How To Write A Resignation Letter

Whether you’ve found a new job, or you believe it’s just time to move on, writing a resignation letter can be challenging – particularly if it was a job you enjoyed. Resignation letters aren’t a legal requirement, it is still courteous to do so in order to inform your employer of the situation by officially announcing the end of your contract. 

Even if it’s a job you’ll be happy to leave, it’s important to remain on good terms with your employer, as future employers carry out background checks which include past employment. Before you make the final decision to quit, assess your reasons for leaving to ensure that the pros outweigh the cons. 

Make sure you have alternative employment lined up before officially quitting by handing in your resignation as this is vital for financial security, as well as preventing gaps in your resume. It’s also a good idea to check your company’s policy around resignation so you can be sure of your notice period and any corporate guidelines that you need to adhere to.

Once you have done so, it’s time to draft your letter of resignation letter to pass onto your boss either via email or in handwritten form. 

What You Need To Include In Your Resignation Letter

If you’re unsure how to quit your job, there are a few essentials which you need to include in your resignation letter. Keep it short and concise, but be sure to include the following:

  • The exact end date of when you will be leaving your current workplace – this is the most important part of the letter, and so should be in the first sentence or paragraph of the letter. Make sure to also include the date of resignation.
  • Your letter will be kept on company record, so clarify your position in the first paragraph of the letter. For example, write: ‘I will be leaving my position as…’.
  • Your notice period – this tends to be two weeks, but it is dependent on company policy so ensure you have double-checked beforehand.
  • Your contact information, including your full name, address and phone number in case your workplace needs to get in touch in the future. 
  • Explain your reasons for leaving without criticizing your current job. It can be as simple as logistical reasons, such as moving to a new area, or just that you feel you can no longer grow within the company.
  • Always thank your employer, expressing gratitude for the opportunity to work at their company. 

Tips For Writing A Courteous Resignation Letter 

Even if you know what details to include in your resignation letter, it can be hard to know how to make the letter as tactful and polite as possible while still getting the point across. Throughout your letter of resignation, make sure to:

  • Speak positively of the company and its colleagues by sharing a message of gratitude to your employer. 
  • Avoid talking about your new job too much, particularly in a boastful way, as it may be disheartening to your colleagues.
  • Keep the letter concise. While you need to include all the vital information, cut out anything that isn’t actually necessary.
  • Refrain from writing the letter while angry, even if you feel you have good reason to be. The letter may be mentioned to future employees, so keep it polite by writing your letter when you’re in the correct frame of mind to do so. 

Once you have handed in your letter, clear your desk discreetly and say goodbye to other colleagues – never do this before officially giving in your resignation letter as your employer should be the first to know of your decision to quit. 

If appropriate, you can even offer your employer help in finding a replacement or training new staff, so that you will be remembered fondly. Providing you have acted in accordance with your employment contract, your employer cannot legally refuse your resignation letter, so once your notice period is up, you will be able to move onto your new job.

So, if you are planning on leaving and are needing to write a resignation letter, remember to maintain a certain level of politeness. No matter what your reasons for leaving your current job, a degree of professionalism is essential for both you and your employer. Now, you can look forward to your future career as you leave this one behind gracefully. 


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