Worried about layoffs? 4 signs could be on the way

An exhausted person holding his hands clasped to his lips while sitting on the office floor.

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Is your company about to downsize? Here are some of the main warning signs to look out for.

the main points

  • Many people are worried that there will be a recession this year.
  • This could lead to more layoffs, so it’s important to know the signs.
  • If benefits are cut, hiring is frozen, and business travel or new projects aren’t approved, watch out.

We start 2023 with the US economy in a very strong place. The unemployment rate is low, and despite a series of tech layoffs during the latter part of 2022, it appears companies are still hiring.

But things could change during 2023, especially if the recession ends spectacularly. That’s why it’s important to recognize the warning signs of layoffs coming to your company. Here are four to look for.

1. Your employer takes back the benefits

It is common for companies to offer various perks, from health insurance to paid vacation to retirement plan contributions. But if you notice that the benefits you get seem stingier, or if some of them—like free coffee and snacks—go away entirely, it could be because your company is desperate to save money. And if you get to that point, a layoff could be next.

2. The employer will not agree to travel for the purpose of work

If you normally travel for work once every quarter and your company doesn’t seem willing to approve your next scheduled trip, it could be a sign that layoffs are on the way. Cutting back on spending is often an indication that a company is struggling financially.

3. Your company puts a hiring freeze on

A hiring freeze is not the same as a round of layoffs. In the latter scenario, the existing employees are let go. In the previous scenario, new employees are simply not brought in for a while. But still, if your company has been hiring on a regular basis and all of a sudden it hits on the practice, it could be a sign that money is getting tight. In this case, the employer may seek to further reduce costs by reducing the number of existing employees.

4. Your boss won’t approve of new projects

If you are used to taking new initiatives at work and are suddenly prevented from doing so, this may be a sign of trouble. After all, why would your manager want to approve a new project if he knew that half the people working on it might not have a job in a month or two?

Take action, but don’t panic

If you have reason to believe your company might carry out layoffs soon, try not to stress about it too much. After all, these marks aren’t guaranteed to translate into layoffs. And even if your company decides to cut back its staff, it doesn’t Will do Finally on the chopping block.

At the same time, it is good to act according to the above signs. First, boost your saving account balance. This way, if you lose your job, you will have more cash reserves to fall back on while looking for a new job.

Then, update your bio and start networking. You don’t have to start applying to jobs if you’re happy where you are. But it wouldn’t hurt to make yourself more visible and build more relationships within your industry in case you end up asking for a favor.

Finally, assess your job skills and try to reinforce skills that can use an elevator. Being great at what you do won’t automatically prevent you from being laid off if your company needs to cut costs. But a business owner may have a much harder time severing ties once they see how much value you bring to the table.

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