If you’re ready to say goodbye to your current job and move on to the next one, here are some tips and tricks to help you write a professional resignation letter.
The basic parts of a resignation letter
You may be emotional about writing your resignation letter or not, but it’s important to stick only with the details that matter for leaving your job:
- Job details. To start your resignation letter, state your current position and the effective date of your resignation. Resignation letters may be with or without advanced notice, but we’ll get to those details later. You should also include a short explanation of why you’re resigning from work.
- Word of thanks. Even if you already found a better job or you’re ready to quit corporate life altogether, remember that you enjoyed some benefits while working with that company.
So it’s a good idea to include some word of thanks to your employer for the job opportunity and for everything you enjoyed and learned while working for him. Even if you’ve had a bad experience with the company, saying thank you will help you down the line when you’ll need your boss for a reference.
- Transition Since you’ll be passing on your job to someone new, it’s best to state your willingness to hand off the responsibilities to your replacement. There’s no need to go into detail or promise anything, but saying that you will help out with transition is a good way to leave a positive impression on your employer.
The types of resignation letters
Resignation letter with a notice period
A notice period is common corporate practice because it allows your employer enough time to look for a replacement, give you time to wrap-up work duties and hand off your work to your replacement during a transition period and of course, keep your credibility as a good employee even if you’re already leaving the job. Here’s how to write it:
- Use proper heading. Write a return address consisting of your complete name, job title, department, and complete address, an inside address that contains your recipient’s name and the date when you’re going to send the resignation letter.
- Use the right salutation. Never use “To Whom It May Concern.” Make sure to address your recipient personally. It’s also good to include a short greeting at the beginning of your letter’s body.
- State the details of your resignation. Inform your recipient about your intentions of resigning and cite the specific date of your last day of work. It’s also common courtesy to include the reason for your resignation, although you don’t have to go into great detail about it. State your willingness to help with the transition of your job position and include some word of thanks to your employer for your time in the company.
- End your letter properly. End your resignation letter with a polite remark and include your name and signature at the bottom.
A notice period can range from 3 days to 30 days. Just make sure to state the effective date of your resignation to inform your employer of the time you have to transition your duties before leaving.
Resignation letter without notice period
Although a notice period is considered proper decorum when tendering a resignation letter, there are instances when you need to resign immediately. This could be a risky move because you might have to endure the long-term effect of such a swift decision on your career. But if you already made up your mind, here are some tips to get you through the resignation:
- Inform your head right away. Talk to your team leader, department head or supervisor about your plans of resigning immediately before tendering your resignation letter. State a clear reason for leaving so soon to allow your immediate head to empathize with you.
- Do your due diligence. Although you’re leaving right away and wouldn’t have time to pass on your job to your replacement, you should at least spend time organizing documents and leaving some instructions about your task so your replacement won’t have a hard time taking over what you left behind.
- Tender your resignation letter. Although you’re leaving in a hurry, you should still have the courtesy to tender a timely resignation letter before leaving your job. This will at least give your employer some positive impression about you even if resigning without a notice period puts a huge dent to his operation.
Creating a thankful resignation letter
As said earlier, you need to leave as much positive impression to your employer because you’ll need his vouch of confidence later on when you’re applying for a job.
But more than anything, creating a thankful resignation letter is your way of expressing your gratitude to the things you’ve learned in that company that has helped you with your career and personal growth. Here are some tips in creating a resignation letter that’s both thankful and formal:
- Don’t overdo it. There’s no need to overdo your praises just because you want your boss to say good words about you in the future. Be genuine with your gratitude, but keep it short.
- Stick to formal language. Remember that you are writing a formal resignation letter, so you need to steer clear from very emotional words.
- Be clear and concise. Don’t just thank your employer or manager; be specific about the things that you’re thankful for. Being too general about your gratitude could actually lead to negative impressions, so make sure that you state what experiences you’re grateful for in the company. It could be all that training given to you, the opportunities to get promoted or just the overall positive culture of the company.
A resignation may mean the end of one job and the beginning of another, but it’s also very important to transition smoothly in your career with the help of a proper resignation letter. Aside from showing your gratitude towards your company, you also get the opportunity to leave a good lasting impression, which will definitely help you in the future.