Writing a Letter of Retirement (Examples and Template)

A retirement letter is a type of formal notice of your intention to head into retirement. The retirement letter is intended to describe when you plan to retire. And how you'll assist your employer with the transition.

Informing the Human Resources staff and supervisor about the plan to retire is the first step. Once you have that, it's time to write a resignation letter about retirement (your retirement letter).

letter of retirement

What is a retirement letter?

A retirement is a formal resignation letter that you'll use to submit to your employer, announcing your intention to retire. Unlike other types of resignation letters, writing a retirement letter is about telling the employer you'll be no longer working in the future. Rather than moving onto a new employer.

In many cases, writing a retirement letter will be fun.

Since you won't be leaving the company for another, it's easy to end the employment relationship on good terms. And it's far easier to thank your employer for their time and experiences together.

This letter is a formal way to announce your retirement.

How to write a retirement letter

Here's how to write a resignation letter due to retirement.

Write your letter

Start a business document, usually based on the resignation letter template. Or the template provided below.

Write the formal letter, displaying sincerity and professionalism.

Give notice of your retirement

Meet with your manager and inform them of the upcoming retirement. Before submitting the letter, have a conversation about the plans to head into retirement.

Discuss the steps that could be taken to ensure there's a smooth transition.

letter of retirement

Provide ample notice, usually two weeks or more. In many cases, retirement could be discussed up to a year in advance.

Express you gratitude

Be grateful for the opportunity. And spend time thinking about positive experiences that could be shared in the letter or in future meetings.

It's best to end this relationship in a positive way. Even if you aren't going to be entering the workforce anytime soon.

Describe achievements

Spend time collecting the achievements that were made together. What has been significant? What are the wins?

Write these achievements down. It could become useful when giving a speech, when writing your letter, or when writing thank-you notes to your colleagues.

Mention your plan going forward

What's your plan for retirement? Do you want to work on your hobbies and interests? Have this in mind.

Many of your colleagues are going to ask what you plan to do in retirement.

And it's best to have a strong/sincere answer for them.

Colleagues asking about your retirement plans is a sincere way for them to engage with you about your retirement.

letter of retirement

Move to a consulting role or freelancing role

Is it possible that you could freelance with the company? And take on 20 hours each week of consulting work? Extra income in retirement is never a bad idea.

Could you spend a few hours each week ensuring that the company is in a great place?

Consider this option when speaking with your supervisor/manager/boss.

Offer assistance in the transition

Have a plan to assist with the transition. How can you ensure the company is going to succeed without you? Can you help train your replacement?

Having a plan can assist your manager. This plan can be shared inside the letter or directly with the manager.

Make the transition smooth by providing ample notice of your retirement. And having a plan for how you plan to assist your team.

Provide your contact information

Provide your personal contact information so everyone can reach you. This includes your personal phone number, email address, and more.

Retirement doesn't mean that you have to end your relationship with your colleagues.

letter of retirement

Learn more about writing a retirement resignation letter.

Retirement letter example

Here is an example retirement letter.

John Smith

VP of Product

1114 South 4th St,

Chicago IL 60610


April 14th, 2021


Andy Jesus

Apple, Inc

[email protected]


Dear Mr. Jesus,

This letter is to inform you of my retirement. Our discussion of my upcoming retirement has been something we've made a priority for the past year. And it's time for me to make the final move. I'm suggesting that my last day of employment be on May 29th, 2021.

I have so many great memories of my career. And my career here. I could not be more grateful to be ending my career in this wonderful environment. Over the last many months we've had the chance to accomplish some great things together.

Our transition to a fully remote workforce. Our ability to deliver quarterly results. And the improved morale of the office is something that I will absolutely cherish going forward.

I'm going to be writing thank-you notes to every single one of the employees here.

I would like to offer to help train my replacement. And will be with the company for at least the next month to be able to do this. I'm happy to help.

Please let me know if there's anything I can do to further assist the company in the transition.

Thank you so much,

John Smith

Retirement letter template

[Your name]

[Your job title]

[Email address]


[Supervisor's name]

[Supervisor's job title]

[Company name]

[Company address (city/state/zip code)]


[Current date]


Dear [Mr/Ms Supervisor's Name],

[First Paragraph]

State the intention to retire. Suggest that you're ready to retire. And state that this is a formal letter of resignation due to retirement. Have a final employment date listed.

[Second Paragraph]

Thank the employer for the experiences together. Mention any agreed-upon retirement benefits that are being offered. Describe achievements with the team, business, and company. Be sincere.

[Third Paragraph]

Offer suggestions for the transition plan. Provide ample opportunity to train a future employee. Mention any desire to work on a contract arrangement or via freelance.


[Your full name]


letter of retirement

How to announce your retirement

When retiring, some companies like to hold office parties or other celebrations to commensurate the employees time with the company.

Here are some ideas on how to do that.

Hold an office party

An office party is a great idea. This can be done in-person or virtually, through Zoom. Everyone should come with one great memory to share about the person who is retiring. Try to hold the party on the last day of work for the employee.

It could mean more that they have the opportunity to celebrate their last day in the position. And officially close out their career with a great party.

Bring in a cake

When in an office setting, a cake is a great idea. Many cake companies offer the option to print someone's photograph on the cake. This is a funny and easy way to celebrate someone's retirement.

Make a bulletin board

A bulletin board, where each employee can write a note about their fellow colleague who is leaving is a great way to sincerely show appreciation for them.

Put sticky notes or a notepad near the bulletin board. And ask each employee to write something and post it on the board when they have free time.

Make a movie

A short celebration movie, that uses the achievements of the employee is a great idea. It's easy to create a video like this using iMovie.

letter of retirement

Put all of their best work into the video. Team photographs. Team trips. And anything that could seem special to share.

Thank your team

Don't forget to thank the team and everyone you worked with.

Have personal conversations

Make sure to schedule one-on-one conversations with each of your colleagues before your final day of employment. Bring something special to share with them. And schedule the meeting at a time where you both can have a sincere conversation.

Write a list of everyone that's important to you at the company. And make sure that you schedule your time with them far in advance of your retirement party.

Write thank-you notes

A thank-you note can be written by email. Or printed into a card. Put a sincere message into the card. And make sure that each of your colleagues receives one.

Keep in mind, anyone who doesn't receive one of these cards could take offense to the act.

Be sure to catalog everyone in the office that you want to thank. And be sure that they receive a card, email, or personal note.

letter of retirement


Retirement letter and retirement tips.

  • Do you have to retire? Retirement can be difficult. Can you go freelance, contract, or part-time with the company? Can you continue working into your retirement? These are important questions to ask yourself. And could inform how you suggest a transition plan for the position/company.
  • Meet with your manager. Retirement doesn't happen overnight. You should have a general sense of when you plan to retire. And your supervisor should have a strong understanding of your desire to retire far in advance of your resignation.
  • Be funny about your retirement. This isn't a sad time. This is a happy time. Show everyone that your retirement is something you're ready for by making it humorous. Write funny goodbye letters. Or be supportive in the office. And reflect a generally positive attitude. Make it an easy transition.
  • Make a speech. During your retirement party, be ready to share a short speech. Think about everything positive that happened. Major achievements that you were able to accomplish within the business. And share those stories with the team.
  • Never end on a negative note. Just because you won't need to be employed again in the future doesn't mean this is an opportunity to burn a bridge. It will feel better in the long term to make sure that everyone who thinks of you remembers a fond memory. Or wishes that you were back in the office, working with them. End this relationship on a sincere, positive note. Even if you don't feel that way.
  • Enjoy retirement. Many people in the United States won't get the opportunity to retire. If this person is you, enjoy this time. Retirement is a major achievement. And marks something very significant in terms of your entire career. Do whatever needs to happen in order to feel satisfied and fulfilled during your retirement.

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author: patrick algrim
About the author

Patrick Algrim is a Certified Professional Resume Writer (CPRW), NCDA Certified Career Counselor (CCC), and general career expert. Patrick has completed the NACE Coaching Certification Program (CCP). And has been published as a career expert on Forbes, Glassdoor, American Express, Reader's Digest, LiveCareer, Zety, Yahoo, Recruiter.com, SparkHire, SHRM.org, Process.st, FairyGodBoss, HRCI.org, St. Edwards University, NC State University, IBTimes.com, Thrive Global, TMCnet.com, Work It Daily, Workology, Career Guide, MyPerfectResume, College Career Life, The HR Digest, WorkWise, Career Cast, Elite Staffing, Women in HR, All About Careers, Upstart HR, The Street, Monster, The Ladders, Introvert Whisperer, and many more. Find him on LinkedIn.

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