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Make the best of it

Read inspiring stories about people who have moved on successfully after redundancy

Once you've sorted out your facts and figures, use the job searching directory and advice about applying for jobs - all the advice and links are gathered together in one place to make it simpler for you.

Get your facts and figures right

If you’ve worked for an employer for at least 2 years you have the right to receive redundancy pay. You can calculate your statutory redundancy entitlement using the Directgov calculator. 

What regular financial commitments do you have?  Could any be reduced or could the terms be changed?  For example: mortgages, direct debits, credit cards, loans, hire purchase, life and/or health insurance, subscriptions and memberships.

  • Check any pension schemes you are contributing to - do you need to do anything?
  • Do you qualify for benefits?  Check the Directgov website for details of benefits and help with looking for work or going back to work. For example, you can apply online or by phone (0800 055 6688) for Jobseeker's Allowance.
  • Could you use your skills to do some freelancing?
  • Could you save money by swapping skills and time with friends, neighbours and acquaintances - for example, decorating, gardening, babysitting, maintenance, IT equipment repairs, housework etc.?

Enterprise allowances

If you've been receiving the Jobseekers Allowance for 26 weeks or more you could qualify for the New Enterprise Allowance - a package worth up to £2,274 - if you have a viable idea for a new business. For more information about starting your own business go to Enterprise Opportunities.


Education or training could boost your career prospects and earning potential. Studying part-time at the college or university near you may be an option but do check that your benefits aren't affected because you're not available for work. Or try the Open University where all courses are part-time and studied at home in your own time. For more detailed advice go to the study choices pages. If you're on unemployment related benefits, lots of college courses are free. 

If you want to go back into formal education, check the section on financial help for study.

Do some informal learning via Free University Brighton - there are hundreds of topics to choose from, groups meet locally in Brighton and there's nothing to pay. Alternatively, if you want to learn by yourself, try OpenLearn - free materials on a wide range of subjects for you to download and use as you wish.

Already a graduate?

Consider a short course to improve your employability - as well as the postgraduate section, look at the business facing pages of your local university and college websites to see what's on offer.   

See the Guardian's guide to what it would cost to do postgraduate study. Also have a look at the information and advice for postgraduates at Prospects and Postgraduate Study: Getting Started .

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