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What You Should Include in a Resignation Letter and What to Avoid (Plus Samples as Guides)

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employee carrying all his personal belongings into a brown cardboard box with his resignation letter

Employees sometimes wonder if the grass is indeed greener on the other side. If yes, they can choose to take on a new role. They can also have a change in their workplace to achieve a fulfilling career. With the COVID-19 pandemic, companies have been reorganizing, and businesses have been opening and closing. Consequently, your current job may cause inconvenience or even put your health at risk.

If you are eyeing a new career, you should think about preparing your resignation letter. Regardless of your reason, it might be the right time for you to consider finding a job elsewhere. However, many employees may have a hard time trying to leave their current role. And this process begins when they hand in their resignation letter.

What is a Resignation Letter?

A resignation letter is a document submitted by employees to their employer. It serves as a formal notice that they will be quitting their work. Moreover, it provides information about the last day of an employee at work. It outlines their next steps or exit strategy. Most importantly, however, a resignation letter helps them maintain a good relationship with their employer.

Employee Talking To Supervisor About His Resignation

How to Write a Resignation Letter

Writing and turning in a formal resignation letter can make a lasting effect on how you will be viewed by your current and future employers and colleagues. As such, you should know how to write a resignation letter and what you should include in it.

That being said; talk to your manager first about your resignation. Then, write your resignation letter with these tips in mind:

1. Make it brief and direct to the point.

Why this is important: There is no need to include a lengthy explanation of why you are resigning. Instead, go straight to the point with the specifics of your resignation, such as your last day of work, turnover of tasks, and other important details (see number 4).

2. Express gratitude.

Why this is important: If you have a good professional relationship with your employer, show that you appreciate them by describing how your experience has benefited you. Make sure that you remain in good terms with them even after your resignation. This is to keep a good record in case your future employers check your work history. This would also come in handy if your soon-to-be former employer wishes to work with you again under the right circumstances or offer you better projects in the future.

3. Use a neutral tone.

Why this is important: Even if your actual reason for leaving involves a negative experience with your job or your boss, your tone should remain professional. Be courteous, respectful, and thankful. In this way, you can have proper closure. Who knows, like the point mentioned above, you may still encounter them in your future job.

4. Tailor your resignation letter.

Why this is important: If you have a template to guide you on how to write a resignation letter, make sure that the contents are related to your role and employer. Include the following basic details:

  • Your last day. Indicate the date when your resignation takes effect. Ideally, it should be at least two weeks after you hand in your resignation letter.
  • Assistance during transition. State your willingness to help with the turnover to ensure a smooth transition. For example, indicate when you will be available to discuss your workload. You can provide status updates to your manager, or even endorse your tasks to your replacement.
  • Your appreciation. Thank your employer for the chance of working for the company and with your colleagues regardless of the issues you faced or the nature of the workplace itself.

5. Ask another person to review your resignation letter.

Why this is important: Ask someone else to read your resignation letter before you hand it in. This is to make sure that your letter is succinct and formal.

6. Be timely.

Why this is important: Send your resignation letter at least two weeks before your last day. Doing so is a sign of courtesy. It implies that you are still considering the welfare of your colleagues or replacement. It also shows how professional you are even if you’re already leaving.

What Not to Include in a Resignation Letter

In some cases, many employees include too much personal info in their formal resignation letter. They even express their strong emotions against their colleagues or boss.

However, always remember that your letter should not the place where you air your grievances. When you write your resignation letter, leave out the following details:

  • Your detailed reason for leaving. It may seem reasonable to explain why you are leaving. But there is no need to indicate a detailed reason in your resignation letter. Avoid talking about better offers like products, workplace, salary, services, or benefits that the new company has for you.
  • Your issues or problems related to your job. You should not use your resignation letter as a tool where you vent out your issues. Avoid being negative and badmouthing your company or coworkers.
  • Your intense feelings. It can be tempting to finally express how bad you feel about your work in your resignation letter. But as tempting as it may seem, you must still use a polite and professional tone in your letter. If you feel resentful and overworked, don’t burn bridges. Don’t use phrases that begin with “I feel” or “I think” unless you are showing your appreciation for the company.
Man Heeding Tips On How To Write A Resignation Letter, Editing To Keep It Brief And Professional

Resignation Letter Examples

Crafting a formal resignation letter is a key part of your resignation process. When done right, it can actually leave a good impression on your current and future employers. Here are some resignation letter examples that you can use as template:

Typical Resignation Letter

[Date]

Dear [Supervisor’s Name],

Please accept this letter as a formal notice of my resignation from my position as [title]. My final day with [Company] will be [date of your last day].

To ensure a smooth transition, I am willing to help you train my replacement during my last weeks on the job. I shall also provide clear instructions and endorse all my duties.

I would like to thank you for the knowledge and experience I have gained for the past [duration of employment]. I am grateful for the time I have worked with our team and the professional relationships I have built. It has been a privilege working for you. I hope that our paths will cross again in the future.

Sincerely,

[Your Signature and Printed Name]

Resignation Letter for a New Job Offer

Though you should not mention a detailed reason for leaving, it will be safe to state personal reasons or benefits like a chance of having a work-life balance.

[Date]

Dear [Supervisor’s Name],

I would like to inform you of my resignation from the position of [job title] with [Company] effective on [date of last day].

I have been offered another role that will be more convenient in terms of transportation and thus allow me to have more time with my family after office hours. [You may indicate other reasons, but state them briefly.]

Please let me know how I can help you ensure a smooth transition. It has been a pleasure working for [Company] over the last [years and months of service]. I would like to thank you for all the opportunities and experiences I gained here. They have surely prepared me for my next endeavor.

I hope that our paths will cross again in the future.

Sincerely,

[Your Signature and Printed Name]

Resignation Letter for a Role Beyond Your Skill Set/Expertise

[Date]

Dear [Supervisor’s Name],

Please accept this letter as a formal notice of my resignation from my position as [Title]. My final day with [Company] will be on [date of your last day].

During my time here, I have realized that the scope of my role does not match with my skill set/expertise. In this regard, I would like to explore other opportunities where I can apply my skills and maximize my potential.

Please let me know how I can help with a smooth transition over the next [notice period in weeks].

Thank you very much for understanding. I truly appreciate the chance of working with the team, and I hope that our paths will cross again in the future.

Sincerely,

[Your Signature and Printed Name]

Girl Heeding Tips On How To Write A Resignation Letter On Her Computer

Let an Expert Write Your Resignation Letter

You have probably read dozens of career advice on having a good impression during your job search or as you move up your career ladder. But have you thought about the impression you leave when you quit your job? You may assume that it’s not a big deal, given that you’re already leaving. Yet a good impression is still important. You will definitely need help from your former colleagues, boss, and HR departments for references. You may even encounter them in your new role. So, you should consider the best way on how to write a resignation letter.

Resigning is a tough life decision that you should take seriously. If you are thinking about new options and opportunities, we are here to help you write a resignation letter. Check out our services or talk to one of our professional resume writers. We’ve got your back as you prepare for your next step toward your career growth.

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