advisors today? Call now on 0203 225 5120 or get in touch online by clicking the button below.

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Finding attracting motivated applicants and qualified candidates in a cost-effective and timely manner is the dream scenario for any company looking to acquire new talent.

Sadly, ticking all of those boxes in one fell swoop is far more difficult than it seems on paper. Luckily, help is at hand and it comes to you right here, courtesy of those in the know!

 

best recruitment process

 

How to Achieve the Best Recruitment Process

To help you navigate the road to recruitment without any unnecessary detours, we've put together a list of helpful hints and tips to allow you to achieve the best recruitment process possible.

 

Identify Your Needs

Knowing what want is the key to achieving it, so it's important to have a good idea of what you're looking for before you get started.

Outside of the title your recruiting for, think what the role and responsibilities will entail – your ideal candidate will need to have these in droves.

Next, think about what additional qualities you would like your new acquisition to possess, along with any other ideal attributes.

The old adage of "if you don't ask, you don't get" rings true in recruitment and a structured person spec with essentials and desirables will help you bag the perfect applicant.

 

Advertising Route

There are a wide variety of avenues to go down when it comes to marketing your job vacancy, each with their own pros and cons, so it's worth considering which ways you want to explore.

Advertising your vacancy internally is going to be excellent in terms of time and money spent; however, it naturally excludes the world outside your office walls.

Meanwhile, some recruiters may favour sites like LinkedIn and Facebook, as their chosen method of job marketing. While this may seem logical in today's culture of social media, it doesn't always reach the chosen demo of those actively seeking employment.

Perhaps the best route is the most obvious: hitting the online job boards. Job sites are purpose-built to cater for job seekers and have a ready-made audience waiting for vacancies just like yours to crop up.

Similarly, if your job targets a specialism, you may want to approach an agency that caters specifically for that market of skilled professionals, much like HRS caters heavily to scientists and those within the industry of science.

 

Clear Criteria

When it comes to sifting through the applications, a tall stack of CVs can be a daunting task that's just as time-consuming.

In order to streamline what could be a lengthy process, go back to your initial job ad and remind yourself exactly what and who you are looking for.

Breezing by the person spec to remind yourself will give you a clear idea of the skills and experience your ideal applicant should possess.

Keep your checklist of criteria fresh in mind when going through the CVs to help you efficiently whittle down the field and arrive at your final shortlist of candidates.

 

Prepare for Interview

Just as you would expect a candidate to come to the interview fully-prepared, you too should take the very same approach.

An unprepared interview with very little direction achieves nothing for anyone and can create a bad first impression of your company to the interviewee. Have a solid idea of how you want the interview to progress with key questions and topics in mind.

Similarly, ensure all attendees are on the same page and clued up on what's what. Hauling an unprepped colleague into the meeting room last minute is a waste of everyone's time and can come back to haunt you.

Remember, the recruitment process works both ways. If the candidate doesn't feel your company is the right fit for them, they may not want to pursue the vacancy further even if they are offered the job.

 

For more recruitment advice and tips on achieving an efficient recruitment process, why not drop us a line today? Call now on 0203 225 5120 to speak with one our specialists or get in touch online using the button below.

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Many scientific jobs are based in laboratories, and even if you've experienced a lab environment in school or university, you might well wonder what it's like to actually work in a lab.

Working in a lab

Here are some of the best and worst things about working in a lab:

 

Lab equipment is expensive and delicate

In case you didn't already know, laboratory equipment tends to be pretty expensive. If you happen to be a bit on the clumsy side, you may find yourself racking up quite the replacement bill if you're not careful. Most science work requires concentration and precision, so take it easy if around the most delicate equipment if these aren't your strong points.

 

Your social life may have to take a back seat

When working in a lab, you commit yourself to the experiments you take on. Unfortunately, this can mean that your working hours become somewhat irregular, and other social activities have to be put on hold. Be prepared for your work schedule to be a bit changeable!

 

Your work can be dangerous

When you talk to your friends who maybe work within the construction industry or in factories, you may hear them say how dangerous their line of work is and how they could have an accident at any given time. When you work in a lab, the same thing applies to you! Working with infectious agents, caustic chemicals and electrified apparatus can put your health and safety in major danger, so be careful!

 

You actually have to dress like a scientist

You've most likely seen a load of lab work in movies or on TV, where the workers are dressed in long white coats with huge safety goggles protecting their faces. This is surprisingly true to real life - lab coats and goggles are part of the uniform, primarily because of the health and safety concerns mentioned above.

If you're looking for lab-based work, Hyper Recruitment Solutions can help you! Click the link below to browse the latest scientific from all over the UK!

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