How to Write a Letter of Resignation

You’ve decided to move on from your current occupation and now you’re left wondering how to write a letter of resignation. If this sounds familiar, you might be feeling completely overwhelmed but don’t panic. It really isn’t as scary as it sounds!

To quit your current job, all you will need to do is put it in writing as an official document. The purpose of a resignation letter or notice letter is to inform your current employer that you will be terminating your employment with the organisation. They show professionalism and courtesy to your employer. 

In this article, we will walk you through step-by-step on how to write a letter of resignation.

How to write a letter of resignation to your employer

Maybe this is your first time resigning from a job or perhaps you’ve done this plenty of times before but not for a few years so you’re a little out of practice. We’re here to provide you with the latest resignation tips and steps, as well as examples which you can tailor to your employer and use yourself. 

  • Make your resignation statement

First, you’ll need to make your resignation statement. This doesn’t need to be sugar coated, just keep it short and sweet. Explain which position you are resigning from and the effective date. Make sure you check through your employment contract to ensure the effective date is in line with your notice period. Make sure you also include how much notice you are giving. 

Normally, if you have been in your job for under a month you won’t need to give any notice. One week’s notice will usually be required if you’ve been in your job for over one month. However, it’s always best to check the terms and conditions in your contract to see your notice period requirements as they can vary from employer to employer. 

Also, remember that the day you hand in your resignation letter is not included. So if you hand in your notice on Monday, your week’s notice will start from the day after (Tuesday).

Example:

‘Dear [Boss’ Name],

Please accept this letter as an official notification that I am resigning from my position as [job title] with [organisation name]. In line with my notice period requirements, my final day with the company will be [insert date].’

  • Be thankful

Always be thankful and leave on good terms when handing in your resignation. Your current position and the experience you’ve gained will have helped you secure your new role so it’s courteous to say thank you. Plus you might still need your current employer for a reference. List all the things you’ve enjoyed within your role to leave a positive impression. 

Example:

‘I would like to thank you for the opportunities you have given me in my position as a [include job title]. I have really enjoyed [list of key tasks you’ve enjoyed], and I’ve learned so much within my role which has prepared me for a new challenge in my career. I really appreciate all the guidance and support you have given me throughout my time at [insert company name].’

  • Your reasons

Why are you resigning? Perhaps you’re looking for a new challenge or you fancy a career change? Or maybe you’ve progressed as far as you can with your current company and you’re looking to work higher up the career ladder with another company. Whatever your reasons, you’ll need to give a brief overview to your boss of your reasons for leaving the company.

Example:

‘I thoroughly enjoyed my role at [insert company name], however, I am now looking for further development opportunities, where I can continue expanding on the skill set I have already learned here. I now feel I am ready to take on a new challenge where I can continue my professional development.’

  • Be supportive

You’ll then need to go on to explain that you are committed to supporting the business and will help organise a detailed handover and ensure all tasks are completed prior to your leaving date. 

Highlight that you are willing to help train your replacement during your notice period and make sure you leave all working documents in an accessible location which clearly outlines any outstanding jobs. This will help by giving your employer a smooth transition and they will be extremely grateful to you. 

Example:

‘During my notice period, I will do my very best to ensure all tasks are completed to a high standard and I will train other team members to undertake my current duties. If there is anything else I can do to assist you during my notice period, please do let me know and I will be more than happy to help.’

  • Wrap it up

Finally, it’s time to wrap up your resignation letter. This should summarise the other steps mentioned above, as well as wishing your employer all the best in the future. You should keep this short and sincere. 

Example:

‘I have thoroughly enjoyed my time working at [company name] and I am thankful for the opportunities you have given me. I wish you and [company name] all the best in the future and look forward to staying in touch. 

Best regards, 

[Your name]’

You can adjust the examples to fit your experience and daily tasks. Remember, that your current but soon to be former boss will read it and they will respect you greatly. After all, you may also need a reference from them so leaving on good terms is essential for your future success and highlights your professionalism.

How to write a letter of resignation

Other tips and tricks on how to write a letter of resignation

Now you know how to write a letter of resignation, it’s time to put it on paper. Always start by including the date on the resignation letter, this should go in the top left line. You should also include your employers business name and address underneath the date. 

Although it’s never easy to discuss handing in your resignation to your line manager, it’s a good idea to have this conversation with them. It might sound stressful but it shows good manners and respect for your manager. You don’t want to burn any bridges here so leaving the right way is important.

Discuss with them everything you have included in your resignation letter, thanking them for the opportunity and explaining your reasons for leaving, as well as assisting your replacement transition. You want them to know that you are willing to help them any way you can before you say your goodbyes. Make sure you have a copy of your resignation letter to hand when speaking with your boss so you can give it to them after your conversation.

Make sure you keep the conversation positive, be grateful, give feedback but never make a negative comment about the company or your colleagues.

Depending on your reasons, be prepared for your manager to ask you to stay, work extra notice or to even leave immediately. If your employer does ask you to leave immediately, remember that you should get paid your usual wage until the end of your notice period, when your contract will end. During this time, you will also be entitled to your usual benefits like pension contributions. This is called garden leave. 

If your employer does ask you to stay or work extra notice, make sure you’re prepared to answer. If you’re still uncertain about whether you want to stay or leave, ask your employer for time to consider their offer. 

If you’re considering resigning from your current position, it is a good idea to have a new job lined up. It’s often said that it’s easier to find a job when you’re already employed. However, if you do leave your job without a new career to go into, it doesn’t mean you won’t find employment. You can search careermap.co.uk for professional jobs, apprenticeships and graduate schemes if you’re still on the hunt for a new job. 

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