Are you making a big career move during the pandemic?
By Fabiana Klaasman, Financial Adviser at Sanlam.
Significant changes on the work front are one of the many knock-on effects of COVID-19. Many have been forced to face a career change due to retrenchment or reduced income. In rarer cases – a new opportunity that has led to a leap of faith. Whatever the circumstances, the impact of a career change on one’s life and finances should be well considered.
Sanlam stresses the importance of remaining focused on your financial future, especially during tough times. This has been an extremely tumultuous year for so many of us. Carefully planning our way through the fall-out of COVID-19 is highly recommended, and especially for those of us with altered financial or employment circumstances.
Let’s look at the types of employment changes and how to plan through them.
1. “I was retrenched recently.”
If you have been retrenched, remain calm, and remember you have done nothing wrong. Work with your financial planner to decide on the best way to invest the package you have been offered. If you do not have a qualified and accredited financial planner, now is the time to find one.
Your planner will ask the right questions and offer guidance on making provision for an income during this time while investing the rest. Now is the right time to re-evaluate your budget and cut unnecessary expenses.
Use this time to update your CV and LinkedIn profile and make it stand out from the rest, focusing on your skills and not job titles. Your next employer needs to know you have the necessary skills and adaptability to work in this new world.
2. “I am thinking about a job change.”
If you are considering changing jobs, ask yourself whether you are doing it for the right reasons. Use a mentor or a friend as a sounding board to discuss the pros and cons. Also, do your research thoroughly to make sure you don’t merely focus on the position and salary in job advertisements, but check the fine print to determine whether the job and the company are a good fit for you regarding culture, values, and skills.
3. “I have been offered a new job opportunity.”
Congratulations! While this is exciting, you’ll do well to remember that joining a new company under the current work-from-home conditions may make it harder to build relationships, especially if you will also be working from home initially or in the long run.
Before you sign on the dotted line, inform your financial planner so that he or she can compare your current and new package holistically. Take everything into account, including your cash salary, leave, bonuses, and group benefits from your previous employer versus your new employer.
With the help of a financial planner, you may also want to revisit your short-, medium-, and long-term goals to ensure your new job is aligned with those goals. It is important to set boundaries in terms of your priorities, given the current working-from-home situation. If your new job requires you to work from home or travel to the office every day, consider how this will affect your family and personal life.
Regardless of the situation you find yourself in; it is essential to obtain guidance and holistic advice from your financial planner to ensure the next step in your career is the right one.
Sanlam is a Licensed Financial Services Provider.