Can I ask to be laid off?

by Evil HR Lady on April 24, 2013

Dear Evil HR Lady,

The company I work for is going through an outsourcing, and a few people were let go. There is a possibility that more will be let go. I would like to start my own business, and I am very due for a career change as I have been very stressed and unhappy for a few years. I would like to ask to be considered for a layoff so I would be entitled to a severance package. Can I approach HR or my manager with this?

To read the answer, click here: Can I ask to be laid off?

{ 11 comments… read them below or add one }

Charlotte April 24, 2013 at 4:31 pm

I’m sorry, this is completely off topic. Any more information on the resume project? I’m dying with curiosity here…its the HR in me that always gets to know everything. 🙂


Evil HR Lady April 25, 2013 at 6:34 am

The HR in me always wants to know everything too.

And here is what there is to know….

So, I started this project, got a new contract at Inc, had a few personal things happen, and I finally bought a new case of paper (which is surprisingly necessary for this project). Thanks for the kick in the pants. I’m someone who works best with a deadline and when I make up projects on my own, I tend to not have deadlines.


Charlotte April 25, 2013 at 6:08 pm

Ok…I guess I can wait for a while longer then…I’m really excited to learn what I can from the project…congrats on the new contract!


Jay from Philly April 24, 2013 at 6:25 pm

Maybe a manager if you know they are considering layoffs. Never go to HR for anything.


Lol April 24, 2013 at 11:11 pm

Someone seems awfully spiteful toward HR. Odd that you read/comment on an HR dedicated blog…


Charlotte April 25, 2013 at 6:10 pm

Agreed. And that varies a lot from company to company. It would be really unfortunate if some poor soul never used a good HR dept as a resource because of this comment. And I’m not saying that they’re all good…


Jay from Philly April 25, 2013 at 9:41 pm

The only thing that backs you up on your job is your paycheck. HR works for the company, not you. Never go to HR for anything.


Charlotte April 25, 2013 at 11:45 pm

Maybe this attitude is why HR isn’t willing to help you?


College Career Counselor April 26, 2013 at 3:06 pm

Jay’s point is that when push comes to shove, HR works for the organization, not the employee. And, frankly, a lot of people forget that. I suspect that Jay’s strategy of never going to HR for anything has two consequences:

1) it may prevent him from receiving assistance if his needs coincide with the firm’s. (or if the firm is doing something against the law–and he can prove it)

2) if he doesn’t depend on HR, he never gets burned by HR, either.

The key is to figure out how to use HR resources to your benefit as an employee.

Manager requiring overtime for non-exempt employee, but not paying? Yeah, that’s an HR issue.

Want to learn more about the benefits of the company EAP? Go talk to HR.

Boss is abusive and demeaning? Go to HR, unless your boss outranks the HR director. In that case, it’s time for another job.

Want advice on a severance package? HR will maximize the position of the organization, not the departing employee. Talk to an employment attorney. And don’t sign anything HR puts in front of you without you and your lawyer reading it first.


Charlotte April 26, 2013 at 8:14 pm

And all of that is fair, but it’s also not what he’s saying. He’s saying NEVER go to HR. So, if I need FMLA leave, I shouldn’t go talk to HR?


Evil HR Lady April 26, 2013 at 3:15 pm

The reality is, there are some incredibly awful HR departments and some incredibly awesome HR departments. If you have the former, you’re wise to stay away. If you have the latter, you’d be wise to make good contacts with them.

Any HR department where I work is, of course, awesome.


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