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25 Essential Steps If You Are Part of the Tech Layoffs

Planning the way forward

If you have recently been laid off or are worried about being laid off from your job in the technology industry, you are not alone.

Many technology companies face diminishing consumer demand, leading to declining revenue and pressure to streamline operations.

According to recent financial news published by layoffs.fyi, over 235,000 tech employees from over 1,000 tech companies have been laid off as of September 2023.  

Certainly, these are the biggest tech layoffs reported in years. Moreover, many more companies are expected to downsize as an economic recession looms.

While job loss can be a trying time, it can also be an opportunity for growth, resilience, and financial reinvention.

So, whether you have recently been part of a tech company layoff or are preparing for a possible workforce reduction, read on to explore 25 crucial steps to prepare for a secure and prosperous future.


1. Get Organized

Losing your job can be overwhelming.

Often, people need to figure out where to start once they have received the news. Getting organized is the first vital step in clearing a path to success amid a sudden change or stressful situation.  

Getting organized is your lifeline. It clears mental clutter, streamlines your job search, and ensures you take advantage of significant opportunities.

A structured approach empowers you to conquer challenges and rebuild with confidence:

  • Begin by decluttering your physical space.
  • Create a dedicated workspace for job searching and focused work.
  • Utilize digital tools to manage tasks, appointments, and financial records.
  • Keep a journal or notebook to capture all your important thoughts and action items.

This type of organization empowers clarity and action.

Give Yourself a Financial Checkup 

The next critical area for you to address is your financial situation. As your primary source of income has been interrupted, it is vital to assess your present financial condition.

2. Quantify Savings:

The first step in this process is determining how much money you have in your bank accounts, including any emergency funds. This initial assessment will help you determine your financial runway and how urgently you need to secure new income sources.

3. Review Debts:

Next, list each of your outstanding debt balances, including:

  • loans,
  • credit cards,
  • mortgages.
  • student loans,
  • car loans, and
  • any other debts you may have.

Take note of the interest rates on each and the required minimum monthly payments. This exercise will allow you to prioritize which debts to tackle first and whether consolidation or refinancing options are available to lower your interest costs.

4. Determine Expenses:

Once you have quantified your debts, identify your expenses to create a clear financial picture.

An easy way to do this is to review your bank statements for the last several months. Categorize each expense based on whether it is an essential or discretionary expense:

  • Essential expenses include, but are not limited to, rent, utilities, groceries, and insurance. These are the expenses that you must pay.
  • Discretionary expenses include dining out, entertainment, and non-essential subscriptions. These are the expenses that are easiest to cut back.

Understanding where you spend money will help you identify where to cut back to free up cash to save or pay down debts.

5. Check Insurance Coverage:

Next, ensure adequate health, life, and disability insurance coverage while unemployed.

Losing your job may mean that you lose access to employer-provided insurance. You may need to explore options like COBRA or other individual insurance policies.

However, additional or replacement coverage will likely result in incremental costs that you should add to your list of expenses.

6. Evaluate Investments:

Finally, review your investment portfolio. Assess your risk tolerance, investment goals, and portfolio composition, considering your current period of unemployment.

By thoroughly assessing your cash outflows through these steps, you’ll understand your financial situation more clearly. The resulting knowledge will be the foundation for subsequent actions to optimize your finances during unemployment.

Remember, staying organized and proactive is crucial to making informed financial decisions and setting yourself on a path to financial resilience.

Create a Financial Action Plan

Once you have assessed your financial situation, you must create a plan for moving forward.

7. Set Clear Goals:

Start by defining your short and long-term financial goals.

Brainstorm about what you want to achieve. Are you looking just to cut back expenses, or are there bigger goals you want to tackle?

Whatever your goals, write them down, ensuring they are SMART:

  • Specific,
  • Measurable,
  • Attainable,
  • Relevant, and
  • Time bound.

Knowing what you’re working toward will help you stay motivated.

8. Develop a Spending Plan:

Next, create a realistic spending plan to budget your income and expenses. This plan is essential for keeping your finances on target.

  • Start by listing all your sources of income, including unemployment benefits and income from part-time work.
  • Then, plan your monthly expenses.
  • Allocate a portion of your income to essential expenses (housing, utilities, groceries).
  • Next, budget funds to meet any debt obligations.
  • Finally, set limits for discretionary spending.

Budgeting tools can simplify this process and help you track your spending in real-time.

9. Optimize Your Emergency Fund:

An emergency fund provides a financial safety net for job loss or unexpected expenses, like medical bills or car repairs.

The best time to establish an emergency fund was before you got laid off. The second-best time to establish this fund is today. If you still need to create an emergency fund, make this a priority as soon as possible.

  • Target three to six months of living expenses to start.
  • Establish a stretch goal of saving twelve months of expenses over time.
  • Use small automatic transfers to your savings account to see consistent progress.

As you work through your budget, it will become clear how much cash you will need while unemployed.

If you have a robust emergency fund, you will hopefully not have to dip into your long-term savings or sell investments to stay afloat.  

If you can keep your expenses low, you can add to your emergency fund during this time.

Be sure to replenish your emergency funds once you are back in employment.

10. Establish a Debt Management Strategy:

If you have the financial resources, develop a plan to prioritize and pay down any debts.

Your strategy should be realistic based on your established spending plan. One popular method for efficiently retiring your debt is the Snowball Method:

  • List all your debts in ascending order from largest to smallest, regardless of interest rate.
  • Pay the minimum balance on all but the smallest debt.
  • Pay as much as you can afford for the smallest debt over the minimum payment.
  • Ensure this payment is a consistent amount that you are committed to.
  • Once you pay off the smallest debt, apply all the money you were paying on the smallest debt as additional funds over the minimum payment on the next smallest debt.
  • Continue applying the increasing amounts on subsequent debts until you have retired them all.

This approach provides quick wins and motivates you to tackle more significant debts.

11. Invest Wisely:

If you have investments, assess your strategy.

Consider rebalancing your asset allocation or pausing new contributions to align with your current circumstances:

  • Adjust your investment strategy to fit your financial situation and timeline.
  • Consult a financial advisor to understand potential tax implications if you consider early retirement account withdrawals.

Manage Your Cash Flow

Once you have created your financial plan, look to outperform by optimizing your cash flow.

12. Cut Unnecessary Expenses:

The easiest way to increase your cash flow is by reducing your expenses. Once you understand where the money is going, it will be easy to cut back.

  • Start by cutting back on dining out and expensive entertainment.
  • Instead, embrace meals at home with family and friends.
  • Next, eliminate unnecessary subscriptions. Do you need all your streaming services, gym memberships, or magazine subscriptions?
  • Finally, cancel or suspend any other services you can temporarily live without.

Once you are back on your feet, you can reassess your priorities or continue to choose more frugal options.

13. Tax Planning:

Taxes can make up a large portion of your overall costs, so optimizing your strategy to minimize tax liability is essential.

  • Familiarize yourself with tax deductions and credits that may apply to your situation.
  • Job search expenses, certain relocation costs, and educational expenses related to career improvement may be deductible.
  • Keep good records, as this will simplify the tax filing process.
  • If your situation is complex, consider consulting a tax professional.

14. Retirement Planning:

It is always important to reassess your retirement strategy when circumstances change. Review your savings goals and contributions:

  • Decide whether to leave your 401k with your former employer, roll it into a new retirement account, or explore other options.
  • Consider the composition of your investments based on your existing time horizon.
  • Continue contributing to your retirement accounts, even at a reduced rate.
  • Maintaining contributions, even during job loss, can help you stay on track for retirement.

Efficiently managing your finances during a job loss requires a combination of budgeting, tax planning, and retirement strategy adjustments. Addressing these areas will provide confidence as you move forward with your plans.

Explore Income Opportunities

Being laid off from your job in the tech industry can be a great time to pursue alternative income opportunities. Consider freelancing or consulting in your area of expertise, taking on a side hustle, or even starting your own business.

15. Freelancing:

Working in the tech industry has given you some very marketable skills. Freelancing opportunities include, but are not limited to:

  • Web development,
  • Programming,
  • Graphic design,
  • Consulting,
  • Ghostwriting, or
  • Copywriting.

Consider leveraging your expertise on platforms like Upwork and Freelancer.

Also, reach out to your professional network. Contact former colleagues, clients, and industry contacts to find opportunities.

16. Side Hustles:

Side hustles are great ways to generate income outside your primary area of expertise. These include part-time or gig work that supplements your other income.

Explore opportunities that align with your passions and can generate income:

  • Writing,
  • Photography,
  • Crafting.
  • Selling products on platforms like Etsy, eBay, or Amazon

17. Entrepreneurship:

Perhaps you have always thought of starting your own business. Now is the time to make that dream a reality.

Brainstorm business ideas that align with your interests and expertise. These may include:

  • Software development
  • Consulting services,
  • Web design, or
  • Technical writing

Develop a business plan and put it into action. Start small and scale your business as it grows.

Whether you choose freelancing, a side hustle, or entrepreneurship, each path offers unique benefits and the potential to drastically change your life.

Optimize Your Resume and Online Presence

18. Resume Revamp:

Update your resume to highlight your skills and achievements.

  • Begin by updating the content of your resume.
  • Emphasize your skills, achievements, and relevant experiences in the tech industry.
  • Highlight any certifications, projects, or awards you’ve earned since your last update.
  • Use action verbs to describe your accomplishments and responsibilities.
  • Quantify your achievements with numbers and percentages to showcase your impact.

19. LinkedIn Profile:

Enhance your LinkedIn profile to attract potential employers or clients.

  • Ensure your photo is professional and presented well.
  • Consider a compelling headline that reflects your expertise and aspirations.
  • Use an engaging summary to highlight your career goals and strengths.
  • Use relevant keywords to improve your visibility in searches.

20. Personal Branding:

Social media can be an excellent way to build your brand and attract the right opportunities:

  • Consider starting a blog related to your tech expertise or career journey.
  • Share your insights and knowledge, positioning yourself as an industry expert.
  • Share industry-related articles, engage in discussions, and network with professionals in your field.
  • Consider writing guest posts for well-known tech publications or websites.

Contributing valuable content to authoritative platforms can boost your credibility and visibility.

21. Upskill:

Upskill or reskill by taking online courses in areas of demand.

  • Keep updated with industry trends and job market developments in the tech sector.
  • Consider taking online courses or participating in webinars related to your expertise. Keep your skills sharp and demonstrate your commitment to continuous learning to potential employers.
  • Websites like Coursera, edX, and LinkedIn Learning offer many free courses.
  • Earning certifications can make you more marketable.

View your time between jobs as an opportunity to invest in your education and personal growth. Remember, acquiring new skills can open doors to higher-paying positions or entrepreneurial opportunities.

22. Networking:

Tap into your professional network for job leads and opportunities.

  • Join online communities and forums relevant to your field.
  • Engage in discussions, share your expertise, and connect with peers who may know of opportunities.
  • Attend local network events related to your field of expertise.

These conversations can provide insights into potential referrals and job leads and strengthen your professional network.

Health and Wellness

The time off between jobs is a great time to prioritize your health. Concentrate not only on your physical health but your mental and spiritual health as well.

23. Mental Health:

Job loss can be emotionally challenging. Prioritize self-care activities that help you manage stress, anxiety, and mindfulness. Activities with proven benefits include:

  • Meditation,
  • Deep breathing exercises,
  • Daily journaling.,
  • Spending time with friends and family,
  • Physical activity

Physical activity significantly impacts how you feel—continuous exercise like walking or jogging releases endorphins, which can improve your mood.

However, if you’re struggling to cope with the emotional impact of job loss, consider seeking professional support.

24. Physical Health:

Continue to prioritize a healthy lifestyle during unemployment. Healthy habits include:

  • a nutritious diet,
  • proper hydration,
  • regular exercise, and
  • adequate sleep.

Consider techniques like yoga, mindfulness, or tai chi, as these activities can help you manage stress and maintain a sense of well-being.

Remember, regular physical activity can boost your immune system and reduce the risks of a sedentary lifestyle.

25. Spiritual Health:

Focusing on your spiritual health can provide the strength and resilience needed during challenging times, guiding you toward inner peace and clarity:

  • Seek community support through church or other spiritual groups.
  • Volunteer with your favorite charity to foster connections and purpose.
  • Consider mindfulness practices like meditation or journaling to center your thoughts and maintain a positive mindset.


The uncertainty of a layoff can feel overwhelming.

However, with a proactive approach and the right strategies, you can turn this momentary setback into an opportunity for growth and financial prosperity.

Whether you rebrand yourself, start your own business, or prioritize health and wellness, embrace this transition.

Stay resilient, keep learning, and don’t be afraid to explore new horizons.

In the meantime, stay tuned for expert advice on health, wealth, and wisdom to guide you through life’s challenges and opportunities.

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