When you leave your job, there are a lot of loose ends you need to tie up before you go. If you’re in an occupation where you serve clients, one of the most important details is informing your customers that you have a new job.
It’s not as easy as dashing off a quick email to let them know that you’re moving on. Depending on company policy, your employment contract, and the laws in your state, you may need to take care not to reveal too much about where you’re going.
In some cases, client lists may be considered trade secrets. Check your employment contract and state law before reaching out to your clients.
Regardless of your specific situation, writing a job announcement letter to clients can be a tricky undertaking. Here’s what you need to know about the form and content of your note, as well as the optimal timing and follow-up.
Before You Write a New Job Announcement Letter to Clients
Many organizations consider client lists trade secrets. To protect their property, these companies typically ask employees to sign a confidentiality agreement, non-disclosure agreement, or other documentation stating that they won’t share client lists with competitors. To make sure you stay on the right side of any legal commitments:
1. Review Your Employment Contract
Your employment contract may state what you’re allowed to share or contain an addendum with this information. Client lists may or may not be specifically called out, but you will likely see some prohibition against sharing that company’s intellectual property or trade secrets.
2. Talk to Human Resources
If you’re not certain what’s included in your contract, talk to HR. They should be able to tell you whether you’re allowed to let clients know where you’re going. HR can also advise you about other matters related to your departure, including your last paycheck, unused vacation or sick time, and other issues.
3. Connect With Your Manager
Even if your contract doesn’t explicitly prohibit connecting with your clients, and HR doesn’t have an issue with you doing so, it’s a good idea to speak with your boss. At the very least, you’ll want to coordinate the timing of your announcement. Your manager may also ask you to let your clients know which team member will be responsible for their accounts going forward. Or, your boss may prefer to reach out personally to do so.
Do not update LinkedIn until after you have started your new job. In fact, tell only your most trusted family members and friends to avoid a public relations crisis.
Write an Effective Letter to Your Clients
If you do reach out to your clients directly, keep the following tips in mind:
Be professional, positive, and gracious. Thank your former employer and current clients for the role they have played in your success. Then, express optimism for the exciting future in store.
Include the necessary information. Let your clients know when you will be leaving your current role and when you will start your new one. Let them know which team member will be taking over your accounts and facilitate an introduction.
Offer your contact information. If your manager agrees and you’re not bound by an NDA, let your clients know where to reach you.
If allowed, you can also follow up with your clients after your departure to make a sales pitch for your new employer.
Sample Job Announcement Letter to Clients #1
Subject line: New Position Announcement
I am excited to announce that I have joined ABC Marketing and will begin on August 7. I am so grateful for six wonderful years at DEF Marketing and for the integral role you have played in my success. I invite you to join me in this exciting new chapter to continue our mutually beneficial partnership. You would enjoy the same commitment and dedication from me, with additional support from a top agency with hundreds of successful campaigns that turned their clients’ brands into household names.
I am confident that this change will allow me more autonomy and time to serve you in all of your marketing efforts and goals. However, if you choose to stay with ABC Marketing, Laura Marks would be your new agent beginning August 7.
Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions, and know that I will do everything I can to make this a smooth transition.
123 Park Street
Anytown, Ohio 45011
Sample Job Announcement Letter to Clients #2
Subject line: Moving On
I’m writing to let you know that I’ll be leaving Acme Corp on October 1 for new opportunities. However, you’ll be in good hands: Jon Smith will be taking over your account, and I’m confident that you’ll be pleased with his commitment to customer service and knowledge of the industry.
I’ve greatly enjoyed working with you and the rest of the team at LMK Org, and I wish you all the very best. Please don’t hesitate to reach out if I can help you during the transition.