How to Write a Resignation Letter (with Samples)

Jul 6, 2020 | Job Search Strategy

A title graphic featuring a photo of a man handing another man a letter labeled "Resignation" and an alternate version of the article's title: "How to Write a Short Resignation Letter (with Samples)"

Before you get a new job, you’ll need to leave your old one the right way. Here’s our guide on how to write a short resignation letter (samples included.)

By: Matt Dupee | Resume Writer for Let’s Eat, Grandma

So the time has finally come: you’re ready to quit your job.

Maybe you can’t wait to leave this job because you finally got an offer with better pay. Maybe you’re sad to leave a job you loved because you’re relocating. Or maybe you’re in a toxic work situation and have just decided to take the risk and resign.

Whatever the reason, resigning can feel stressful. Let me ease your mind with some tips.

First, don’t overthink this process. You do need to write a resignation letter, but it doesn’t have to be complicated. Similar to a note declining a job offer, the letter should be short (no more than half a page) and to the point. You are only responsible for providing the information your direct superior needs to know to address your departure.

Writing a Resignation Letter: A Few Key Points

Write it ahead of time. Make sure you write the letter in advance so that you can submit it with your Two Weeks’ Notice.

Resign in person. The formality of a resignation letter is important, but you should also definitely resign in person and not just leave a note. 

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Rip off the Band-Aid. Don’t beat around the bush. Similar to declining a job offer, start right away with a clear, no-nonsense statement that you’re leaving and when you intend to be your last day.

Thank them for your experience at the job. Do this no matter the situation. Definitely don’t use this opportunity to complain about the company.

Supplemental Content for a Resignation Letter

Offer to help them transition and/or train your replacement (if you can). This is courteous, but know that they really may ask you to do this, so be prepared.

—Similar to declining a job offer, you can briefly and simply mention the reason you’re leaving, but know that you don’t have to. If this was a job you loved for a long time and you’re leaving on good terms, you may feel a brief explanation would be courteous to add. If not, there’s not much reason to explain your departure. Be careful. Don’t complain or bad mouth anyone.

You may feel tempted to offer flexibility with your “last day of work”. Don’t do it. Review your employment contract (if you have one), the company handbook, or any HR policy that may be available. Determine the conditions for resigning and the required terms. Then, provide hard dates in exact alignment with company policy and stick to them.

A Sample Resignation Letter, Short and Sweet:

<Copy & Paste your Resume Header>

Date

Contact Name
Title
Organization Name
Address
City, State, and Zip Code

Dear <Contact Name>,

I would like to inform you that I am resigning from my position as <Role> for <Company Name>, as of <Date>. My last day of employment will be <Date>, in line with the terms of my employment contract.

Thank you for the opportunity to work with you and the rest of the team during my <Length of Employment> of employment. I have enjoyed working for <Company Name>, and appreciate your guidance, support, and encouragement throughout this period.

Please let me know if I can be of any help during this transition.

Respectfully,

<Your Name>

A Sample Resignation Letter with a Reason for Leaving:

<Copy & Paste your Resume Header>

Date

Contact Name
Title
Organization Name
Address
City, State, and Zip Code

Dear <Contact Name>,

I would like to inform you that I am resigning from my position as <Role> for <Company Name>, as of <Date>. My last day of employment will be <Date>, in line with the terms of my employment contract.

While I have enjoyed my time with <Company Name>, I have been offered a new role with opportunities for advancement that are aligned with my overall career goals. I have learned so much from you and the team and I feel this is the right opportunity at the right time to make a transition.

Thank you for supporting my growth during my <Length of Employment> of employment. I have greatly enjoyed working for <Company Name> and appreciate your insight and encouragement throughout this period.

Please let me know if I can be of any help during this transition.

Respectfully,

<Your Name>

Don’t Overthink It

Don’t agonize over this resignation letter. Life happens, and business is business. Focus on being brief and professional, and you’ll have covered all your bases and will still be able to return for that cup of coffee.

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