If you quit your job, you are not alone.
In April 2021 alone, around 4 million people left their jobs, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. This number is the highest recorded since the office began recording such rates.
Even though millions of people quit their jobs every month, we understand that telling your boss you’re leaving the company is never an easy conversation. A respectful resignation letter can make the difference between an awkward goodbye and a chance for a long-term professional relationship.
Ideally, you will provide a resignation letter two weeks before leaving the company. A resignation letter allows you to officially announce your termination of employment with the company and also offers essential housekeeping information, such as your last day and other details about your departure.
An effective role model helps you ensure a positive conversation with your boss and a smooth transition to your next trip.
But how do you write a good resignation letter? What should you include and exclude?
How to write a professional resignation letter
Your resignation letter should be brief and contain only relevant and useful information. Don’t focus on the benefits of your next role. Instead, take the time to think about any appreciation you feel for the business you are leaving behind.
Writing a resignation letter can seem like a daunting task, so we’ve created a professional resignation letter template to get you started and included some inspirational examples.
What should I include in a professional resignation letter?
Writing a professional resignation letter begins with understanding each of its components:
1. Declaration of resignation and end date
Begin your letter by indicating your position in the company. It might seem redundant if you work in a small business and your boss knows you well, but it’s essential to include it since the letter is your official termination. With this information should be a simple declaration of your resignation.
Also, providing an end date in the first paragraph of the body helps, as this is one of the first questions your employer will ask.
Here’s what that first paragraph might look like in practice:
I inform you that I am resigning from my post of [Position Name] for [Company Name], effective [Date].
Take the time to reflect on how you’ve grown up or what you’ve enjoyed the most about your time with the company. Be as specific as possible – perhaps the company offered professional development opportunities, or perhaps you appreciated the climate the company fostered and the supportive atmosphere.
It is also nice for your employer to receive a thank you for the time and resources they have devoted to supporting your career growth. Here is an example of what it might look like:
I appreciate the professional development opportunities you have offered me over the past two years. I enjoyed my tenure at [Company Name] and I feel particularly honored to have been part of such a united team.
If you want, you can also include your next destination. For example, if you are changing industries to pursue a passion or to pursue higher education, it may be appropriate to include it. For example:
I accepted a position of [New Job Title], and I’m looking forward to [pursuing my passion in X or continuing my work with a focus on Y].
However, if you are leaving the business for a competitor, it is best to omit this information.
3. Transition details
In the third paragraph, mention your willingness to facilitate the transition. For example:
If I can be of assistance during this transition please let me know. I am available to help train my replacement and make sure all my reports are updated before my last day on the job.
This sentence may sound different to you. But no matter what you write, it is recommended that you include specific details of how you will be helping.
As an optional follow-up paragraph, briefly review the work you will give up when you formally leave the company. While it is technically the responsibility of your manager to take over this work and determine how it will continue, it is helpful to list all of the projects and tasks that you have been assigned to make the transition even easier for the company. business in the meantime.
If you haven’t held a managerial position or collaborated with other departments, you can skip this part.
4. Personal contact details
This last paragraph is optional and doesn’t need to be included all the time, especially if you don’t want or need to use your former employer as a reference. However, many applicants choose to maintain their professional networks, so such a fence might look like this:
Thanks again for the opportunity to work at [Company Name]. I wish you all the best and look forward to keeping in touch. You can email me at [Email Address].
Examples of professional resignation letter
Keeping the template above in mind, let’s take a look at a few sample resignation letters for different positions, each taking a slightly different but friendly tone for their resignation.
1. Example of a letter of gracious resignation
2. Brief example of resignation letter
3. Example of an immediate resignation letter
While the best way to quit a job is to give at least two weeks’ notice and offer transition assistance, sometimes circumstances make it impossible. If you need to quit your job immediately without notice, you need an immediate resignation letter.
Here is an example that may help you:
Free professional resignation letter templates
Sometimes the nature of your position deserves a more specific resignation letter when you leave. Below are a few role models that help these more dynamic roles gracefully step away from the business.
1. Contractor’s resignation letter template
If you are freelance, you may need to adjust the focus of your resignation letter so that it deals with your final assignments and how exactly you will part ways with your client. This includes your current tasks, the tasks you will not complete, and how you will accept your final payment.
2. Model resignation letter for executives
If you are in a managerial or senior position, a quick email or two paragraph notice to your manager may not be enough as a formal resignation. Since these roles are more difficult to fill, you might play a bigger role during the transition period, especially as you manage more people and decide on the direction of more projects.
The model below separates the resignation into two sections – the first is the resignation itself, and the second is how (and with whom) the resigning’s work will continue. This is just one of the different models we offer.
Ready to write your resignation letter?
Regardless of your role, why you are leaving it, and who you find out about, be polite in your resignation letter. Gratitude and support when you leave goes a long way with employers, and the last thing you want to do is leave the company on a bitter note, even if you are leaving for bitter reasons.
By drawing inspiration from samples and resignation letter templates, you’ll protect your bridges and keep your professional network intact at the start of your next adventure.
Editor’s Note: This article was originally published in October 2018 and has been updated for completeness.