How to Write a Professional Resignation Letter (2021)

a picture of business person and resignation letter

Here's how to write a resignation letter. If you've decided to leave your work, you'll want to do so professionally. There are several reasons for leaving a job, including the desire to spend more time with family or taking a position with another company.

resignation letter

What is a resignation letter?

A resignation letter is a formal document that documents your departure from an organization. This paperwork is often necessary after you have informed your employer in person or by email of your intention to depart.

resignation letter

Preparing to write a resignation letter

As a gesture of respect, it is preferable to communicate directly with your boss prior to delivering a resignation letter, whether in person, through video chat, or over the phone.

Additionally, it is professional etiquette to send a resignation letter following this meeting to offer a record of your statement to your company's human resources department and your boss with operational details surrounding your leaving.

resignation letter

A resignation letter often contains the following information:

  • Resignation reason.
  • Date of the final day of work.
  • Gratitude statement.
  • Next steps and more essential information.
  • Signature.

What not to include in your resignation

Whatever the reason for your departure, convey your decision to your employer in a good, polite manner. Resignation letters, being professional documents, should not include complaints about the company, your boss, or coworkers. Maintain a professional tone throughout by using only the facts given above and speaking in a positive or matter-of-fact tone.

resignation letter

How to write a resignation letter

If you follow a few basic steps, writing a resignation letter can be a breeze. Consult your immediate supervisor or human resources management before to preparing your letter to ensure that you adhere to any business policies on resignations. For instance, they can request particular information or direct your message to certain individuals inside the company.

resignation letter

To compose a resignation letter, the following information should be included in the following order:

Introduce your notice of resignation

If you're mailing your letter, use a typical business letter style, including the date and your contact information at the top of the page—this information is optional if you're emailing your message. Begin your letter with a formal salutation, address the recipient by name, or use a common greeting such as "Dear [First name]" or "Hello [First name]."

Following that, declare unequivocally that you are writing to tender your formal resignation from your employment with the company, including the date of your final day of work. While it is customary to give two weeks' notice, your employer can have particular instructions on your last day of employment. Once you've gathered this information, record the date and weekday of your last day with the company.

Example

"Please take this as my formal resignation from ZZZ Company as a graphic designer. Friday, May 28, two weeks from now, will be my final day."

Show appreciation

Maintaining positive professional relationships is always a wise career move. Writing one or two words expressing your gratitude for your time at the company will aid in facilitating a peaceful transfer.

For instance, I am appreciative of the opportunity to learn from the best and develop as a designer. I will always be grateful for the opportunities I got to work with you and the team.

Finish with the next steps

Include any pertinent information about your transition that the recipient should be aware of. These specifics can be worked out in advance with your boss. If you're unsure what your transition duties should be, simply state that you're willing to do whatever it takes to ensure a seamless transfer. This type of gesture is widely seen as admirable.

Finish with a closing remark such as "Sincerely" or "Thank you," followed by your name.

Example

"To ensure a seamless transition, I aim to complete my final design project by May 20th and assign all remaining tasks to the relevant team members with your permission. I wish you, your staff, and the company the best of luck.

Sincerely,

John Ryan"

Resignation letter template

The following is an example resignation letter template that includes the essential details that must be included when leaving any company. This template should be modified to reflect your specific facts and circumstances.

Dear [supervisor name],

Please take this as formal notification of my resignation from [your job title] at [company name]. My last day will be two weeks from now, on [your last day of work]. I am eternally grateful for your support throughout my time here and for the invaluable experiences I have gained. It has been an honor to work with you and your staff.

Please notify me if there is any way I can assist you during this transition and make it as painless as possible.

I want to express my gratitude for everything.

[Your given name]

Resignation letter sample

Formal letter of resignation example:

Dear John,

Please take this as formal notification of my resignation from analyst at ZZZ Finance. My last day will be two weeks from now, on May 29th. I'm very grateful for your support throughout my time here. And for the invaluable experiences I have gained. It has been an honor to work with you and your staff.

Please notify me if there is any way I can assist you during this transition and make it as painless as possible.

I want to express my gratitude for everything this company has given me.

Sincerely,

Bryan Shore

resignation letter

Resignation letter examples

While it is not essential to give a reason for your resignation from a company, you can choose to elaborate on your departure. Here are a few sample lines describing some of the most typical reasons for resignation:

Due to a new job opportunity

"I am writing to notify you that I have taken a position with a company that I believe would be a better fit for my future career. Please take this letter as formal notification of my resignation from ZZZ business. My final day of work will be [insert last day of work] two weeks from now.

While I am leaving for a new role, I am eternally thankful for the chances for growth and learning that I had throughout my time here."

Due to relocation

"Please accept this as formal notification of my resignation from ZZZ Company. My last day of work will be two weeks from now, on [insert your last day of work]. In the next months, I'll be moving to New York to be closer to family.

We appreciate the chance to learn and grow in the accounting department, and I hope to find a new career with similarly inspirational, helpful, and friendly colleagues. I wish the company continued success.

Please notify me of any ways in which I can assist in making the transfer as seamless as possible."

Due to family reasons

"I am writing to express my resignation, effective [enter your last day of employment]. As you are probably aware, my family welcomed our second kid earlier this month. After my parental leave concludes, I would want to remain at home with my children and focus exclusively on their needs.

We appreciate your patience and would appreciate it if you could contact me if I can be of service during this period."

Due to changing careers

"I am submitting my resignation effective [your last day of employment]. I've taken a position at [insert your next company type] and am excited about the new path my career will go, even though I'll miss working with you.

We appreciate your support and opportunities over the last [enter your tenure at the company].

Please notify me if you want support during this transition period and how I can assist you over the following few weeks."

Take note that this example refers to an industry rather than a single company. There is no requirement to mention your prospective employer's name in your resignation letter.

Due to returning to school

"I'm aiming to resign effective [enter your last day of employment]. I'm starting graduate school next month and will need to leave from my position at ZZZ Company.

I'd want to express my gratitude for all of the wonderful chances I've had while working on this team. The educational experiences and abilities I gained while working at ZZZ Company prepared me well for this next step of my life in graduate school.

Please notify me if you want support during this two-week transition period. I'd want to express my gratitude for all of the great experiences I've had throughout my time at the company, and I look forward to remaining in contact."

Resignation letter tips

Tips to writing an effective resignation letter:

  • Maintain an optimistic attitude. Regardless of the circumstances behind your resignation, the tone of your letter should be positive—aim to leave amicably and retain your professional network. Above all, avoid using your resignation letter as a vehicle for venting displeasure.
  • Personalize your letter by delivering it in person. If feasible, send your resignation letter to your manager in person. If you are resigning in writing, add the date at the beginning of the letter. Additionally, you can send an email immediately following your meeting with your boss. Utilize a succinct and concise subject line, such as: Resignation Notice—[Your Name].
  • Take into account networking opportunities. Include wording expressing your manager's willingness to have a professional relationship with you after you depart the company. For instance, "I'd be delighted to maintain contact with you in order to continue learning from you and to offer any industry insights I've learned that you might find valuable." Please feel free to contact me at [your personal email address] in the future."
  • Keep it brief, if necessary. If you're leaving your company for sensitive reasons and don't want to provide extra information, simply send your resignation letter, your final day at the organization, and a comment such as "I wish the company luck in its future efforts."
  • Make arrangements for a quick departure. In some cases, your employer can request that you depart on the day you quit. If you are leaving for a new job that will not begin for many weeks, you can not get compensated for that time. If this applies to you, be aware of what occurs when others quit and prepare appropriately when choosing your start date in a new position.
  • Proceed according to your manager's directions. Following your official resignation, your boss can ask you to create a transition plan, complete certain assignments, or send a farewell message to your colleagues.

Resignation letter templates

Below are resignation letters and letter templates.

Job Title

Format

Reason

By Time

Additional Resources

Common questions

Questions from job seekers and writing a professional resignation letter.

How do I write a good resignation letter?

You do not need to write a lengthy letter or include excessive detail—all you need to do is inform your supervisor of your intention to quit, add a few essential points, and then respectfully conclude.

Maintain a one-page resignation letter and include the following:

  • A declaration of your intention to leave your work
  • The title of your official staff position
  • The date of your final day on the job
  • Appreciation to your employer for employing you
  • A highlight of your time there (optional)
  • An offer to train your replacement
  • Best wishes for the company's future
  • Your contact information

How do I professionally resign?

Here's how to resign in a professional manner. Adhere to your company's resignation policies. Consult your contract or employee manual to determine the required notice time, which can be two weeks, a month, or more.

  • Resign in person.
  • Be gracious.
  • Maintain an optimistic attitude.
  • Maintain the status quo till the end of your days.
  • Provide favorable recommendations.
  • Wish the company continued success.

Do you have to give two weeks' notice for quitting?

When an employee leaves a company, you can expect them to provide two weeks' notice, but this does not always happen. Regardless of workplace etiquette and norms, there are no regulations requiring employees to provide any notice, much less two weeks, prior to departing.

As an employee, provide as much notice or advance notice as possible.

Should I resign by email or letter?

Do not send your resignation through email - Your resignation should be given in person to your boss whenever feasible, therefore print it out and deliver it by hand. This makes you appear more professional and eliminates any uncertainty regarding the date the letter was received.

Is it rude to resign by email?

It is always preferable to resign in person and then send a proper resignation letter to your employer for your employment file. For instance, if you need to immediately notify your employer of your resignation, email is the ideal option. Alternatively, your company's policy can require that you quit by email.

Can a resignation letter be sent by email?

If you are resigning in writing, add the date at the beginning of the letter. Additionally, you can send an email immediately following your meeting with your boss. Utilize a succinct and simple subject line, such as: Resignation—[Your Name].

Can you resign immediately?

When you leave a job, it is customary to offer your employer two weeks' notice. While you should make every attempt to tell your supervisor of your resignation as soon as possible, there are occasions when instant departure is necessary.

Can your employer reject your resignation?

Your employer cannot deny your resignation unless you have failed to submit the required notice period as specified in your employment contract. Even then, if you have a good relationship with your manager, a final date can be negotiated.

best resignation letter template

Resignation Letter Template

Get this resignation letter template in Word format. Can be imported as a Google Doc. No email required.

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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, Entrepreneur (Profile), Dice.com, WorkWise, 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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