Robbin Ruiter says that Sunderland's relegation to League One is particularly hard on the club's staff.
Ruiter signed a two-year deal last August but has not featured since January and has recently been injured with a broken finger.
The Dutchman has endured a difficult season alongside fellow goalkeepers Lee Camp and Jason Steele, with the club's managers making a change in the position eight times over the course of the season.
Ruiter admits he thought the club would compete for promotion when he signed and now says they must get back to the second tier at the first time of asking.
In an interview with Voetbal International, he said: "If you sign with a club that has just been relegated from the Premier League, you hope to participate in promotion the following year. That has not happened. [It's tough] especially for people in the office.
"Footballers and managers are passersby, these people live for the club. Suppose they lose their job... The only thing this club can do now is return to the Championship as soon as possible. "
Like most of the Sunderland squad, Ruiter's future is uncertain.
The Black Cats will likely overhaul their goalkeeping department this summer, with Jason Steele almost leaving for Derby County in the January window. He has since returned to the side and performed well, while Ruiter is now back training and fit following his injury lay-off.
The 31-year-old had nothing but praise for the club ahead of what is likely to be a busy summer.
He said: "And yet this is a great adventure [despite injury and relegation].
"Sunderland is a big club, many people in the Netherlands do not know about this. The stadium, the fans, the training complex. In addition, I played away games against clubs like Aston Villa and Wolverhampton. That is incredibly cool."