What should I include in my resignation letter?

Posted on Posted in Ask Alison

There’s a certain etiquette to be followed when writing a resignation letter whether you’re leaving on good terms or can’t wait to be free from the shackles of your current employer.

So what do you need to think about?

For starters, do be polite. Even if you hate the very sight of your boss/colleagues, bear in mind the old adage about being nice to people on the way up as you’ll meet them on the way down. Which means don’t forget your manners. Your resignation letter will be one of the last things to go on your HR file so keep it professional. Don’t scribble a goodbye on the back of your contract, tear it up and then give it to your boss in several pieces (something that I’ve witnessed in my HR career).

What you say will depend on your reason for leaving but should follow a standard letter structure and include the following information:

  • The date – this is important as this will be used to calculate your final day at work
  • Your current position
  • Your notice period

Take a look at these sample letters if you’re thinking of resigning.

The basic resignation letter provides limited details – use this one if you want to give the bare minimum information and get out of there! It’s still professional and, if your manager wants any more information, you can provide that during your exit interview. NEVER use your resignation letter to badmouth your employer – you still need a reference remember!

The second, more formal resignation letter, goes into a bit more detail and thanks the employer for their support during your time with the company. Again, you should have an exit interview to expand on anything else you might want to say.

The third is a detailed resignation letter and is perhaps most appropriate when, although you enjoy working with your current employer, you’ve had an offer that’s too good to turn down.

It may be that the circumstances around your decision are a bit more complicated. Perhaps you want to leave before your notice period expires or maybe you’ve decided to retire or go back to college. If you need a customised letter then get in touch to see how I can help.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *