How to Write a Resignation Letter + Examples
How you leave your job is as important as how you started it. Your resignation letter is more than a professional courtesy. It’s a necessity because it formalizes your departure from the company.
Whether you like your employer or don’t, handing in a well-crafted resignation letter speaks volumes on who you are as a professional. We’re here to help you create this final letter.
Table of Contents
What to do before Resigning
We recommend that you consider sitting down with your manager to inform them of your intention to leave the company before you submit a resignation letter.
If you work remotely and meeting face to face isn’t possible, email your manager to ask them when they are available to speak over a video call.
Having this conversation is rarely easy and might be uncomfortable, but it is the professional thing to do, if feasible. For one thing, your manager won’t be caught by surprise when you formally submit your two weeks’ notice. Secondly, depending on why you’re resigning, it could potentially lead to negotiations.
6 Components of a Resignation Letter
Your resignation letter should be straightforward and professional. Below you’ll see the six sections that comprise a resignation letter and what you should include in each.
Include the date you’re submitting the letter, followed by your personal information — your name, physical address, phone number and email address.
Address the person you’re giving the letter to formally.
Start the letter by writing your statement of resignation from the position in the company. After this, provide the date of your last day of employment.
Give a brief reason for your resignation. You don’t have to go into detail about where you’re going or what you’ll be doing in your next place of employment; a simple explanation will do. For example: “I was given a job offer that I simply cannot refuse” or “Personal reasons necessitate that I vacate my position.”
Show gratitude. Thank the employer for the opportunity to have been part of their team and offer to help in any way you can during the transition.
Finish the letter with your signature. If it’s convenient, print a hard copy, sign it and give it to your manager, but emailing a PDF version of your resignation letter with an electronic signature will work if you are remote or unable to meet up.
How to Format Your Resignation Letter
A resignation letter should be written in the standard business letter format, similar to a cover letter.
- Times New Roman is the generally accepted font, but fonts like Arial, Helvetica or Verdana may be used in a less traditional place of employment.
- The font size should be 12.
- The entire text must be justified to the left (block format) and single-spaced, except for a double space between paragraphs.
Resignation Letter Do’s and Don’ts
- Resign gracefully — even if your time working for the employer was less than great. Thank them for the opportunity and maintain a positive attitude.
- Offer to help during the transition period, if feasible. Perhaps your manager will turn down the offer and assure you they’ll handle everything, but they’ll appreciate the gesture.
- Keep it private. Only share the letter of resignation with your manager and the company’s HR department.
- Go into too much detail about your new job. You don’t need to include in your resignation letter where you’re going, your salary or your new position. Keep it simple.
- Make the letter too long. Try not to go on and on about how grateful you are to have worked with them, even if you have been there for more than ten years. Thank them, remain positive, but also keep it within one page.
- Mention a better salary as the reason you’re leaving. You can use the higher salary as leverage to negotiate a raise with your manager if you desire, but otherwise, just write in your resignation letter that you got an offer you can’t refuse.