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How to gauge if your job is (relatively) secure

As the saying goes:  Only death and taxes are certain. So there is no fail-safe test to say whether an individual’s job is safe.  But there a few telling signs that may give you a little bit of insight.

Take a look at your role in the organization, and start by answering the following questions. If your assessment gives you pause, note that these are guidelines only.  Your individual role may be unique and could fall outside of these parameters, making this general evaluation not fit specific expert roles.

How central to the company’s main purpose is your job?

The closer to the core of the company’s business, the better your outlook.  If you are employed by an operating company, working on the company’s key assets is better than working on non-core assets.  However, find out if the company is moving into new plays.  Today’s non-core work may be tomorrow’s core business.  A lot of oil and gas companies over the last few years have made major changes and moved to shales or other unconventional areas.

Solution:  Learn your company’s main mission, and make adjustments as you feel necessary.  If the non-core area lies exactly within your area of expertise, and the area you enjoy working, then prepare yourself by studying the market and identifying companies that are a better fit for you.  Preparedness is half the battle in many cases.

Do you work with customers in the service industry?

If you work in the service business, and you work close to paying customers who like working with you, then your chances are pretty good that your job is safe.  Letting people go who bring in money is not very likely unless your employer has larger issues.

Solution:  If possible, volunteer to meet with a customer to solve a problem if you are not directly involved with clients on a day-to-day basis. Or see if you can switch to a more permanent role with client interaction.

Do you add to the bottom line, or is your position more of an overhead function?

There is nothing you can do if by definition you are supporting the bottom line teams in your company.  The closer to the bottom line, i.e. operations and productions in an E&P company or customer-oriented departments in the service sector, the better your chances of remaining employed.

Solution:  If it troubles you that you are in a support role, then look at your resume and assess how you could transition into a different role.  Talk to your manager and get advice.

Are your tools up to date?

Be honest about your skills.  Are you up to speed on the latest information technology?  If your department or team is heavily dependent on utilizing the most modern software and if you don’t possess the latest skills, then now is a good time to take some courses. Years of otherwise solid experience may not protect you if your technology skills are insufficient for the work you have to complete.

Solution:  Easy.  Additional training and classes.

Do you have friends in the organization, or do you live the life of a mushroom?

If people do not know you, then you could fall victim without deserving it!  When cuts have to be made because of changes in the organization, you may be considered non-essential simply because you are not known well enough. 

Solution:  Start networking now. Volunteer for important projects and other company activities, even social ones. Again, these factors may not pertain to you if you are a true master in a particular niche field.  And if you do feel uneasy, then the good news for you is that there are choices you can make to put yourself in a stronger position.  

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1 Response to “How to gauge if your job is (relatively) secure”

  1. Professional Plus 2010 says:

    I saw his face, his heart suddenly began to move around, a wave of strange feelings in silence fills from the bottom of your heart, feel that the tide had gone down the sand, love moist.She soft, but can not say . It was clear that this man is the husband of another person, the father of three children. The shadow of children and their education has suffered from discouraging him! That summer, his love, his warm smile and despair, and again in full bloom.

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