Where the hell do I even start? ?

(10 Posts)
IrianOfW Wed 04-Apr-18 19:44:49

The company I work for merged with a Europe-wide group two years ago. Last year we bought a small bit of a US company which includes several sites in UK. Yesterday we were informed that our HO will be closing and anyone who is still needed after the integration will have to move. THe other HO is 300 miles away.

I am 53, I still have three kids at home. Eldest has finally got a job after a years unemployment but itsn't yet in a position to move out. DD in college and DS2 in school. DH's job is here. And a few years ago my parents moved to be near me - they are in their late 80s and increasingly frail. So moving away isn't an option realistically.

I work in IT in a quite specialised area. Because I have worked for this company for 20 plus years I know the business and it's systems intimately but I am afraid I may not have transferable skills. I would willing work in a different area but as I am the main breadwinner I can't really afford to take too much of a pay cut

So far nothing is certain. There will be a massive review of all our systems to see what should stay, what should go and what should be merged but as far as I can see the options will be: 1. bye bye with a redundancy package (I hope!) or 2. move to the other office.

I am so confused and worried. Anyone got any advice?


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Godotsarrived Wed 04-Apr-18 19:51:10

Have you any idea of what any redundancy package would be? How financially secure would you be if you took that. Alternatively could you move with the company and perhaps stay in a hotel during the week. If relocating is absolutely not an option I guess these are your only options. If you were secure financially could you take a job in a different sector?

IrianOfW Wed 04-Apr-18 20:03:27

Don't know any details but last time the company made people redundant it was the basic rate - a week's salary per year of employment. That would just about pay of a loan we had.

If they still wanted me I would be OK with working at least part of the time at the other site - but would want to negotiate to work for some of the time from home.

Problem is I just dont have enough facts yet.

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Godotsarrived Wed 04-Apr-18 20:09:34

I know it must be difficult but try to keep calm. Put the feelers out to see if there are other options closer to home. I changed careers two years ago and went to a career consultant. Completely re did my CV and professional profile. Found loads of transferable skills I hadn’t even thought off and gave me loads of useful advice. I had a new job and direction in 3 months. £250 very well spent. Like you I am older
(50 this year) and thought age was against me. Good luck.

YourEmailInboxisFull Wed 04-Apr-18 20:14:16

@IrianOfW sorry to hear this is happening.

Change is horrible and the ifs / buts / maybe questions are difficult to answer when you haven’t got a full picture.

In your position, if your skill set is so niche and unique, you upping and leaving would really put them in a difficult situation. I would therefore use this to your advantage and consider requesting a meeting with your manager to discuss the future situation.

Have they started a consultation with all that are affected, informing people of the relocation?

If they know the relocation is happening and there are more than 20 people at risk of redundancy, they’ll start consulting over a decent amount of time. This time is great to discuss your options with management and put concerns and proposals forward. For example, if the place relocated in 12 months, consider a retention package to ensure you are rewarded for staying to the end. The consultation would also give a bit more information on the time scales - certain operational activities and departments may more over at different phases over a period of time.

If you’re not in consultation stage and only predicting what may happen, the discussion on the future may be difficult (they may not want to share information with you that isn’t public). Offer to sign an Non Disclosure Agreement, put forward that you really want to support the smooth transition and although you can’t relocate, you will help transfer the work to the end (and be rewarded / retained until the last phase of people are transferred).

Do this help?

It’s easier to say don’t worry, but honestly, you are still young (in the job market) and your skills sound like they’d be needed within the existing company so try to use it to your advantage.

BunnyEars1 Wed 04-Apr-18 22:26:45

Surely you would have to be made redundant, 300 miles is too far to consider anything else!

IrianOfW Thu 05-Apr-18 07:36:19

Thanks everyone.

godot - I like the idea of a career consultant because atm all I can see is doom and gloom.

youremail - yes, that is most helpful. They have mentioned consultation etc but as yet only one area of the business has been earmarked for first transfer/redundancy. IT will be the last to go I suspect.

bunny - I just checked and it's only just under 200 miles so I was exagerating a little! But even so. They have mentioned there will be places for our staff at the other location so I guess it's not out of the question.

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WhatABaklava Thu 05-Apr-18 07:43:29

Please get legal advice. My understanding (as this happened to my DH though with a significantly smaller distance to new office) is that they are materially changing your contract and you can argue for constructive dismissal. You should then be able to agree a compromise agreement in which you get what you would have been entitled to under redundancy.

Don’t let them bully you. Get legal advice.

YourEmailInboxisFull Thu 05-Apr-18 22:24:31

@WhatABaklava I disagree with you here regarding constructive dismissal. What happened to your husband does not necessarily mean that will happen with the OP. There is plenty of evidence to suggest they know what they’re doing, certainly from the last update from the OP.

By all means take legal advice OP. My view (as HR) is that this clear cut in terms of a redundancy situation due to relocation. Relocating 200 miles at some point in the future, will result in your existing role being made redundant; but as per my previous advice, try to start the discussions and see if you can negotiate a decent exit package by sticking around. The company sounds like they’ve started consulting so they know the legal process they have to follow.

IrianOfW Fri 06-Apr-18 09:40:03

Thanks all.

Meeting our new finance director today. Hoping to learn more.

I am trying not to listen to rumours which terrify and offer hope in equal measure!

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