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Clever Ways To Talk About A Layoff In A Job Interview

Seismic shifts are happening to careers all across the tech sector this year as job cuts continue to bite deeply. This week alone, Workhuman, a cloud-based, human capital management software solutions company announced plans to reduce its global workforce by 10%. Amazon too is to cut another 9,000 jobs internationally––on top of the 18,000 layoffs already announced in January.

In total, according to, 513 tech companies have cut 150,518 employees so far this year. If you’re one of them, you’re not alone, and encouragingly, a recent study found that tech workers are finding new jobs fast. Additionally, 80% of those who got a new job after a redundancy said they didn’t have to take a pay cut.

That’s positive news, but getting laid off from a job comes with a whole slew of emotions. It’s even got a name: layoff anxiety. This can manifest itself in a number of ways: grief, stress, fear and shame––what if a new employer sees a resume gap and decides not to hire you?

In reality, a short gap isn’t likely to raise much of a red flag for a new employer. U.S. unemployment data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), found that the median unemployment duration in May 2021 was 19.3 weeks, or about five months.

Up front is best

What might affect your chances is how you present this gap in your career. For starters, you need to rid yourself of any shame you might feel, and aim to think of your job loss as a temporary setback.

Being up-front is the best approach. If you were laid off as part of company restructuring along with many others, it is clear you were not at fault. Avoid over-explaining also––a short, factual reason for why you were let go is perfectly acceptable, before you move on.

Stay positive. While you may harbor anger towards your former employer, it’s vital you don’t show it, and instead, speak encouragingly about your time at the company.


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You can impress with performance metrics too, which will show the value you can bring to a new job. Emphasize all the positive contributions you brought about while in the role–– “I improved team performance by 35%”, for example. Let the interviewer know about the skills and experience you’ve garnered over the course of your career too.

If you are ready to dip your toe back into the job hunting waters, then the Techwire Asia Job Board is a great place to start. With thousands of jobs to discover, check out three below.

Senior Lead System Architect, Lumen, Remote

Lumen has 450,000 route fiber miles delivering the fastest, most secure global platform for applications and data. As the Senior Lead System Architect, you will lead the understanding of business needs, translation of those needs into innovative, scalable, and maintainable architecture constructs and solutions. You’ll perform analysis of technical trade-offs, determination of major components and subsystems, and definition of interfaces. You’ll also be responsible for creation and maintenance of project life cycle documents/deliverables. You’ll need eight-plus years’ experience as a senior system architect responsible for business requirements and architecture in enterprise systems, plus experience working with diverse stakeholders and teams in a dynamic environment. Additionally, you’ll need experience with SAFE or other Agile methodology plus experience mentoring and coaching and driving operational improvements. Find out more here.

Big Data Engineer, Senior, Fiserv, Berkeley Heights

Fiserv is a global leader in fintech and payments and enables innovative financial services experiences that are in step with the way people live today. As the Big Data Engineer, Senior, you will be responsible for building and taking ownership over the successful design and development of data engineering projects. You will apply your depth of knowledge and expertise to all aspects of the data engineering lifecycle, as well as partner continuously with your many stakeholders on a daily basis to stay focused on common goals. If you’d like to be considered, you’ll need to have 10 years’ overall industry experience, seven years’ experience with building large scale big data applications development as well as a Bachelor’s in computer science or a related field. Get more information here.

DevOps Engineer – Sydney, Macquarie Group Limited, Sydney

As a DevOps Engineer, you will work, as a high performing and versatile individual. You will be part of a technical team, responsible for providing technical support for software applications and systems across supported portfolios. This may include troubleshooting and resolving technical issues, assisting users with software functionality, and providing training and documentation. You will also be managing and maintaining IT infrastructure both on-prem and AWS, including servers and storage systems, while providing advice on the capabilities of systems to meet business needs. To apply, you’ll need five years’ experience, and knowledge of the software development life cycle and ITIL framework. Troubleshooting and problem-solving experience as well as experience writing MS-SQL queries and interacting with databases is also required. Get the full rundown here.

Elevate your career to the next level––browse thousands of opportunities on the Techwire Asia Job Board here