There are two groups of employees who will be interested in this post: those worried about current job security, and those wondering if the job they are applying for at some other company is going to provide a secure enough future.

READ. Read. Read.

The internet is a great tool for keeping tabs on your employer and on any future employer. The internet, when you know how to use it for this purpose, can uncover footprints in the sand, so to say, clues which often helps you discover the likely degree of competitive and financial stability of the company in question. Read press releases. Read the President’s message, and that of any other executives,  in quarterly and annual shareholder reports. Read the entire interview, or watch entire interviews online when available.

Put Your Trading Account to Good Use.

If you are the type of person who purchases your own stocks, you will have ready access to analyst reports through your online broker, provided your company stock is traded on one of the stock exchanges. If you do not trade stocks, then ask a friend who does…Those analyst reports, when available,  often suggest actions that management must take to improve its financial performance. When they suggest cost cutting programs, you can also take that to mean reducing employee head count. It pays to read almost everything.

Competition is Always Important.

If your company does not trade its stock on the exchanges and you want to find clues about the company’s future financial strength, use a surrogate such as one of that company’s major competitors.

A company, similar to yours or who is a direct competitor to your company, can provide valuable clues to common issues and strategies that your own company is likely to face and implement.

Understand the Challenge

New strategies within your own company, or new competitive strategies by competitors, can have major affects to your company’s cost structure. So much so, that your company may need to lay off employees.Is your job likely to be affected?

If the company is a public company, ( listed on the stock exchanges), there should be a great deal of information readily available through the likes of YAHOO FINANCE. One of my favorite tools is the price chart. Take a look at it but use at least a 5-year view.  The full story is LIKELY to be revealed in stock price: trending down, over many months, or even years, will bring cost reduction programs.

Its All About The Bottom Line

Profits is the single most important responsibility of the executive team, every manager and employee in a company. When profits, also called the bottom line, are hurting, then everyone in the company will feel the pain.