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Facing redundancy? The path ahead is paved with transferable skills

Posted on | Posted in Candidate Resources, News

Why did the chicken cross the road? There wasn’t a lorry driver available to give it a lift.

You’ve probably heard the news reports of a partial closure of the restaurant chain Nando’s and fewer dishes on the menu at KFC. Turkey might be off the menu for some this Christmas too because of a labour shortage exacerbated by COVID and Brexit. No joke (…although the turkeys might be smiling).

There’s a candidate shortage problem for many industries, not least the serious lack of delivery drivers that’s disrupting the food supply chain.

Like supermarkets struggling to fill shelves; hospitality, catering, nursing, warehousing, engineering and construction are just a few of the other sectors having difficulty filling vacancies. It’s a nationwide issue affecting Basingstoke job vacancies and all other regions.

Yet, when the furlough scheme comes to an end in September 2021, it’s likely that job losses in some areas will increase. Unfortunately, redundancies look set to rise.

Transferable skills could bridge the gap

The ideal scenario would be if the demand for missing skills could be met by the fall-out from furlough. Whilst this might sound like a utopian vision, it’s simply a case of recognising, promoting, developing and implementing transferable skills.

These are typically ‘soft skills’ and can be taken from one industry to another.

Most wanted skills in 2021

HR Director quotes research from Hays, who surveyed 23,000 respondents and uncovered the soft skills which organisations are most in need of in 2021:

  • Communication and interpersonal skills (needed by 55%)
  • Ability to adopt change (53%)
  • Problem-solving (45%)
  • Flexibility and adaptability (43%)
  • People management skills (41%)

So, if you’re facing redundancy and wondering where you’ll get a job next, take a broad view. Your options will multiply once you start to consider all your soft skills. In short, not just WHAT you’ve been doing but HOW you’ve been doing it.

For example, a retail sales assistant role usually involves hard skills such as advising customers, operating a till, creating product displays and restocking shelves. Some of the soft skills required to do these tasks well would be communication, organisation, and creativity – all qualities that are valuable in many other jobs outside retail.

Need help to identify your soft skills?

It’s not always easy to look at the work you’ve done to date and pinpoint what your most notable soft skills are. With redundancy looming, you might feel panicked and even less able to do so.

Outplacement services can help! Through a combination of workshops, discussions, role plays, presentations and one-to-one sessions, Wote Street People will provide you with the advice and tools to identify what your soft skills are – and the confidence and encouragement to evidence and promote them to future employers.

Employers are usually keen to cover the cost of these sessions, so that you leave their organisation feeling positive, inspired and empowered – instead of leaving with negative feelings.

Find out more about outplacement services from Wote Street People here – and share the information with your manager.

Ways to expand your skill set

There’s no doubt that you have many transferable skills that you can apply to the next step in your career. However, if redundancy has left you thinking about a career change, career coaching can help you make that switch.

As a recruitment experts in Basingstoke, Wote Street People has helped many people to change careers. It’s all about recognising your strengths, what interests you, what makes you happy, and where you truly see yourself succeeding. Then, learning how that industry works and taking the right steps to get there.

Soft skills are an integral part of this process but there might be some training you need to undertake to develop your hard skills too. Financial limitations don’t have to hold you back. The Government Skills Toolkit is a free online resource, there to help you learn the skills you need to get that dream job. It has been launched to help tackle the skills shortage in certain areas.

Courses include everything from digital design and marketing to personal growth and wellbeing, and professional development to computer science and coding.

16-24 years old?

A £352bn support package has been pledged by the Government to protect and create work for people across the UK through its ‘Plan for Jobs’.

This includes financial support to encourage employers to recruit and train young people who, in return, learn the skills and develop the experience they need to progress in their desired career.

The Kickstart Scheme provides funding to employers to create jobs for 16–24-year-olds on Universal Credit in England, Wales and Scotland. Then there’s the Apprenticeship Scheme, which aims to “connect people with ambition to businesses with vision.”

Traineeships help prepare 16–24-year-olds in England for employment or an apprenticeship by giving them at least 70 hours of work experience lasting from six weeks to a year. T-levels are new, two-year qualifications for 16- to 19-year-olds that include a 45-day placement in a business to help people develop their knowledge, attitude and practical skills.

So, if you fall into this age group, why not investigate some of these opportunities to improve your career prospects?

A bright future

Whatever age you are, try to look at redundancy in a positive light. Now is your chance to explore all the sides of yourself, re-evaluate what you want out of your job, and learn new things.

Identifying your transferable skills might just be the catalyst for a life-changing redirection.

For more information about identifying, developing and applying your transferable skills and Basingstoke job vacancies, please contact 01256 799127 or email

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