Writing a professional resignation letter

Writing a professional resignation letter
Last Updated: June 16, 2023

What is the purpose of a resignation letter?

A resignation letter is a formal document that documents your departure from an organization.


The fundamentals of a resignation letter


As a measure of respect, communicate directly with your boss before sending a resignation letter, whether in person, over video chat, or on the phone. After youve had this chat, its also polite to submit a resignation letter to offer your companys HR department a record of your statement and your boss with operational information.


What to leave out of your resignation letter

Regardless of why youre quitting your job, make sure you tell your boss positively and professionally. As a professional document, resignation letters should not include any complaints about the company, your manager, or your co-workers. Only have the facts provided above and use a positive or matter-of-fact tone to make it professional.


Why Write a Letter of Resignation

If you need a reference from the firm or your manager, leaving on a favorable note will help.

Furthermore, putting vital information in writing is always a brilliant idea. That way, you can confirm your last day of employment, and there will be no confusion about when you are leaving the organization.


What Should Your Resignation Letter Contain?

What Should Your Resignation Letter Contain?

Letters of resignation should be brief and to the point. You are under no duty to explain why you are leaving the organization or where you plan to go next. There are three things you should include in your letter:

  • The fact that youre leaving; the date of your last day of work;
  • A heartfelt \"thank you\" for the opportunity to work with you.
  • Because this is a professional letter, you must also provide the date it was written. If someone rereads your letter in the future, it will be evident that you gave two weeks notice before leaving, as is typically required in employment contracts.
  • Your offer of assistance could include training your replacement or compiling a list of your daily job tasks and open projects for them to use so they can \"hit the ground running\" with minimal disturbance to your department.


What You Shouldnt Say in Your Resignation Letter

The information you leave out of your letter is just as crucial as the ones you offer. You want to make a positive first impression with your resignation letter. Even if you were dissatisfied with your employment or disliked the firm or your co-workers, now is not the time to express your dissatisfaction. Maintain a civil and gracious tone throughout your letter. More advice on how to write a resignation letter may be found here.


Tips for writing a resignation letter

Tips for writing a resignation letter

Here are a few pointers to help you write the most effective resignation letter possible:

  1. Maintain an optimistic attitude.
  2. Make a personal delivery of your mail.
  3. Take advantage of networking possibilities.
  4. Keep it brief if necessary.
  5. Make preparations to leave right away.
  6. For the next steps, follow your managers directions.


Before You Resign, Heres What You Should Know

Before you quit your job, be sure you understand the conditions of your contract. When resigning, if at all possible, follow the contract rules.

If you have a good working relationship with your boss or supervisor, its also polite to inform them in person that youll be submitting your formal resignation letter. Notifying your supervisor of your departure before you formally resign provides them time to process the information and prepare.


How to Write a Letter of Resignation

If you follow a few essential steps, writing a resignation letter can be a simple procedure. Before you write your letter, check with your immediate supervisor or HR manager to see if your organization has any procedures in place for resignations. They may, for example, request certain details or direct your communication to specific individuals inside the organization.


You can address your letter to either your manager or your human resources contact, and you can submit it by email or print it out and hand it over. Here are some resignation email message examples to help you create your own, as well as some resignation letter samples. If you send an email, make sure to include your name and the word \"resignation\" in the subject line. As an example, you can see below:

  • Subject: Jill Employee - Be Prepared for Your Resignation After You Resign
  • Be mindful that even if you give the employer two weeks notice, theres a chance they wont take you upon it. Make sure youre financially prepared for this scenario. If this happens, you should also clean out your computer before submitting your resignation.
  • You may not have time to erase data or collect email addresses and phone numbers if you are asked to leave right away.


Include the following items in this sequence when writing a resignation letter:

  1. Begin with an introduction and a resignation note.
  2. Include a thankfulness message
  3. Include next steps and a conclusion


Resignation Letter Example

If you need to write a resignation letter, you can find an example below that you can use as inspiration. Youll also receive advice on what to put in your resignation letter and how to conduct in-person communications during your final days at the organization. A resignation letter usually contains the following information:

  • Resignation letter from the company
  • Date of last day of work
  • Thank you note Next steps and other important details
  • Signature

Here is an example:


Professional Resignation Letter Example

Edwin Employee
170 Acturus Road
Greendale Kampfinsa
August 26, 2021
Ms. Margaret Manager
Chief Executive Officer
Trish Holdings
170 Acturus road
Greendale Kampfinsa
Dear Ms. Manager,
I am writing to notify you that I am resigning as an Accounting assistant with Trish Holdings. My last day of employment will be September 12, 2021
I appreciate the opportunities I have been given during my time with your company and your professional guidance and support.
I wish you and the company the best of success in the future.
If I can assist with the transition to my successor, please do let me know.
Very sincerely,
Signature (hard copy letter)
Jill Employee


Letters of Resignation for Special Circumstances

You may not be able to give two weeks notice in some instances, or you may want to offer your boss further details concerning your departure. Here are sample resignation letters for a variety of situations to help you resign gracefully.


Examples of resignation letters that include an explanation

While it is not obligatory to state why you are leaving a company, you may wish to do so in greater detail. Here are a few sample paragraphs that explain why people resign:


Due to a better opportunity, I resigned.

\"Im writing to let you know that Ive taken a position at a company that I believe will be a better fit for my future career. Please consider this letter as formal notice of my departure from ABC Corporation. My last day of work will be in two weeks, [enter last day of work].


While I will be moving on to a new position, I appreciate the opportunities for growth and learning that I have had throughout my time here.


Due to relocation, I had to resign.

\"Please accept this letter as my formal resignation from XYZ Corporation. My last day of work will be [insert your last day of work] in two weeks. In the following months, Ill be relocating to Hwange to be closer to my family. Thank you for giving me the chance to learn and grow in the accounting department–I hope to find a new job with equally motivating, helpful, and friendly co-workers.


Please let me know how I may assist you in making this transfer as painless as possible.
Thank you for everything, and best wishes.


[Your name here]


Due to a family emergency, I had to resign.

\"Please accept my resignation, which will take effect on [insert your last day of work here].\" My family had our second child last month, as you are aware. After my parental leave ends, I plan to stay at home with my children and focus on my familys needs. I appreciate your patience, and please let me know if there is anything else I can do to help you during this time.\" Im writing to let you know that Ill be leaving Company XYZ next month. I am unable to continue in this capacity due to family obligations that require my complete concentration at this time
Ill be ready to help with the transition for the following month.\"


Due to a career change.

Please accept my resignation, effective [your last day of work]. Resignation owing to change in career Please accept my resignation, effective [your last day of work]. Ive accepted a position at [insert your next company type] and am excited about my new career path, even though Ill miss working with you. Thank you for your help and opportunities over the past [enter period you worked at the company]. Would you please let me know if you require any assistance?
Its worth noting that this example refers to an industry rather than an individual company. In your resignation letter, there is no need to mention your future employers name.


Resignation owing to the need to return to school

Please accept my resignation, which will take effect [enter your last day of work]. Ill be starting graduate school next month and will have to quit my position at Company XYZ. I would like to express my gratitude for all of the wonderful possibilities Ive had while working on this team. While with Company XYZ, I gained valuable learning experiences and skills. The learning opportunities and skills I gained at Company XYZ have provided the appropriate basis for this new chapter in my life at graduate school.
If you require any assistance during this two-week transition, please let me know. Thank you again for all of the wonderful experiences youve had at the company over the past [insert period you worked there], and I hope to keep in touch.


In conclusion, resignation letters can help you leave a job on a good note and strengthen your future relationship with the firm and your co-workers. A well-written resignation letter can be a significant stepping stone in your professional career when written and with polish.


This article was written by Trish Makiwa, a consultant at the Industrial Psychology Consultants, a management and human resources consultants company. 

Cindy Baker
Trish Makiwa
I completed my Bachelor Honors in Psychology at the University of Zimbabwe. I have been working at Industrial Psychology Consultants as the front office administrator and PA to the managing consultant. It is my dream in life to continue learning and pursuing in the Human Resource and administration field and be a big asset/value to any institution which will use my services.

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