We all want to move up the corporate ladder and expand our careers, which often means changing companies and saying goodbye to current colleagues and employers. If you like your current company and the work you are doing, it can be hard to break the news while expressing your gratitude. On the other hand, if you hate your job and are excited to leave, it can be a challenge to temper that in a professional letter.
So, how do you write a resignation letter and say goodbye without burning bridges?
No employer will appreciate a last-minute resignation, so make sure you send your resignation letter in a timely fashion. This not only is courteous, but it also shows your dedication to professionalism and consideration for who you are leaving behind.
The minimum requirement at most companies is at least a two-week notice before leaving. Giving more notice than that certainly won’t hurt, but anything less is unprofessional.
When selecting a timeframe, remember the company needs enough notice to bring in a new team member to fill your position, even if that is someone internal to hold down the fort until a new hire can be made.
Keep it short
Your resignation letter should be straight to the point, concise, and clear. The best approach is to start with a salutation, followed by a direct statement about your plans to leave, precising the effective leaving date.
Be honest, but grateful
It’s always wise to express gratitude for what you have gained during your tenure. Remember that you should remain brief — if you love your job and want to discuss it further, you can speak to your manager privately. As this is a formal document for HR, brevity and professionalism are key.
If you don’t like your job, it’s still a good idea to be gracious. For example: I appreciate the opportunity to train and learn about the industry, or Working here was the perfect place for me to launch my career and I will always be grateful for the time I spent with this company.
No matter your experience, the professional thing to do when writing a resignation letter is show humility and gratitude for the time you were employed.
If you’re willing to train your replacement, offer to do so
In the resignation letter, you can offer to assist with recruitment and training your replacement if you are truly willing to do it. If you are not, simply do not offer. You may be expected to, of course, in which case you must find a way to fit it into your day while wrapping up key projects before your departure.
Submit your resignation letter both via email and in-person
In this age, digital trails are important. However, the last thing you need is for an email of this magnitude to be ignored in someone’s overflowing inbox. Send your letter via email, but also hand-deliver it to ensure the right people see it.
- Take your time, think over it before taking the decision to resign, and only do so when you are too sure to want to leave.
- Tell NO one about your decision to leave, until the final deal is done – until you have handed over the resignation letter to your manager.
- As a precaution, make sure you clear your desk completely before taking your resignation letter to your manager, just in case someone has to escort your out of the premisses.
NEVER PAY A DIME FOR JOB INTERVIEWS!