If the time has come for you to leave your job, it is important to maintain a level of professionalism. The last thing you want is to leave a sour taste in your employer’s mouth – you never know if you will need a recommendation from them, or if a future employer has ties at your current company. Even if you had a bad experience with the company, it is still a good idea to leave on good terms. The best approach is honest, but still professional and benefits both parties. One way to announce that you are leaving the company is to submit a letter of resignation.
A letter of resignation includes several vital pieces of information and serves as a formal indicator of your two weeks’ notice. There are a few elements you may consider including within the letter.
Like any business letter, the resignation letter should begin with your address, the date, the recipient’s name and address, and a salutation (i.e. “Dear Mr./Ms. Smith:”.) In the first paragraph of the letter, state that you are resigning and what your final day of work will be. If at all possible, try to give at least two weeks’ notice, the standard guideline when resigning from a position.
In the middle paragraph, you have a few options. For a basic resignation letter, you can offer your thanks for what the company has done for you during your employment. If you have a particular reason you need to leave your position, you may include it here. There are any number of reasons you could be leaving your position, from family emergencies to moving cities to dissatisfaction with your position. If you want to include that you do not feel you are a good fit for the position, or that your family circumstances have changed, or that you have received a better offer, this is the place to do it. No matter why you are resigning, remember to keep it polite and professional. Avoid saying anything negative about the company, even if you had a bad experience.
Finally, it is a good idea to offer to help during the transition between you and the employee who replaces you. This is a gesture of goodwill and will also assist the company greatly if your position requires a lot of training or is difficult to fill.
Though sending a letter of resignation is acceptable on its own, you may want to talk with your supervisor privately first to inform them of your intentions. Afterwards, follow up with the official, formal resignation letter and confirm the details you discussed, including your last day at the company.